Comedy institution The Laughter Factory today announces an all-star line-up to tour across the GCC in April.
UK comedy heavyweights Adam Bloom, JoJo Smith and John Fothergill make up a triple bill of funny – three A-list stand-ups normally spotted on TV shows like Mock the Week, and onstage at the Edinburgh Fringe.
The monthly “Best in International Stand-up” tour launches on Thursday 7th April at Moevenpick JBR, with gigs to follow across Dubai and Doha.
If you haven’t heard yet, all new for 2016 The Laughter Factory is now hosting both an evening “Comedy Brunch”, and a classier Supper Club concept.
See below for dates, details, bios, contacts and more.
Introducing the comics…
Comedy is all about timing – and Adam Bloom is a master of suspense. Not just a master, in fact, but a studied oracle in the art of “the pause” – the BBC commissioned him to make a documentary about pausing in comedy, which saw Bloom interview Ricky Gervais, among other A-list comics.
Onstage, Bloom is a veritable veteran, performing seven sell-out shows at the Edinburgh Fringe between 1996 and 2007. Then he stopped going. ”I got married in 2008,” is his explanation.
On the telly, Bloom sealed his celebrity status with appearances on hit UK shows, Mock the Week and Russell Howard’s Good News, while on the airwaves, Bloom hosted three series of his own BBC Radio 4 series, aptly titled The Problem with Adam Bloom.
Behind the scenes, Bloom is an in-demand joke-writer-for-hire, penning gags for competing comedians and celebs. But as he likes to say, “Writing jokes for people is like being Julia Roberts’ leg double – you can’t give an interview and say ‘those were my legs getting out of the Ferrari in Pretty Woman’. It wouldn’t be right.
Journalist, chat show host, rock roadie, author, bingo caller – JoJo Smith is a woman of many talents. But perhaps her greatest of all, is making people laugh. Smith’s gifts were honed during the 40-odd episodes of ITV chat show Funny Business that she directed and hosted – often outshining her celebrity guests, people like Jimmy Cricket, Lee Evans, Jo Brand and Rich Hall.
But off camera and on the stage, the gloves come off. JoJo isn’t just blue – she is “so blue she makes Jo Brand look like one of the nuns in The Sound of Music”, wrote UK broadsheet The Independent. In fact, Smith has a habit of scaring journalists; When she toured South Africa, the Cape Argus dubbed Smith “The Most Dangerous Woman in Britain” (we’re not sure the reporter in question has visited Newcastle).
In her previous life as a punk rock writer for Smash Hits, NME, The Face and Record Mirror, Smith interviewed “all her heroes” – The Clash, Ian Dury, the Sex Pistols – as well as “a million one hit wonders”.
She was later invited on the road as Dexy’s Midnight Runners’ PA – a job few would be mad enough to take. The experience formed the basis of her first novel, Searching for the Young Soul Rebels.
The names speak for themselves: John Fothergill was handpicked as a special opening guest act for Ed Byrne and Little Britain Live. On the goggle box, credits include Live at the Comedy Store and Live at Jongleurs. The critics love him, too. Even the ever-eclectic Guardian, who said: “Everything he says is funny, he looks like he was born onstage, under a follow spot, with a mic in his hand”. For real. We can’t say it any better than that.
In his previous life, John was a professional rocker in the band One Hand One Heart – who were managed by the-guy-who-discovered-Jimi-Hendrix, Chas Chandler of The Animals – and signed by both Epic and Sony.
The Laughter Factory, February tour dates
Thursday April 7th, 9pm – Mövenpick Hotel Jumeirah Beach, JBR
Friday April 8th, 9pm – Mövenpick Hotel Jumeirah Beach, JBR
Monday April 11th, 8pm – The Rose & Thistle, DOHA
Tuesday April 12th, 8pm – Grand Hyatt, DOHA
Wednesday April 13th, 8pm – McGettigan’s JLT4
Thursday April 14th, 9pm – Grand Millennium Hotel, TECOM
Friday April 15th, 9pm – The Gramercy, DIFC
Tickets, priced at Dh140, are on sale now from platinumlist.ae.
Follow us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/thelaughterfactory
And Twitter: @LaughterFactory
Introducing… The Laughter Factory “Comedy Brunch”
All-new for 2016, The Laughter Factory recently launched the UAE’s first “comedy brunch”.
That’s right: food, drinks and laughs, all under one roof… what could make a funner – or funnier – night?
The all inclusive-package offers comedy fans the chance to warm up for the show with an international buffet from a five-star hotel, alongside free-flowing house beverages (including hops, grape and short drinks).
The “evening brunch” package is available for two hours before the gigs (7pm-9pm) at the Mövenpick Hotel JBR and Grand Millennium TECOM venues only, and costs just Dhs320 (or Dhs280 for soft drinks) – including entry to the gig (normally Dhs140).
Group packages, including discounts on drinks inside the venue, are also available.
Call 04 355 1862 to book your brunch package today.
Our Supper Club
Comedy doesn’t have to be a rowdy pub affair – show some class by inviting your date or mates out to our all-new Supper Club concept.
At select venues, The Laughter Factory now offers an intimate evening dining experience, while you settle down ready for the show.
For just Dh120 extra, enjoy a two-course, pre-show meal from a contemporary set menu, all delivered straight to your table.
Place your full order at least one hour before the gig starts, to ensure the food reaches you before the comics take to the stage – because if there’s one thing comedians don’t like, it’s waiters interrupting the punchline…
The package is on offer at The Gramercy DIFC.
The comedy starts at 9pm prompt, so we advise arriving by 7pm to make the most of your evening. The full package costs Dh260 per head – including the gig, normally priced at Dh140 – with drinks available a la carte.
Call 04 3551862 or visit www.thelaughterfactory.com to make a booking today.
About The Laughter Factory
The Laughter Factory is the Middle East’s longest-running comedy night, proudly making the GCC laugh since 1997. Thanks to a longstanding partnership with the UK’s Comedy Store, The Laughter Factory hosts a fresh bill of three different professional comedians every month, many already familiar stars of the screen on hit UK TV shows.
With a reputation for quality and a sharp eye for talent, The Laughter Factory has showcased reams of A-list comics on their way to superstardom, including Michael McIntyre, Russell Peters, Ed Byrne, Dara O’Brien, Ross Noble, Jason Manford, Sean Hughes, Kevin Bridges and Frankie Boyle.
The Laughter Factory’s commitment to comedy has been recognised by numerous publications, winning several accolades over its two-decade history, including a Lifetime Achievement Award from Time Out Dubai in 2013.
Gail Clough (co-founder)
+97150 100 3074