Big Jack’s Laughter Club tonightBy Phil Creighton
February 09, 2012
Big laughs are promised from big names at a big birthday party taking place this week. And it’s all compered by the big man himself, Big Jack.
Tonight, the Big Jack’s Laughter Club will celebrate its seventh birthday in style – welcoming back comedy ace Carl Donnelly, alongside three other top comics, as well as a set by Big Jack himself.
And it’s an extra-special event for another reason: it’ll be the last comedy night held at Afroba before it closes on Sunday.
The bar, which is in Merchants Place, just off Friar Street, will then host a three-day closing party running over Friday, Saturday and Sunday evenings.
With the birthday in mind, Big Jack is planning on pulling out all the stops, although there’s no word on whether he’ll be jumping out of a giant birthday cake at the start.
“We hope to make it a big night,” he says. “The club is very special and we have had loads of big stars here along the way – not least Carl Donnelly.”
The club has been at Afroba ever since it launched in on Wednesday, February 9, 2005. Although it was intended to be a one-off, it was so popular that it became a fortnightly event, before settling down as a monthly night.
Over those seven years, the non-profit making club has welcomed a host of names including comics from Reading.
“Over the years audiences have had the privilege of seeing the likes of John Richardson, Carl, Ava Vidal, Joe Wilkinson, Imran Yusef, Shazia Mirza, Wil Hodgson, Zoe Lyons, Jack Black lookalike and local lad Charlie Baker, Chris McCausland, Henning Wehn, Patrick Monahan … the list goes on,” says Big Jack, adding:
“I need a breather.”
Jack’s low-key and laid-back style is one of the reasons why the club has been successful. And this is important to the funnyman.
“The club is not corporate at all and that is its secret,” he says.
“The fact that we have survived for seven years speaks volumes. It’s a comedy gem right in the heart of Reading.”
And Tonight’s set from Carl will help continue that tradition.
He was the first winner of Reading Comedy Festival’s open mic contest and has since established himself as a comedy circuit favourite.
The Perrier Award nominee is a regular on Mock The Week, Stand Up For The Week, Dave’s One Night Stand and Russell Howard’s Good News – and he’s got a host of radio credits to his name.
Also on the bill at the seventh birthday show will be rising Canadian star Bobby Mair, Sarah Hendrickx and Max Dickins.
The show starts at 8.30pm and costs £7.50. Tickets can be bought on the door.
Big Jack is also on Twitter, just follow @BigJacksLC