A RECORDING of Michael McIntyre's Comedy Roadshow will be taking place at the Sunderland Empire Theatre on Sunday night.
It is the first foray into the North East, for the Bafta-nominated BBC1 series, which prides itself on showcasing a top-notch clutch of stand-up comedy talent.
Hosted by one of the most successful comedians of recent years, the Sunderland show will be appropriately headlined by North East stand up lady, Sarah Millican.
South Shields-bred Sarah is currently presiding over sell-out audience after sell-out audience at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, with her third Fringe show, Chatterbox.
But she will be taking a night off on Sunday to take the prime time slot at the 1,800-seater venue.
“Whoa, it’s at the Sunderland Empire?” said a wide-eyed Sarah when I asked whether she was excited about playing one of the region’s biggest theatres.
“That’s fantastic news. I’m really looking forward to it ... it’ll be nice to have a home crowd there. I hope they’re pleased to see me.”
Following a raft of glowing reviews north of the border, it’s a fair bet the crowd will be delighted to welcome her home.
Sarah will be joined by three fellow comedy sparklers, as well as Mr McIntyre himself who has his fair share of North East fans. He played two packed-out dates at the Metro Radio Arena last year.
Although the rest of the line-up has not been confirmed, the fact that the entire comedy industry is but a border away, seems to suggest that it should be a good one.
The resulting show will be aired on BBC1 in the autumn, to an estimated audience of five million, if the first series was anything to go by.
By that time, 35-year-old Sarah, who now lives in Manchester, will be in the midst of her first UK tour, which is currently standing at 50 dates, including a six-night run at Live Theatre in December.
Tickets for the recording at the Sunderland Empire on Sunday were allocated when the return of the series was announced earlier in the year, and cannot be purchased.