Comedians for 2009

Mimi ON Jan 05, 2009 AT 4:07 pm

Henning Wehn

Henning Wehn

By Iain Laurie

It isn’t often that you have the chance to recommend a German comedian so I shall revel in this opportunity – here’s a good German comedianHenning Wehn. He calls himself the German Comedy Ambassador and opens with ‘The British always say that we Germans don’t have a sense of humour – I don’t find that funny.’ He cleverly pokes fun at the British by playing on stereotypes of the Germans such as their work ethic and austerity of lifestyle in comparison to the reality of ours. You’d be forgiven for considering a German coming to have a laugh at us an unpalatable disgrace but the charm and good-nature of Wehn is very appealing and his act is ultimately reassuringly anglophilic. Watch a clip of Henning Wehn here

There seems to be a fashion of self-deprecation and general

Tom Basden

Tom Basden

 niceness amongst stand-ups at the moment. Tom Basden does it with short songs about repeatedly bumping into Richard Madely and whether it’s Zara Phillips or the horse who is the talented one, earning him the Best Newcomer award at the 2007 Edinburgh Festival. Two other self-diminishing chaps are Joe Wilkinson, who opens his act joking about his lack of material, and Henry Paker, winner of the Leicester Mercury Comedian of the Year 2008 an unashamed middle-class pedant, whose observations on manners and etiquette are clever and sharp. Watch a clip of Tom Basden here

Also poking fun at his own comfortable background is Jack Whitehall, a young stand-up whose confidence we would all have if we were like him – 20 year old dreamboat with a vocabulary as big as his future and a lovely haircut.  In what is a male dominated industry (and article) Holly Walsh offers a female perspective without ever alienating the male section of the audience. Her warm and off-beat style won her the Best Newcomer at the 2008 Chortle Awards.

Russell Kane

Russell Kane

Of course, it takes a massive amount of bravery to be a stand-up comedian but Russell Kane takes it even further by making his dad sound like Grant Mitchell minus the compassion. And then repeatedly dissing him. Kane is incredibly energetic and his machine-gun delivery is full of excellent word use and illuminating description as well as acute social commentary. Watch Russell Kane in action here

You may have already heard of Craig Campbell and Rhod Gilbert but they are worth a mention all the same. Both are already big-names on the stand-up circuit and they are certain to figure significantly, on stage and television, in 2009,  They share a commanding stage presence and deliver their well observed material with dramatic gusto.
Watch a clip of Craig Campbell here or Watch Rhod Gilbert in action here

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