Irish comic is punchline perfection

IRELAND is well known for its rich comedy tradition, writes Kate Ferguson. From veteran comic Frank Carson whose famous catchphrase its the way I tell em ended a thousand punchlines, to Dermot Morgan whose show Father Ted made staying in on Friday nig

IRELAND is well known for its rich comedy tradition, writes Kate Ferguson.

From veteran comic Frank Carson whose famous catchphrase 'its the way I tell 'em' ended a thousand punchlines, to Dermot Morgan whose show Father Ted made staying in on Friday nights cool (well, sort of).

Neil Delamere is the latest disciple of Irish comedy to make a splash.

Born in Edenderry, County Offaly in 1980, Delamere cut his teeth on the comedy fringe circuit and is a regular face at the Edinburgh festival.


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"Live comedy is my first love. It is where a performer is at their purest - there are no producers telling you what to do." Delamere said.

"When I go off and do other bits for TV or radio I often think that is a bit like doing a poll dance open to all the public, but the private dance is kept for the stage show."

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Delamere's comedy is interactive. His material comes from his observations of real life and he is well known for involving the audience in his high jinx.

"I like to mess around with the audience, that way each night I perform it is a little different."

So has this audience participation ever backfired?

"I had a great heckler in Finland. I was in the middle of performing my set when he walked straight up to me on stage and shouted out 'I am so stoned!'.

"Well, you know you are in Finland when a fella is that stoned out of his face but can still speak a second language perfectly.

"He looked like he was having a great time - I wish I could say it was down to my set."

Neil Delamere is playing at the Soho Theatre, Dean Street, 8pm, August 2-7.

Tickets �12 on 020 7478 0100.

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