3/3/15 Comedy night at the Golden Fleece. This was a free night, so mostly people getting experience or trying new material. Jack Boyles opened, which may not have been the best idea. His style is very downbeat and as an opener this isn’t ideal. He did a pastiche of Michael McIntyre, which whilst very recognisable, wasn’t especially funny. However, it is all a learning curve. The next act was Ben Davis, who was similar in style to Boyles and ideally there would have been another com…ic separating them, as it did feel a bit like more of the same. He got some good laughs with his material, but didn’t build momentum. Perhaps if the running order had been different, he’d have had a better night. The 3rd comedian was Fran Jenking, who was a marked contrast. He was full of energy and confidence. He worked with the crowd and had a good stage presence. He’d make an excellent compere as he goes well beyond asking people what their name is and what they do. His Dear Deirdre bit does need a stronger end, but that is the thing with new material, you have to try it to find out. Incidentally, we could do with a moratorium on comedians saying ‘I’ll tell you a bit about myself’ as the first 3 did this. The man after the intermission was a comedy musical act, Jonathan Eve. He was capable and did add to the night, but would have perhaps been better doing a song between each comic, as I felt he sang in one key with a similar tune, just changing the words. However, he did go down well and I’m not a fan of musical acts, so this may be unjust. 5th was Patrick Draper, doing some new material, which went down extremely well. He has a chart which is a real laugh, but could perhaps be bigger so more people can see it. The joy is trebled by the sheer detail. He had a good night. Closing was Jon Pearson who I’ve seen a few times and have always enjoyed. He’s got confidence and presence and is talented. I think it safe to say that by common agreement he had a belter of a night. The venue itself needs a bit of work, though. There were too many people walking about and letting doors bang, as well as people talking and this didn’t help the acts. At times it must have felt like they were swimming against the ride.