28th November 2014 – Flavel Arts Centre – Gary Delaney with Caimh McDonnell.

Finding our way to Dartmouth without mishap tonight, we had a lovely stroll before the gig around the festive food and crafts event that was running in the gardens just outside of the Flavel (with even the weather behaving for once!) and then made our way in for a stop at the bar, a quick chat with some other punters, and into our seats.

Neither Gary or Caimh were new acts to us. Gary we’d seen in Exeter and Edinburgh, and Caimh in Totnes and Edinburgh. When you think of all the acts we have seen it’s a mark of our esteem for any artist when we’ll willingly pay money and take time to see them again and again.

Soon enough Gary came on stage for five minutes to do his warm up’s warm up and explain the schedule for the evening before bringing on his support. Ciamh bounced on stage giving us a mix of material, delivering it with his self effacing, observational and upfront style. Ciamh’s look is cuddly, with a flowing silver mane, pale Celtic skin,  (“You’d think I’d made a special effort to be as white as possible”) and the obligatory comedian uniform of t-shirt and jeans. We were enjoying the set but…there was an annoying conversation going on behind us. Every couple of minutes another little chat would be had. Two elderly ladies seemed to think that everyone had come to hear THEM and not the comedians and were keeping a back and forth chat going on every point covered on stage. Not one person trying to help another understand the punchlines, or one person helping a deaf person, just two old ladies, possibly under the influence of a couple too many drinks, who were ignoring the fact that people around them had paid good money to hear the comics. These ignoramuses were in the row immediately behind us, in the seats immediately behind us and other people were looking around to see where the noise was coming from.

Anyway, we gritted our teeth and got through till the interval. The perpetrators got up and went out – hopefully, I was thinking, not for more alcohol to further loosen their tongues!

Back into the second half and to our headline act. Gary is master of the wicked one liner. Innocent puns, double entendres and downright filth are his stock in trade.  Starting off with the least offensive, dipping his toe into mid level smut (to test the Flavel waters) and occasionally throwing us all in at the deep end with breath taking abandon, Gary’s set is not for the faint of heart. Our two old chatterboxes were still in full flow, and finally, having totally lost patience, I turned around and told them to “SSSShhhh”, only to be told to “SSShhh yourself!”  (Hello??)

Gary however, had heard the ssshushing, and gave his thanks to the “audience enforcer”, obviously having heard the noise going on before.

Eventually, under the onslaught of Gary’s endless gags, the yappers DID ssshush, and we were able to get on with it. One of the props that Gary was using was a subject choice board which punters could pick from to give us another slant to the evening and a break from the oneliners. He was also using a laptop and multimedia projector. One of the choices had Gary bringing up Wikipedia entries on the screen where he delights in making mischief because Wikipedia entries can be edited by the public. He has even Wiki’d himself.

All in all, a very good night, despite distractions. Comedy would be so much easier for everyone without idiots in the audience!

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Not the best pic Dave’s ever taken of me, but Gary looks fine!

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