Rich Hall at the Quays...

Rich HallRich Hall

Sods law quite clearly states that if you have to be somewhere at a certain time the road sign that will direct you to your destination will have a mini-bus passing in front of it obscuring your field of vision.

I was only at The Lowry at the beginning of the year to see Henry Rollins so I thought that I knew how to get there… I didn’t. I think I need one of those satellite navigation systems bolted to the dashboard of my car, which would no doubt double my cars value in the process. Or I could have just checked a map beforehand. I managed to get into the car park, park the car and dash towards the exit. Remembering the trouble we had at the Trafford Centre I looked back over my shoulder to check the name of the parking zone. Luckily I was still half an hour early.

David O'Doherty was the warm up act. The Guardian apparently described him as “also on the bill”. Yes that is the David O'Doherty, the owner of not to be confused with any other David O'Doherty’s who also have web-sites. He was quite funny (I’ll let him use that quote for free on any advertising media). The only joke that I remember him telling is: Q: Who are the nicest people in the hospital? A: The ultra-sound people. That and the fact that he managed to wrench a myriad of orchestral sounds from his Casio keyboard makes me think that he’ll make it big in Dublin someday.

I’d seen Rich Hall on Have I Got News For You and also on QI and enjoyed his appearances so much that I bought, and read, his book Things Snowball. I honestly didn’t know that he did stand-up comedy until I found the tour dates and booked a ticket for tonight’s show. His delivery is just pure southern USA. Growly-voiced, laconic, non-smiling with the odd industrial strength expletive thrown in for good measure. He comes from the state of Montana (population 9) and so is in a perfect position to make mock of his countries president. I, for one, didn’t know that it only costs each American about 83 cents to keep George Bush in the Whitehouse every year. He also made fun of jolly old England: our £512 space program, the fact that we’re optimists driving cars that have sun visors and that the Royal Mail is now in profit thanks to people selling each other their junk on eBay. I think that he was just a little bitter that he was only in the Quays theatre and not in the, more prestigious, Lyric theatre next door. That, and the fact that, he had to share his dressing room with 4 shetland ponies, possibly didn’t help his mood. Rich did improvise a few songs based on the people in the front row. Lesley and Noel had one song dedicated to them, but the fact that Noel worked in IT support and that Lesley couldn’t remember how they met didn’t really get the creative juices flowing.

Rich finished the show by singing a heart-warming little song about one time boxer and full time grill maker George Foreman. The last stand-up piece was totally spontaneous and completely un-prompted.

Tom Cruise plays a cocktail maker… a pretty good cocktail maker too, until he has a crisis of confidence and can’t make cocktails anymore. Then he finds a good woman who restores his faith in cocktail making. Tom Cruise plays a race-car driver…

This describes the 4' 8" scientology dwarf’s entire movie career to a tee.

After the show I made my way back to the car park and managed to find my car. On a concrete post there was a sign with a black pedestrian silhouette on it with the words “Beware of Moving Vehicles” underneath. Isn’t that a little obvious in a car park? I ended up having to go back to the entrance where the only pay machine resides. £4 for an evenings parking seemed quite reasonable… until, on the way out, I noticed that all the barriers were up.

  • Posted on Thursday, 08 December 2005
  • Tagged with films gigs tv