Carrott and McGowan

An Evening Shared with…

Jasper Carrott and Alistair McGowan

Belgrade Theatre, Coventry


A PACKED audience enjoyed an evening shared with Jasper Carrott and Alistair McGowan and so did I.

To be honest, Jasper Carrott had me in tears! It was so lovely to reacquaint with him as a stand-up comedian – and he topped off his two sets with some of his bawdy versions of well-known songs. He was obviously struggling with his voice – but nothing stopped him.

He reprised and developed his wonderful obsession with car insurance claim forms – I loved in particular one from the old days – “I turned out of my drive and hit a bus – it was five minutes early!”

Jasper Carrott said that he was often asked why he isn’t on television anymore and responds – “I can’t cook!”

It is good to see the Belgrade offering successfully a broader programme than just theatre. I saw Alistair McGowan as Professor Higgins in Shaw’s Pygmalion and thought at the time that he needn’t have opened his mouth; his hands are so expressive.

He kicked off this evening with his impressionist set which was wonderful and again the thought occurred that he is wasted on the radio. He has the wing span of a sea eagle and the hands of a giant and they talk on their own! 

He started by explaining about the evening: half an hour from him then Jasper, interval and then another half an hour from him and then from Jasper, and continued with us on a piece of string – then another half an hour, then Ken Dodd comes on round about Friday!

Alistair McGowan announced early on to rapturous applause that this was a Trump-free zone; in fact he had gone off Politics in its entirety but talked about his early days on Radio 4’s Week Ending and his role on Spitting Image as Paddy Ashdown. He had written a poem about getting older and turning into his father – clever…

I’m turning into my Father

But I’d rather


His impressions, based mainly around the ‘comedians’ came thick and fast and included a rich variety Jo Brand, Sarah Millican (hysterical!) and Diane Abbott.

It was a great plan to juxtapose the two legends with differing talents – and worked very well. To 16-03-17

Jane Howard


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