One thing the people of Swadlincote have, apart from a great new cinema and a much needed poundland (sense the sarcasm), is a great sense of humour.
I run the comedy club at the John Nike ski centre and the people of Swad have done themselves proud. The Comedians love performing for them, even though they have built up a reputation for being "A lively bunch!" the heckles are witty and sometimes quite intelligent making for a very interesting and funny show. The comedians are allowed to tell their stories but the Swaddies still make them work for their money, they've un-knowingly created a healthy balance of audience participation... with the odd exception, and I use the word 'Odd' in every sense of the word; a couple of ladies discussing their shopping list at the top of their lungs springs to mind... and when this happens the Swadlincote crowd can very quickly turn on their own, targeting their pray they produce a sharp, collective 'SHHH!' like an irritated Cobra.
Running the club is very rewarding, I spend months in preparation, updating websites, booking the acts, producing and distributing the publicity whilst worrying if anyone will buy tickets?, will the acts get stuck in traffic? (It’s happened) and what sound and lighting equipment do I need? But that all melts away the moment the acts walk on stage and I begin to laugh in a room full of people all laughing too. I wouldn't say it's the best medicine, unless you're suffering from 'down in the dumps!' but laughter is definitely therapeutic. When the night is done and the aching smile is still lingering on my face, I like to steal that little bit of glory and claim that smile as a well done pat on the back for making everyone else’s face ache for at least one night of the month.
Its thanks to the audiences at Swadlincote, the wonderful staff at the ski centre and the preparation that The Comedy Lodge has just had a great show at Solihull and is about to open its doors in Plymouth and Bracknell... Not because of endless pestering through publicity and cold calling but because they've heard about the Swadlincote night and want to recreate the same atmosphere and results... Well done Swad you've created an atmosphere to be envious of.
I have two great kids and a beautiful wife. I'm originally from sunny Newhall and after travelling around the country i finally gave in to the sweet green grass of home, I now live in Swadlincote and I...