BBC Best of Fest at Harpa, Reykjavik Comedy Festival October 24 2014
In true Icelandic fashion, the night’s festivities got off to a late start. Not that anyone minded. As such, there was an air of casualness and joviality that permeated the night—making it the perfect vibe to launch the Reykjavík Comedy Festival.
English comedian Sean McLoughlin MC’d the night, and performed his routine in between acts. His shtick was your typical dark-humoured, down ‘n’ out twentysomething, which proved a hit with the audience. Especially funny were his gags about his 36-year-old girlfriend, who he said was “a constant reminder that the good times end.”
Seasoned performer Joel Dommett (y’all may remember him from season one of Skins) was a highlight of the night. His experience of having his video game playing interrupted by loud housemate sex had the audience in peals of laughter.
Next up was local lass Saga Garðarsdóttir. She performed in Icelandic and from what I could hear, the crowd was most impressed. Her energy was infectious. A friend told me she made jokes about herself, old people and teenagers in a way people could relate to and consequently, laugh at.
Harriet Kemsley (who The Grapevine interviewed last week) brought her ditzy, awkward persona onto the stage next. Unfortunately, after YouTube-ing clips of her stand up all week, I recognized most of her jokes from past routines. However, for those seeing her for the first time, howls of laughter indicated they appreciated her humour about life in Shoreditch and as a medical receptionist.
Rounding off the night was the rubber faced Rob Deering. Rob set his segment apart by using loops, pedals and his guitar as integral parts of his performance. He had the audience singing along, requesting classic riffs and in fits of laughter.
All in all, the night was upbeat, engaging and humorous. The Brits do stand-up well, and tonight was no different.