Theatre is alive once again here in Liverpool, the Bombed-out Church is hosting the Liverpool Theatre Festival by Bill Elms Associates. Offering theatre from plays to comedy and even music. Its fair to say its been a rather odd few months with the Corona Virus but last night felt like theatre has never been away. Each pod was socially distanced, and it was seat service when it came to ordering drinks. Before entering your temperature is taken and hands are sanitised. The staff of the festival were on the ball when it came to safety. Last night’s entertainment was a comedy night from Laughterhouse Comedy. Opening the night was Compere Chris Cairns whose fast-witted humour had the audience laughing as soon as he started speaking. His humours and quick-fire nature started the night right.
The opening act was local comedian Neil Fitzmaurice, who you may have seen at many comedy nights in Liverpool or even on Peter Kay’s Phoenix Nights as DJ Ray Von and Peep Show as Jeff amongst others. Neil spoke about lockdown and having time with the family his open and honest tale of how he never wanted to be the nagging dad had audiences laugh as there were parents who could certainly relate to him. Some jokes were lost within the audience which is easily done when the show is outside and there are sirens going off on the outside of the church with no roof. But Neil handled it like a true professional.
Next up was 2020 Britain’s Got Talent (BGT) finalist Steve Royale he was every bit energetic and quick witted as he is on the show. He engaged with the audience at every opportunity. Not forgetting some clear and near impossible juggling but Royale made it look super easy. Although some of the jokes he told were said on BGT you still laughed like you never heard it before because he is a gifted storyteller. I hope he brings out a tour soon as I expect many would want to see it me included.
Headliner of the night was Daliso Chaponda, he was another BGT finalist from previous years. He came at us 100 miles per hour with his observational humour referring to life living in England. His genius story telling make situations we see every day hilarious. The beautiful thing about watching Daliso is that he laughs along with you. He makes it look like he is having a conversation with his friends. I loved him on BGT and I loved him more last night.
If you get chance to see theatre at the Bombed out Church in Liverpool then do it, the precautions they are taking are second to none. Whether we get to see theatre inside any time soon is uncertain. However, seeing theatre outside was a refreshing change and I hope it continues post virus. It was always hard to not mention coronavirus last night as we are in it and you can’t help but talk about it but even when it was being mentioned last night you were still able to have fun and just relax. Tickets can be found at the ticket quarter website. https://tinyurl.com/y3husxj7
Reviewer: Luke Stephenson
Reviewed: 12th September 2020
North West End UK Rating: ★★★★