As the students move back into their digs, comedy returns to Manchester too. Well, it hasn’t really been away (check out August’s blog if you don’t believe me) but there is certainly an increase in laughs out there as the touring shows gear up for the autumn and the monthly shows return after a summer break.
As ever The Frog and Bucket and The Comedy Store are both offering a whole month of great stand-up shows on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights as well extra shows. The Frog’s amateur night is every Monday in the form of Beat the Frog whereas the Store has King Gong once a month (4th), plus Alex Boardman presents his favourite New Comedians on the 18th. New Material night at the Frog is WIP on the 14th and New Stuff on the 11th and 25th at the Store.
In addition the Frog has the Laughing Cows all-women night on the 25th and Lip Sync Battle on Tuesday 27th and is also branching out into Wythenshawe on 24th Sept. Over at the Store there’s Panel Beaters on the 14th where four top comics compete against each other and a special night with John Challis who played Boycie in Only Fools and Horses on 21st Sept.
Amy Schumer, O2 Apollo, Sat Sept 3, £50 – £110
The creator, co-writer and star of Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer tours Europe taking in just three dates in the UK including Manchester.
At the end of the month on 27th Sept this well-loved gig celebrates its 19th birthday and, as well respected as it is, the special guests it promises will be just that. Before then though there are headline performances from clever gagster Ivo Graham on 6th Sept, a multitude of characters from Will Franken on 13th and mind reader Doug Segal on the 20th.
Tapeface, The Lowry, Wed 7 – Fri 9 Sept, £16
The artist formerly know as The Boy With Tape On His Face presents a highly theatrical version of his old and new entirely wordless material. Check him out whether you’ve seen him live before or just on America’s Got Talent, you won’t be disappointed.
John Hegley, The Lowry, Sun Sept 11, £5.50 – £12
Two shows in a day from the bespectacled poet. Firstly there’s the afternoon show I Am A Poetato where he dips into animal alphabet of poems then in the evening, with his mandolin, he presents a performance of old and new material.
Sue Perkins, The Lowry, Sun Sept 11, £27.50
The comedian and presenter divulges some racy (probably) Bake Off secrets and reads from her memoir Spectacles.
Trapdoor Comedy, Various venues, Mon 12 – Wed 14, £5
The monthly Trapdoor returns with the usual three gigs in a week. Stockport housewife and mother of five Mrs Barbara Nice headlines all three and Tony Basnett comperes. Whereas sharp Scot Fern Brady is at the Railway on Mon 12, at Solomons on Tues 13 is Manchester boy Brennan Reece and The Old Monkey on Wed 14 sees a performance from Leicester comic Jim Smallman.
Limmy Live! The Lowry, Tues Sept 13, £28
The Glaswegian star of The Limmy Show and contributor to Charlie Brooker’s Weekly Wipe brings his roster of characters and skewering humour to Salford.
Barking Tales, Zombie Shack, Wed Sept 14, £6 on the door, £5 in advance
Returning from a run at the Edinburgh Fringe, Manchester’s monthly humorous take on mental health sees a set from Canadian Bobby Mair whose material is never far from the bone.
Murray Lachlan Young, The Lowry Thu Sept 15, £10 – £12
So rock ‘n’ roll a poet is Lachlan Young that he’s BBC 6 Music‘s poet in residence. Expect satirical verse and tack sharp stand-up in between.
Pick of the Fringe Dancehouse, Fri Sept 16, £17 (£16.50 conc)
The Edinburgh Fringe may be over but here’s a chance to catch some of the best of it in Manchester. With absurdist Aussie Sam Simmons, the deceptively meandering James Acaster and the politically astute Nish Kumar.
Romesh Ranganathan, The Lowry, Mon 19 & Tue 20 Sept, £19.50
The critically acclaimed comedian with his latest show Irrational in which he attempts to explore the rationale of his worldview.
The sausage returns. The mysterious Mister Javier headlines while the gentle but hilarious Silky opens up. Acts will be in between. A bit like a sausage sandwich.
Ian Smith, The Lowry, Wed Sept 21, £12 (£10 conc)
The Goole native with his third solo show. Whereabouts covers bum bags, Noah’s Ark and mannequin burglar deterrents in a show with more call backs than a yoyo.
George Egg, The Lowry, Thu Sept 22, £11-£13
In Anarchist Cook Egg cooks a three-course meal entirely on the objects found in a hotel room, the inspiration for which came from a bored night on tour. No mean feat.
Jonathan Pie Live! The Lowry, Sun 25 & Mon 26 Sept, £13.50
The heavyweight reporter transfers to live Children in Need coverage, but manages to lose his sh*t anyway. Tom Walker recently returned from a run at the Fringe with his headcase newscaster character.
Comedy Night, Antwerp Mansion, Sun Sept 25, free
The Rusholme comedy night in the lovely crumbly mansion house returns with Geordie Dave Johns who is the star of Ken Loach’s latest film I, Daniel, plus Lukas Kirby, Hannah Platt and Kevin Caswell-Jones. Roland Gent emcees.
Comedy Bang Bang, The Dancehouse, Sun Sept 25, £16
American comic and writer Scott Aukerman began the Comedy Bang Bang podcast back in 2009 and has featured some notable guests over the years. Here Paul F. Tompkins and Lauren Lapkus join a totally improvised programme.
Sidekick Comedy, On Bar, Mon Sept 26, £2
This month with the boombastic Vince Atta and his beat boxing funnies, plus the wonderfully acerbic Ellen Tomlinson and in support Ben Sutton and Thom Bee. Kate McCabe hosts.
Simon Evans Lowry, Wed Sept 28, £13-£15
Arch of joke and eyebrow, Evans takes on economics in his latest show In The Money. You’ve probably seen him on the telly at some point cos he’s been there.
Red Bastard, The Lowry, Wed Sept 28, £10 – £12
Nothing is secret from Red Bastard, don’t say you weren’t warned. Aiming to break down all social boundaries Red Bastard creeps about in a crimson onesie revealing your innermost thoughts. Quite racy for a Wednesday night really.
Bec Hill and Tiernan Douieb, The Dancehouse, Fri Sept 30, £8
Dead Cat Comedy presents an hour each of Hill and Douieb. Hill showcases both old and new material united in her unique style while Douieb offers musings and gags about the general upset of everything.
By Marissa Burgess, Comedy Editor
Main image: Barbara Nice, Trapdoor Comedy