Braving the sub-zero temperatures in Manchester and decided the perfect cure for those January blues must be laughter, after all; they say laughter is the best medicine and I've come to the Frog & Bucket Comedy Club, a Manchester institution to warm my cockles and have a good old fashioned giggle.
On entering the club, your shown to your table and it's a very relaxed atmosphere, it's best described as a pub with comedians, so it's on the comedians to deliver a stand out show to cut through the distractions. It's the Thursday Night Live show with five comedians entertaining us over the course of the evening, so let's get down to the laughs.
The Frog's stage has been graced over the years by some very big names in comedy, most famously Peter Kay who was a huge fan of the club and wrote fondly of it in his autobiography, so I could well see tonight's performers on the small screen in the near future.
Kicking off the show, was Alex Broadman who is our compere for the evening, it came across that he was struggling to get the audience engaged and a few of his jokes just fell a little flat, he introduced Steve Shanyaski to the stage who bounced on full of energy but I have seen Steve 3 times last year and every time it has been the exact same material and same routine, I laughed out loud the first time I saw it but not so much the third time, I was really hoping tonight, in a new year that he'd have some new jokes and material, this was unfortunately not the case, it's got to the point now where I could work with him as a double act because I know his material so well, it was funny the first time but comedy isn't like a No.1 pop song, you can't do a greatest hits forever more.
After the first interval, Alex Broadman got back on the stage and made some unfunny observations which once again fell flat while welcoming El Baldinho to the stage, a comedy magician who I can only really describe as an old fashioned entertainer, puns a plenty and he was light hearted enough for me to enjoy the novelty, following on from the Stoneage magic was Abigoliah Schamaun; an American who provided a handful of references to Americans living in the UK, a couple of gags didn't hit the mark but on the whole her set was enjoyable and in a night which I think has not only disappointed me but the majority of the audience, I will take enjoyable as the best I'll get.
Closing the show; Seasoned performer, Dan Nightingale entertained the audience with quite a range of observations and jokes and stood out quite a lot from the rest.
Verdict: A real let down, I expected so much more from such an iconic Manchester Venue!
Reviewer: Max Eden
Reviewed: 5th January 2017