I started performing comedy and spoken word sets on the small-scale cabaret and comedy circuit. I premiered my debut solo show, Reshape While Damp, at the Edinburgh Fringe. Following a great reception, I took the show to FIRST: a Festival of Solo Performances, at the Tristan Bates Theatre, London. I also headlined Change, a festival of new writing for Pulse Ensemble Theatre in New York.
I’ve gone on to write and perform my own work across the UK. I enjoy experimenting with style and content and finding out what works well for audiences in different settings. My performance incorporates monologue, spoken word and song, and my stories can be poignant, surreal and funny – sometimes all at once.
In 2018 I had a very successful 2-week run at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe with my solo comedy theatre show, Despite Everything, Price Still Includes Biscuits. I also toured a story-cabaret show Truth and Truffles during 2017-8 through Live and Local, performing songs and true-life stories in rural venues with storyteller Cat Weatherill.
In 2019, I toured the solo show to Wolverhampton, Leicester, Birmingham and Burton-upon-Trent. I had a great run at the Brighton Fringe in May and the Buxton Fringe in July, with brilliant audiences all round. I had another excellent 2-week run in August at the Edinburgh Fringe.
In July, I delivered a creative travel writing piece and performed poetry at the Borders and Crossings conference at the University of Leicester. In the autumn, I co-organised and performed in the very successful ‘pARTy Lines – a Literary Cabaret’ for Birmingham Literature Festival. You can read a blog about it here
I also took my solo show to South Scarle Community Centre near Newark and performed a work-in-progress ‘Whose Christmas is it Anyway?’ for PILOT Nights at Warwick Arts Centre. I performed the piece again in Loughborough and Burton-on-Trent to very appreciative audiences.
2020 began with a great show in Leicester at the Cosy Club. But after that, so much was cancelled or closed due to the spread of Covid-19, If you are reading this, I hope you are safe and well.
During August and September 2020, I had a wonderful time as part of Live and Local’s ‘Living Room’ project. I worked collaboratively with residents in the ‘new’ village of Meon Vale in South Warwickshire to create a spoken-word piece for the community. Entitled ‘Snapshot Stories,’ the piece is based on true-life stories and experiences during the pandemic and also celebrates the place and its environment. We had a great response from the community and we collected material, recorded and filmed in Meon Vale during the 2-month period. BBC CWR featured the project on ‘Coventry Creates.’ In December 2020, following an active and public residents’ campaign, the community in Meon Vale learned that the development plans for the woodland had been withdrawn.
In January 2021, the film was featured in an online festival with theSpaceUK and was also shown online at the Brighton Festival Fringe and the Buxton Festival Fringe. You can read a review from Buxton Fringe here
In September 2021, I delivered a creative travel writing piece at the Borders and Crossings conference at the University of Kent.
It was great to be back on the boards again in 2022 at a range of rural venues via Live & Local and at the Buxton Festival Fringe. Listen to a podcast recorded during the festival!
This year, I was delighted to perform for the first time at the Everyman Theatre, Cheltenham in January. There was a lovely atmosphere in the Studio Theatre with full houses and a great audience response.
Alongside other members of Birmingham-based Big Script, we performed 7 new short plays, script in hand, to a full house at the Highbury Inn!
I’ve had a great tour to rural venues with Live & Local, performing to wonderful, receptive audiences. I’ve also just completed another Live & Local ‘Living Room’ commission with Rock Mill Centre, New Mills, Derbyshire, entitled ‘Stories of Home.’ It was brilliant to work with members of the community via conversations, workshops and interviews and to have so many people involved. On May 1st, local residents performed script in hand in Rock Mill Centre – in the smallest theatre in New Mills! Many thanks to Deb Pugh for direction, Owen Baldwin for sound tech and everyone involved in the project!
And now it’s full steam ahead to Buxton and Edinburgh Fringe, where I’ll be performing my new show ‘They May Have Even Eaten Ham!’ See ahead to the gigs page for full details.
Listen to an interview with Paul Levy of Fringe Review about my work – both writing and performing – recorded in Edinburgh in 2016. There is a later interview recorded at the Brighton Fringe 2019 here