Monday, 2 March 2015

INTERVIEW: Ian Hall and Bruce Edhouse talk to us about all things Smashing

Leicester's newest monthly comedy night arrives with a bang (or should that be a smash?) on Wednesday 18th March at The Cookie. Club Smashing is the brainchild of Leicester mirth-merchants Ian Hall and Bruce Edhouse, who both had successful solo shows in the recent festival, as well as performing their first full show together as The Two Syds

Looking smashing in knitwear: Ian and Bruce

There is a general buzz about this night going around the local comedy scene at the moment, primarily because of the people involved and also because of the promise of something a bit different to your average comedy night. So, to give you the lowdown on what to expect from Club Smashing, Leicester Comedy Scene spoke to Ian and Bruce...

What made you want to start up a new regular comedy night in Leicester?

Bruce: "There are lots of good nights already on in Leicester, but I think we just want to develop something a bit different to the prevailing "compere/act does thing/compere/act does thing/compere/etc" format. But more to the point, and particularly recently during the festival, it feels like there's an audience here that's ready to embrace something different."

How would you summarise the ethos behind Club Smashing?

Bruce: "We want this to be a joyfully unique collective experience, with things happening here that nobody will see anywhere else. And everyone is welcome to be part of it!"
Ian: "We have a throbbing roster of wayward East Midlands talents who will perform on a regular basis, in various combinations, which will be well smashing."

Will there be much actual smashing going on?

Bruce: "That depends entirely on how much Tinny (owner of The Cookie) lets us get away with."
Ian: "To be honest, Robert Monkton dented the mic during 'An Hour of Ian' last year and a broke a chair in 'Out of Touch, Out of Time' and Tinny remained unphased, so anything less than arson is pretty much OK I reckon."

Your double act 'The Two Syds' went down very well at the recent festival - will you be continuing to work as a pair at Club Smashing?

Bruce: "Yes, we certainly will. But there are so many talented people round here we want to work with all of them as well. Sometimes we'll do things as a double act, sometimes it'll be neither of us, sometimes there might be three or four of us doing something... It's a fluid system. And that's good for Ian, as he often loses a bit of fluid whilst performing. He's getting on a bit."

Brand new retro: Look out for the distinctive branding

Which acts have you got on at the first ever Club Smashing? Will they be doing their usual material?

Bruce: "We will be co-compering and we have Matthew Hollins, Lucy Thompson, Dan Wallbank, Daniel Nicholas,Neil Johnston in tandem with Fergus Macdonald Caird and Lindsey Warnes Carroll. I'm sure each one of them will be a wonderful Buzz Aldrin to our Neil Armstrong - or at the very least they'll be that guy who went to the moon but never got off the spaceship and was just, like, sitting there. We just don't know yet! Let's just say each show will have a theme, and the first month's theme is "newness" so we'll all be embracing that theme."
Ian: "I'll be embracing the theme from hit 70's TV show The Double Deckers."

What are your hopes for the future of Club Smashing?

Bruce: "Hopefully it'll become something of a local institution in the vein of the unpredictable and much-missed Lions Eat Ice Cream. People still start conversations with "Were you there that night at Lions when..?", so in years to come I'll be happy if people say "Were you there that night at Club Smashing when..?"

Which do you prefer - the grunge band Smashing Pumpkins, Smash instant mash, or 'Super Smash Bros' on Nintendo Gamecube?

Ian: "I'd go Smash all the way for its iconic status as the mortar in the foundation of the 1970s, edging out the Nintendo massive - then erase the Smashing Pumpkins from history. I think it's for the best."  
Bruce: "I'd give Smashing Pumpkins a 5 out of 10, Smash instant mash 5/10, and Super Smash Bros 5/10 as well even though I've never heard of it. It's all about equality. All is calm. All is bright."

Club Smashing launches on Wednesday 18th March at The Cookie. Visit the facebook page for more silliness.

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