When: every other Wednesday, 8.30pm
Where: Afrobar, Reading
How much: £3
However, you won't be subjected to the usual variable quality of a free-for-all as the acts are all invited. "It's one step above an open mic night", Jack explains. "It's all about getting exposure. In fact, Anthony's already started: he's got his flies undone."
"You can see some of these acts for £15 in the commercial comedy venues", collaborator Anthony Simmonds chips in, his trousers now duly fastened. The night is a reaction against the approach taken by the larger chains. "I think it's the only night in Reading where you just get pure comedy all night." The idea is to show the kinds of comedians who are talented and capable, but haven't yet gained much mainstream recognition, as well as being an affordable and easy way for people to see comedy. A happy halfway house for both the acts and the audience.
Big Jack (alias John Jacklin) has always had an interest in stand-up. Surprisingly, the day job as a journalist for the Financial Times doesn't get in the way. One comedy course later, he is running this promising venue with Anthony.
Afrobar is a small place, but known as an intimate place to go for a friendly drink. On a busy night, you can get all of 60 people in there! The evening is already getting a cult following, however. As we're talking, several people come in and Jack seems to know them all by name.
Coming up at Big Jack's Laughter Club
Papa CJ - an Oxford-educated comic from India who also runs a charity called One Child that helps educate children in rural areas of India
Dominic Frisby - Upper Class Rapper / Ludwig the Bavarian
Helmut - German character applying logic to pub jokes
Tom Wrigglesworth - winner, 2003 So You Think You're Funny?, nominee 2004 Chortle best newcomer
Paul Kerensa - ginger bloke with a clipboard
Dave Ward - universally funny material