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Jesterval comedy festival to bring the laughs back to Gateshead Quays

The Jesterval comedy festival returns to Gateshead Quays in June. We sent all of the comics on the bill one question to answer

Chris Ramsey: What are your top three hair products, and how long does it take you to do you hair of a morning?

Tears of orphaned unicorns, soil from a posh mans allotment and egg yolk. Not long, I tend to sleep hanging upside down to get the incredible volume you see me sporting on a daily basis.

Luisa Omielan: If you could ask Beyonce one question, what would it be? (and is there any truth in the rumour you’re going to do a follow up to your debut show called “What would Beyonce’s sister Solange do?”)

Hahahahhah I would love to do a What Would Solange Do? follow up but my next show is gonna be called ‘Famous with a Baby’ and I’m not writing it until it writes itself! I think most people wanna know what went down in the lift but I wanna know, does she ever get stressed with being so famous... and how does she stay so humble?!

Tiernan Douieb: What’s the best thing about performing stand up for kids?

There are lots of great things about performing for kids but probably the best is the heckles. They are never malicious, just things that children feel they need to tell you and they’re often completely bonkers. I’ve been told I look like a duck, that someone bit a zombie, that someone had travelled to the show from the moon that day and on and on. Really keeps you on your toes.

Sara Pascoe
Sara Pascoe

Sara Pascoe: What would be your favourite vegan breakfast, lunch and dinner?

There is a new vegan product called Tyne Chease. I met the brilliant Geordie lass who invented/makes it, she gave me some for free after a show and its the best anyone has ever managed vegan-cheese-wise. I would eat that at all three meals, with maybe an apple and some crackers.

Roy and Phil Walker: Roy, what’s your favourite catchphrase?

When everything is going your way, you’re in the wrong lane!

Phil, is there competition in your family to be the funniest Comedian?

Yes but I usually always win.

Lost Voice Guy: If you could transfer anyone’s voice to your iPad, whose would you choose?

I think I would have to choose Brian Blessed’s voice. I think it would be so much fun to say anything in his voice. My voice is very dull and monotone so I think I would just go and shout at people for no reason, just because I could.

Ed Byrne: What has been your most memorable gig in the North East up until now?

That would probably be May 2011, I recorded my 3rd DVD Crowd Pleaser at Newcastle City Hall. I knew it would be a good one.

Gein’s Family Giftshop: What is the best thing you’ve ever bought from a giftshop?

Collectively? Probably the dinosaur egg bath bomb, we had all saved up our money to buy a dinosaur egg bath bomb, took it home (from the natural history museum) popped it in the bath and the last one out of the bath (Kath) got to keep the dinosaur once the egg effervesced into oblivion. Individually? Rubbers.

Jason Cook: What are the first three things you would tell a tourist in Hebburn to see?

The fish and chip shop, Dhilons on station road, it’s amazing; The park down by the Tyne. Amazingly beautiful view of the river. Except at night when it’s often the amazingly beautiful view of teenagers drinking cider until they are sick. Like I did; Me mam’s house. Can’t give you the address but it is the centre of tea-making in the North East.

Paul Foot: Who is your style icon?

My style icons change with each Paul Foot fashion season. The current climate is “Space Casual” - so channelling an astronaut’s housewife or the sort of thing you might wear to a NASA karaoke night. My tailor Sir Burlington-Garter makes all of my clothes, they are environmentally awkward.

George Egg: What are the best and worst egg based puns you’ve seen in your reviews?

The hackiest one is ‘cracking’, as in ‘cracking up’ or ‘cracking jokes’ or even ‘cracking yolks’, that sort of thing. It’s done to death. The best was when someone pointed out I was from Brighton, as in Brighton and Hove Albumen. It was painful, but I liked the effort.

Patrick Monahan: What has been the most adventurous thing you’ve ever done?

A one-and-a-half summersault off a 10-metre diving board for a TV show called splash. Not only did I have to do it in Speedos, but I had to do it live on national TV to several million people. The highest thing I’ve ever jumped off before this was a garage roof with a bag of clothes, legging it from a house.

Daniel Sloss: What’s the best thing about playing a comedy gig on Tyneside?

Thanks to Kai Humphries I have a lot of friends down there, so in a way it’s like a second home coming gig for me. I feel adopted as I hear Geordie accent almost every single day of my life. And I have several family members from there too. So it’s just a really great part of the country for me to play in. So much fun to be had with the crowds and so much catching up to do with the reprobates I call my friends.

Andy Fury: What makes you furious?

Puns on my name.

Gavin Webster: Who would you say are the world’s three biggest sexists?

Vladimir Putin, The Pope and my wife.

Matt Reed: What three things couldn’t Sunderland live without?

Sunderland couldn’t live without a bus system to get them to better places. Also the Empire to inject a little class and probably the Nandos.

Kai Humphries: What are your three favourite things about Blyth?

Broadway circle, a roundabout that has its own Eco system. It has a hairdresser, Chinese, chip shop, florist, car parts shop, laundrette, off license... You could put a glass dome over Broadway circle and its inhabitants would survive just fine.

The people, for hundreds of years the people of Blyth have been dipping the same gene pool. Turns out this level of inbred pedigree makes for some really sound folk who are up for a laugh.

The Coast, we have an absolutely beautiful stretch of coastline that should global warming ever gift us with a real summer, would see hotels reaching for the skies.

Impro Comedy All Stars: Improvise the end to this question (and then answer it): Have you ever been in a situation when...?

Ian Coppinger: ... the audience suggested that you do a human triangle? Answer: Yes. We were performing to a packed out vicar street in Dublin, doing our impro show. We ran around the stage pretending to be acrobats but soon realised that we had better at least try it. We not only tried it but we managed it. The bottom layer was Andy smart, Steven Frost, and Phill Jupitus. The second layer was Steve Steen and Richard Vranch. I then had to get on top. I kneeled there, outstretched my arms and got the biggest reaction we’ve ever received; a standing ovation from 1,000 people. It was amazing.

Markus Birdman: Who is a better Birdman. You or Michael Keaton?

Markus Birdman
Markus Birdman

Weirdly I just watched Birdman on the plane back from New Zealand comedy festival. I’ve loved Michael Keaton since I saw Beetlejuice as a kid. If I was half as ace as him I’d be stoked! That said, he is acting as Birdman, but I am the real deal.

Mat Ricardo: What are the best and worst things to juggle with?

I’m not sure that there really are best things to juggle with, I mean lets face it, the best choice here is not to juggle at all, it’s an enormous waste of time, and just thinly-veiled attention-seeking of the shallowest kind.

As for the worst things - well, in Showman, my one man show, I juggle a few fairly inadvisable things - I recreate a trick that killed a fellow juggler live on stage in 1936, and then I go one better by juggling cordless electric carving knives jammed in the “on” position. So far, ladies and gentlemen, so good...

George Zacharopoulos: Who is your favourite Greek god, and why?

Zeus. the bookies favourite. And why not? He controlled thunder, was king of the gods had a mortgage-free house at the top of a mountain. Shortly after he overthrew his dad, Zeus freed his siblings and then won a war vs the Titans. Later, when the time came to split the world, he got the best bit, ie: the heavens, gave his brother Poseidon the sea-which is alright really, but Hades got the underworld like a fool. Finally, like any other King, Zeus enjoyed incredible success with the ladies and we named the biggest planet after him (Jupiter), which is admittedly very impressive. And if you are also a fan of rags to riches stories, Zeus achieved all that even though he was raised by a goat. Fair play to him.

Steffen Peddie: Please describe five of the 99 problems you mention in your show?

Well it’s hard to tell you as I don’t know what the problems will be! The audience supply the questions or “Problems” and I act as a happy agony uncle and help sort it out... or there is a bag of chips if I can’t.

However five things I have a problem with today are: People using the word ‘vintage’ at markets; cheese; distressed furniture; people not having indicators on Audi’s (or so it seems); Storage Wars.

Paul Sinha: What do you miss about being a doctor?

I can’t honestly say that I miss a thing. I was coasting along in a job that I neither loved nor hated, but involved an awful lot of hard work. It would have driven me insane to still be doing that job in my 50s. If I had to pick one thing, then I suppose the camaraderie was nice. But you do get plenty of that in comedy as well.

Micky Cochrane: Who were your stand up comedy influences? (and were you named after the baseball player Micky ‘Black Mike’ Cochrane?)

Rik Mayall, always loved him as a performer, Tony Law, could watch him do his thing all day and our very own Geordie guv’nor Gavin Webster. I was not named after the baseball player and I won’t be happy until I have knocked him off the first page of Google results. He’s been dead over 50 years it’s not like needs the publicity.

Kate Lucas: Who are your comedy idols? (and what is your favourite comedy song?)

My comedy idols are probably Eddie Izzard, Flight of the Concords and maybe Blackadder if characters count. My favourite comedy song is probably “Jenny” by Flight of the Concords.

Abi Roberts: What is your favourite Russian word/phrase and what does it mean?

Russians have an odd sense of humour, though they LOVE Monty Python, so my favourite Russian phrase is a Monty Python quote from the sketch about very bad translations: In Russian: Моё судно на воздушной подушке полно угрей; in English: “My hovercraft is full of eels”.

Jonny Pelham: What would be your top three style tips for a celebrity of your choice?

My celebrity would be Lionel Messi and I would like to see him in an Arsenal socks, Arsenal shorts and an Arsenal top. He would look fantastic.

Mick Ferry: When it comes to facial hair, who do you look to for inspiration?

James Finlayson.

Mike Milligan: Can you give an ambitions you still want to achieve?

I’m really enjoying the work I’m doing with Martyn Healy . Our new show combines nearly 30 years in comedy and media and we want to share what we’ve learned. As I’m getting a bit older, just the fun of entertaining people is enough. I’m grateful

Amy Gledhill and David Callaghan: Amy, tell us something nice and something nasty about David

Something nice: He is in many ways, is my enabler. I have a little idea in my head which I fully expect to get shot down and stamped on the second it leaves my lips but Callaghan is there with a YES, a PLAN and the kind of ludicrous ENTHUSIASM that will one day get us killed/arrested/a TV show.

Something nasty: He once brought me on to the stage in front of a particularly cold audience by bellowing, ‘WORST AUDIENCE OF THE FRINGE’ at them and walking off.

Nicola Mantalios-Lovett: What’s your favourite prop (and what do you use it for?) and what’s your best and worst impressions?

Favourite prop: My moose head. I use it for long bus journeys for a pillow and for one joke which is a complete groaner. My best impression is of my dad, he is from Greece and he is prejudice to most people which is equality in a way. My worst impression is of anyone who is not my dad.

Jimmy Cricket: What’s the best thing about being you?

Jimmy Cricket

Having the best job in the world!

Seymour Mace: What’s the best thing about being a comic in the North East?

I think the best thing about being a comedian in the North East is that it seems to be more accepting of idiots. We have a rich tradition of fools from Bobby Thompson through to Vic and Bob who have an innate silliness about them. Maybe it’s because we’re a bit out on our own up here or maybe we just love a daftie!

Sue Sweeney: What song would best provide the soundtrack to your life so far?

Ain’t No Mountain High Enough by Diana Ross.

Alfie Joey: When it comes to impressions, which three do you do best?

Joe Pesci, Bruce Forsythe and President Oba

Jesterval runs from June 5-14 in a laugh-making marquee on Gateshead Quays. For full line up and booking details, visit www.jesterval.co.uk . To see all the Q&As with the comics, visit www.thejournal.co.uk/culture


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