When was the last time you LOL’d? I mean really laughed; an eye-streaming, bubble-snorting, belly-aching blast? It has not, all told, been a hilarious couple of years and good old-fashioned laughs have been in short supply.
Now we’re hoping to change that with the Evening Standard Big Comedy Night in association with Uber, an attempt — with some of the city’s coolest and most mascara-ruining comics — to get London laughing again.
The one-off live event, which takes place on September 7 at Underbelly Festival’s Spiegeltent in its new venue in Cavendish Square, will celebrate London’s best emerging comedy talent with a fabulous line-up that reflects the city’s dazzlingly diverse scene.
The show will be headlined by the British-Malaysian comic Phil Wang, whose first full-length comedy special recently premiered on Netflix and whose first book, Sidesplitter, is soon to be published. Appearing alongside him will be a brilliant trio of fast-rising comic stars. The Swedish-Chinese comedian and writer Evelyn Mok will be familiar to viewers of the BBC’s Mock the Week, Hypothetical on Dave and Comedy Central’s Stand Up Central. A fixture on Swedish TV comedy, she was named “a comic to watch” after her arrival in London by Time Out, the BBC’s New Talent Hotlist and the Evening Standard. She also won the Pleasance Indies Award for her 2017 Edinburgh Fringe debut show.
Huge Davies’s bone-dry deadpan delivery makes his surreal material, punctuated by absolutely ridiculous songs, even more hilarious. His debut solo show The Carpark was nominated for the Best Newcomer award at the Edinburgh Fringe in 2019 and his song Luigi’s Lament (yes, it’s about the Mario Kart character) written for the popular comedy and video games YouTube channel Mashed has had more than 13 million views.
Jessica Fostekew’s sold-out show Hench, about her experiences as a woman weightlifting in the gym, won Best Show at the 2020 Chortle Awards and was nominated for the same award at the Dave Edinburgh Comedy Awards in 2019. She’s now touring it around the UK. Fostekew is also an accomplished actress, who has appeared in Motherland, Trigonometry and the multiple Bafta-winning BBC drama Three Girls.
The show will be expertly knit together by our brilliantly charismatic MC: the actor, writer and comedian BabatuÌndeÌ AleÌsheÌ, star of Celebrity Gogglebox alongside his pal Mo Gilligan and one of the biggest names on the black British comedy circuit. AleÌsheÌ regularly performs for huge audiences at venues such as the O2 and Hackney Empire, and was selected to appear alongside Dave Chappelle in his live showcase The Process. He’s also a winner of the Amused Moose National New Comic Award and he’s a dab hand with the audience so be warned…
Tickets for the event will go on sale soon, but you can get to know our emerging stars in our new short film series as they ride with Uber around London, starting today. Go to standard.co.uk/culture/comedy to see the first of Mok’s shorts.
The Evening Standard’s Big Comedy Night in association with Uber takes place on September 7 at Underbelly Festival, Cavendish Square. Click here to book tickets