RAISING THE ROOF: CHARITY COMEDY NIGHT

Tuesday 16 April

Backyard Comedy Club

In aid of Refugees at Home


19:30 – 22:30
Backyard Comedy Club231 Cambridge Heath Road
London E2 0EL
Join us for an all-star comedy night in aid of tremendous charity Refugees at Home. Since they were founded in 2015, Refugees at Home have connected over 1,000 asylum seekers and refugees in need of accommodation with people who have a spare room to share and help them get back on their feet. Come have an enormous laugh with us and help us help them help more people.

JOSH WIDDICOMBE

After over a decade on the circuit and the air waves, Josh has become one of the most well-loved and respected acts on the circuit. He's a master at wringing every last drop of comedy from any subject, as well as having a lightning quick comedy mind. In his early years he cut his teeth supporting huge comic talent such as Stephen Merchant, Kevin Bridges, Michael McIntyre and Alan Carr, and has since gone on to have two sell-out UK tours and two sell-outs runs at the Edinburgh Festival, as well as an Edinburgh Comedy Awards Best Newcomer nomination.

Since then he has become a regular on our screens, making appearances on Live At The Apollo, Would I Lie To You, Have I Got News For You, Celebrity Mastermind, QI, Mock the Week and 8 Out of 10 Cats. If that weren’t enough, he has also received much praise hosting for Xfm and Radio 5’s Fighting Talk and been part of a team that has received multiple BAFTA nominations and RTS awards for a pretty damn famous show on one of the UK's biggest TV channels. Safe to say, seeing him up close in a comedy club, rather than an enormodome is an opportunity not to be missed!

“The sort of gentle confidence, low-key charisma and one-for-all-the-family charm which could see him selling out enormous stadiums in a couple of years.” The Times

“His talent for comedy is priceless.” The Evening Standard

“This is one of the most individual, accomplished, hilarious and unforgettable hours I have had this year.” The Scotsman

“Shaping up to be the British Seinfeld.” London Is Funny

ED GAMBLE

Ed is one of the finest gag writers and storytellers on the circuit today. A comic at the absolute peak of his powers, he is a regular on Mock the Week and recently made his debut appearance on Live at the Apollo.

He has co-written and appeared in four series of Greg Davies’s Man Down, along with appearing on Drunk History, Dave’s One Night Stand and Sweat the Small Stuff. Ed is also one of a handful of British comedians who have performed stand-up on the US TV show Conan. Ed has appeared on Russell Howard’s Good News as both a solo stand up and alongside Ray Peacock as part of the double-act Peacock & Gamble. Ed and Ray remain the only act to have made a return appearance on the show.

On stage, Ed is currently on tour with his latest show Mammoth, which sold out the entire run at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in 2017 including extra shows added every weekend. This is his largest nationwide tour to date, including three nights at Leicester Square Theatre. Ed previously won a Chortle Award in 2014 for Best Compere and has provided national tour support for Greg Davies’ tours in 2017, 2013, and 2012 as well as tour support for Russell Kane and Chris Addison. Basically, he's a bit bloody good.

“An ability to open his mouth and spontaneously say something hysterically funny.” The Guardian

“Attention-grabbing liveliness and considerable flair.” Daily Telegraph

“Gamble is a powerful, compelling orator… there’s no mistaking that this is a super show from a comic who may be about to become more of a force in the game.” Chortle

AISLING BEA

There have been few rises more meteoric in British comedy than Aisling Bea's. Since winning the prestigious So You Think You're Funny? competition in 2012 she has barrelled through the comedy world with irresistible momentum. She can now be seen on almost everything that's good on British TV, including as team captain on 8 Out of 10 Cats, a panellist on QI, doing the strange bidding of Greg Davies on Taskmaster or showing off her impressive acting chops on The Fall. Wherever she is and whatever she's doing audiences never fail to be won over by her superstar sparkle mixed with everyday charm.

"A masterclass in high-impact entertainment." Evening Standard

"An hour of high-energy comedy that is puppyishly irresistible." Independent

"Caustic, sarcastic, yet hugely lovable." The List

TEZ ILYAS

Tez Ilyas was born and raised in Blackburn, Lancashire, and is of Pakistani heritage. His reputation for delivering smart, sharp and powerfully satirical content has fast established him as one of the most exciting rising stars in British Comedy.
In 2015 Ilyas achieved phenomenal success with his debut stand up hour TEZ Talks. A sell out run at the Soho Theatre and his own Radio 4 series based on the show followed, with a second series quickly being recommissioned. In 2016, his highly anticipated follow up show Made in Britain went on to sell out every single performance (including extra shows) at the Edinburgh Fringe and gained spectacular critical acclaim, with a smash hit nationwide tour in 2017. His third show Teztify once again delivered a spectacularly powerful, provocative and brilliantly funny hour of topical stand up, delivering to packed out audiences night after night.

Tez has since appeared on Live at the Apollo, The Last Leg, Mock the Week, Live From the BBC, Man Like Mobeen, Live from the Comedy Store, Kevin Hart’s Live from Montreal, The Now Show and many more. His 2018 Ted Talk Made in Britain – which explored Tez being both British and Muslim, was so successful that it began trending on Twitter

“Blackburn-born Ilyas has a slickness more reminiscent of US comics, and the gags to back it up, though his most prized asset could yet be his bold, subversive streak." The Guardian

"Radiantly entertaining." The Times

"A vital discussion of some of the most difficult issues facing this country." Daily Telegraph

ANGELA BARNES

After a career in health and social care, Angela Barnes decided to realise a long held ambition and give comedy a go. Within a couple of years she had won the 2011 BBC New Comedy Award and became a finalist at the 2011 Latitude Festival New Act of the Year competition. Since 2011, Angela and her witty world view have been catapulted onto numerous radio and television shows including appearances on Live at the Apollo, Mock the Week and BBC Radio 4’s The News Quiz. She is always a winning combination of warm, witty, wise and bawdy as hell. She's the comedy big sister we all deserve.

"Like all the best comics, she manages to articulate a singular perspective while making it seem like a universal truth. And then she put jokes in it. Harder than it looks." The Guardian

"Brilliantly funny." Sarah Millican

"A beautifully paced performance that was aided by the consistent quality of her jokes, many of which showed a great skill with self-deprecation." Chortle

JONNY & THE BAPTISTS

One of the UK’s hottest live musical comedy acts with ever-increasing live audiences from several hit tours and festivals, Jonny & the Baptists have been regulars on BBC Radio 4’s The Now Show and once topped the iTunes Comedy Chart with single ‘Farage’. They have also supported Mark Thomas on tour and recently appeared on the BBC’s Live at Television Centre. Alongside, Jonny Donahoe has been nominated for a New York Drama Desk Award for his hit one-man show Every Brilliant Thing on international tour, while Paddy Gervers has a cult following for acclaimed podcast ‘Podshambles’.

“Spirited comedy…broad, daft and punchy…politically energised… raucously silly." The Guardian

“The political edge of 80s alternative comedy… a pop soul voice to win X Factor.” Stewart Lee, The Observer

“Musical comedy’s rising stars.” The Sunday Times

“Fieriness and heart… The enthusiasm, avidity and passion of the band radiate well after the gig has finished.” The List

IMRAN YUSUF

Imran Yusuf is renowned as a skilful raconteur who seamlessly weaves socio-political satire with heartfelt introspection in his charmingly endearing trademark styling. Languid, punchy, cheeky and utterly loveable, Imran has established himself as a truly unique voice in the world of comedy.

Imran is of East-African Indian descent, born in Mombasa, Kenya but raised in London with a brief stint studying illegally in the USA. Imran has travelled much of the world including Israel/Palestine, Jordan and Saudi Arabia during the Lebanon Crisis in 2006 in an all-encompassing pilgrimage for which he quit his job and spent his savings.

In 2010, he presented his debut solo show at the Edinburgh Festival. The show, “An Audience with Imran Yusuf”, was part of the Laughing Horse Free Festival and it was Imran’s intention to develop his craft and material at the Fringe whilst at the same time keeping under the radar of the UK Comedy Industry and Press. However, word about the show got out and within a week Imran had gained the first of a collection of 5 star reviews, which led to him being nominated for Best Newcomer in the Foster’s Edinburgh Comedy Award 2010 (He was the first performer from The Free Festival to be nominated in the history of the Awards). All of this whilst fasting between sunrise and sunset in observation of Ramadan.

Since then Imran has appeared on Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow, completed several UK tours and been instrumental in the success of the first ever “HaLOL” comedy night to celebrate the growing talent of British Muslim comedy in the UK.

"Intelligent, thought-provoking and laugh out loud funny.” Time Out

“Imran Yusuf is an immensely likeable comedian with a cheerful, confident delivery. His material manages to be friendly and accessible and at the same time thought-provoking.” The Scotsman

“Sharp, passionate and uplifting.” Daily Telegraph

AND YOUR MC:

BEN VAN DER VELDE

Ben Van der Velde is a stand-up comedian, actor, improviser and presenter, who, over the past few years, has spread joy and nonsense to all four corners of the British Isles, as well as Greece, Denmark, Sweden, Switzerland, Estonia, Latvia, Finland and Norway.

He is a regular host and act for respected British comedy clubs such as The Stand, Komedia, The Backyard, The Glee, Covent Garden Comedy Club and Top Secret Comedy, as well as hosting stages for Bestival, Festival No.6, End of the Road and Sunday Papers Live. He also has taken commissions to perform a voodoo re-marriage ceremony, founded the Church of the Holy Kazoo with comedy legend Mark Thomas, walked the entire London Underground network to raise money for The Refugee Council and even took part in experiments at The Royal Society that revealed him to have the most infectious laugh of any human, rat or monkey.

“Highly promising…an accomplished comic.” Time Out

“Wonderfully improvised riffs showcasing his impressive spontaneity and sharp tongue.” Edinburgh Festivals Magazine

“The perfect comedy club host – he is a master of audience interaction. The audience weren’t just warmed up, but pretty hysterical even before the first act of the night hit the stage.” Huffington Post