Laughter trackBy Paul Robins
October 02, 2008
Take an old piano, add a quartet of middle aged gay men and what have you got?
Yes, that’s right, Four Poofs and a Piano, the infamous house band from Friday Night With Jonathan Ross, who will be bringing their camp offering to the Reading Comedy Festival.
The ensemble are promising an eclectic mix of song and dance, from jaunty re-workings of classic covers to their own comic observations of life in the noughties.
Consisting of Stephen De Martin, Dave Wickenden, David Roper and Ian Parkin, the foursome say thereis far more to them than what you see on the box.
“Everyone knows us from the telly, but being on our own allows us to bring our own personalities out and show people what we can do,” says Stephen.
“There will be a lot of singing and dancing and generally prancing about and having more fun than is appropriate for men
of our age.
“We are doing our own version of bands like Take That. So I hope Reading is ready for us.”
The show, entitled More Hairdresser Than Barbershop, is part of their 55-date national tour and illustrates how far they have come since performing their debut gig at Soho’s exclusive Groucho Club eight years ago.
In 2001, the boys were spotted by the producers of the Jonathan Ross show and invited to become the resident house band providing musical introductions for star guests including Madonna, David Bowie and Robbie Williams.
They have also gone on to establish themselves as a regular on the comedy circuit, touring with Joan Collins and enjoying a sell-out run at the Edinburgh Festival with their show Never Mind The Botox.
Former cruise ship singer Stephen, who describes himself as Australia’s answer to Jane McDonald, says: “You can’t beat live performance. Jonathan Ross’s show is great, but it’s not live.
“We have worked hard to refine our material.
“We all have very different musical and comedic tastes, but we manage to combine it all together.”
And can audiences expect some innuendo-laden gags à la Mr Ross?
“Well you’ll just have to wait and see,” says Stephen. “There will be one or two surprises.”
Four Poofs and a Piano will perform at Reading Concert Hall on Friday, October 10 at 8pm. For tickets call the box office on (0118) 960 6060 or log on to www.readingarts.com.