JASON Manford, currently touring his new stand-up show, had the packed Royal Hall at the Villa Marina in stitches on Friday evening.
On his first visit to the Isle of Man, the proud Manc was full of praise for the island, particularly our low tax rates.
Although he was shocked that there’s no 24-hour Asda, no multiplex cinema and was slightly concerned when his taxi driver, on the trip to Douglas from the airport, told him to wave to the fairies.
Jason gave an insight into life on tour, with various humorous references to his recent speedy exit from The One Show, and family life with tales of nappies, sleepless nights and the responsibility of choosing the right name for your child.
‘Barry the baby’ brought the house down.
Following his story about his 11-year-old brother’s favourite animals at Chester Zoo – the dangeroos – I’ll be keeping an eye out at the Wildlife Park. If they hang out at the lions’ area at the zoo – the sign says ‘these animals are dangerous’, it took me a while to get it – perhaps they’ll be between the lynx and the wallabies in the Curraghs.
The references to his mother’s mispronunciation of various words and phrases, Prince Philip’s gaff when meeting dance group Diversity after the Royal Variety Performance and being a guest on Jonathon Ross’ show with fellow guests Mickey Rourke and Robert Smith from the Cure had the audience rolling in the aisles.
Throughout the performance there was some heckling, as you’d expect at a comedy show.
Jason dealt with them in a way that perhaps made them wish they hadn’t opened their mouths.
Personally I don’t understand the heckling business.
Much has happened since the 29-year-old announced his two dates at the Villa last year, not all of it good.
The Manchester City fan has been in the headlines for the wrong reasons as well as the right, hence his tale about his hasty exit from The One Show last year.
The Salford-born comedian has been compared with Peter Kay, inevitably as they hail from the same area of England and are proponents of similar styles of comedy.
Jason began his career in 1999 while working at the Buzz Comedy Club upstairs at the Southern Hotel in Chorlton, Manchester. He was collecting glasses when a performer didn’t arrive for an evening set and so the 17-year-old Jason stepped in to fill the gap. It was an event which marked the beginning of his comedy career. Six gigs later he was crowned the City Life North West Comedian of the Year.
After winning several smaller awards, Jason was nomiated for the Perrier Award in Edinburgh in 2005 for his show Urban Legends. He has rarely been out of the public eye since.
Jason also performed at the Royal Hall on Saturday night and his tour continues until the end of November.