STAR ATTRACTION: Cannon and Ball
STAR ATTRACTION: Cannon and Ball

COMEDY legends Cannon and Ball along with TV favourite Alistair McGowan head the line-up for comedy heading for the dale in the coming weeks.

Teesdale’s Funny Way To Be Comedy has organised nine headline shows for its winter/spring 2019 programme in Barnard Castle.

The season kicked off this week when Britain’s Got Talent’s Cal Halbert performed the first of three “pop-up” comedy gigs.

The second “pop-up” show takes place on Wednesday, January 23, at Cafe 15 and Curlew Bookshop, in Market Place, Barnard Castle, as Lee Kyle’s tour show Kicking Potatoes Into The Sea visits the town.

Then at The Witham on Tuesday, February 5, Edinburgh best newcomer nominated Lauren Pattison will present her second show, Peachy.

Each pop-up show will also feature a support act.

The main comedy season begins on January 26 with Justin Moorhouse.

These days Justin’s not certain about anything apart from his uncertainty. On top of this the golden age of the Northern straight white male comedian has gone the way of the dinosaurs. How will he adapt if he wants to survive? What next for this Northern joker?

The UK’s number one comedy magician, Pete Firman, makes a welcome return with his new tour show Marvel on February 8.

Satirist and political impersonator Matt Forde will be giving his take on the UK’s break-up from the EU with Brexit Through The Gift Shop on February 20.

Tom Stade is one of the most prolific and engaging stand-ups of our time. Join the Canadian comedian, as he attempts to figure out exactly where he fits into this emerging new world.

He is a regular on TV, including shows such as Channel 4’s Comedy Gala, BBC One’s Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow, The John Bishop Show and Live at the Apollo.

April brings a trio of blockbuster shows featuring the bad boy of Strictly Come Dancing, a legendary comedy duo and the UK’s number one impressionist.

On April 10 Seann Walsh brings his After This One I’m Going Home tour show to Barney.

Then on April 12, an appearance from Cannon & Ball exemplifies what a varied season the comedy club has to offer. Cannon & Ball present an evening of their own unique brand of humour.

There will be unforgettable sketches, songs, storytelling and an audience Q&A session. This magical and intimate evening is a treat for all comedy and variety fans of all ages.

Alistair McGowan is an impressionist, stand-up comedian, actor, writer and, latterly, pianist.

After the success of his recent piano album Alistair McGowan premieres a brand new unique show on Wednesday, April 24, which brings together all his talents.

He will play tracks from his album and some other short classics piano pieces of music. Expect a lot of beautiful music, some interesting stories and a sprinkling of his trademark impressions.

As the Edinburgh Festival draws closer, April 26 brings the first of this year’s work in progress evenings with two full shows.

Jayde Adams was nominated for best newcomer at the 2016 Edinburgh Comedy Awards, while Rich Wilson is regarded one of the country’s finest comedians and best MCs.

Moving into May, Andrew Maxwell is a very fine Irish comedian and BAFTA Award winner who brings Showtime to the town on May 9.

He is known for his eagle-eyed, passionate current-affairs comedy, showcased in his many appearances on a vast array of radio and TV shows.

Funny Way To Be promoter Peter Dixon said: “We continue to try our best to programme a range of shows, including some priced at just a fiver, providing something for everyone.

“Most of the 12 shows are recommended as 14-plus age restriction, with some even lower.

“During this season we will produce our 150th show. We regularly attract people from all over the north of England to Barnard Castle and very much welcome audience members old and new.”