Theatre and Dance
Glyn Doggett and David Ephgrave
Doggett and Ephgrave’s Comedy Job Lot!
Hitchin’s finest – and possibly only – comedy double act are previewing their first entirely solo show as part of the Hitchin Festival.
Doggett and Ephgrave's Comedy Job Lot
10 and 11 July 2009
Queen Mother Theatre Studio, Hitchin
Start time: 8.00pm
Tickets are available via the Hitchin Initiative Festival Box Office, at 01462 453336
The names may not trip off the tongue like Morecambe and Wise or Mitchell and Webb (yet!) but for the past six years, Doggett and Ephgrave have been writing and performing together and are going from strength to strength.
Now, for two nights only, they are bringing their first entirely solo show to the Hitchin Festival, giving audiences a tantalising insight into their slightly skewed take on the world.
The title of this hour-long exploration into their psyche is Comedy Job Lot and is a grab bag of songs, sketches and stand-up, where audiences will be treated to a whistle-stop tour through the everyday minutiae of their lives; everything from Star Trek to shadow puppetry!
They told us more about the show, their comedy and how they work together:
How would you describe your comedy?
David: The skewed take on the world [comes from the fact] that we see a lot of things that are going on around us and comment on them a lot. For example, one of the things that we feature in our show at the moment is certain magazines that I won’t name (I won’t say Take A Break or Pick Me Up!) that have the most ridiculous headlines that can’t be based in any reality. One of them recently was ‘My Baby Had No Eyes But I Thought He Was Sleeping’, so one of the things we do is a top ten of these ridiculous headlines. [But basically] we see things that are going on around us and comment on them.
Doggett and Ephgrave at Mostly Comedy
Glyn: It’s amazing. Sometimes when we’re putting stuff together we think ‘is this going to be funny or is it just us with our strange sense of humour?’ The top ten headlines was one of those things and it went down so well at our comedy night that we did another one!
David: Yes, we don’t need new material anymore, we just read those magazines!
This is an hour’s show which has come out of your normal comedy nights ‘Mostly Comedy’. How often do you do those?
Glyn: We do them every third Thursday of the month at the George in Hitchin. The next one is 23 July. What we’ve started doing as a double act with the comedy nights is stuff that’s much more like stand up with commenting and observation and that sort of humour, so that’s where the show has come from – we’ve put bits and pieces together from it make up Comedy Job Lot.
David: Essentially we compere at the comedy club but it’s the stuff that we use at the beginning to get things going that we’ve taken out and put into this show, but with some new stuff as well.
What are your audiences like? Does your comedy appeal to a wide range of people?
David: A wide range I think. Our shows can appeal to people on different levels. I teach drama and a lot of the kids who I teach have checked me out on YouTube and commented on the sketches that we’ve done so we think from that age up to anything really.
Glyn: Yes, ‘Comedy Job Lot’ is aimed at people aged 16 and upwards really – my parents love it and they’re in their 50s. We don’t do jokes as such, we don’t tell gags but I think our humour is observational so it reaches different people in different ways.
How long have you two been working together?
Glyn: About six years.
David: But we’ve known each other for ten. Bizarrely we share the same birthday although a year apart which is a bit weird. We met just before drama school [Hertfordshire Theatre School] when we were working together at the Market Theatre, I’d started drama school and Glyn was still at North Herts College. Then we went to drama school together and we kind of realised that we had the same sense of humour – and never looked back.
How did you discover that together you were funny?
David: I don’t think we have yet!
Glyn: [laughs] We’re part of a comedy writing group based in London called the Comedy Project. David had written something and I went in as a Company Manager. Then, the following year, we said ‘shall we have a go at writing something for it together?’ so we wrote a half hour sit com pilot for that and we built and built from there really.
Glyn Doggett and David Ephgrave
How do you decide what to put in front of an audience?
Glyn: I think the fact that we are a double act helps in that you have an instant editing capacity.
David: Yes, if it makes Glyn laugh then it’s probably funny and vice versa. If you’re writing on your own you could sit there for ages with a blank page thinking what can I write that’s funny. And also you get into a routine, we have a way of working now, and we have a style, so it gets easier and easier to think of things.
Do you know instantly whether something is working or not in front of an audience?
David: Yes, there’s a rhythm to it, you can tell by the reaction. When we do comedy though we only ever tend to do it once and then write new things. What we’ve done with ‘Comedy Job Lot’ though is to take the best of those bits so if they didn’t work you probably won’t be seeing them [in this show]! But we’ve been quite lucky with the reaction, people are starting to get our style now and we have a fairly good strike rate!
Glyn: Yes we do! And you’ll find with other things that because it’s personal taste it depends on the audience that night. If it doesn’t go down as well as we thought it would, sometimes that can just be the mood of the audience.
Do you have a classic straight man / funny man thing?
Glyn: No, we’re just two straight men! We’ve written a couple of sit com things and I’ve been the silly one and he’s been the more sensible one but that’s just real life really!
David: Yes, we have basic personas which we use quite a lot when we’re trying to write something quickly, but no, [generally] we both get a crack at the whip at being funny or being serious!
So what are your plans for the future as a double act?
David: Lots of different things really. We’d like to get into radio and television, we’re just trying to launch ourselves as a duo of writers who can also perform and present.
Doggett and Ephgrave
Glyn: It’s looking into loads of different areas as a double act. Obviously we’re a comedy double act but it’s also about presenting and just talking and giving your views on subjects. Together we bounce off each other quite nicely so it would be nice to do that in a radio or TV environment.
David: But it’s very easy to pigeon hole people in this profession. I’m a musician and an actor and people think you can’t do both. And when people see you in comedy they can’t imagine you acting in a sit com or vice versa so it’s about trying to do a bit of everything!
Doggett and Ephgrave's Comedy Job Lot is at the Queen Mother Theatre Studio on the 10 and 11 July 2009.
Their next ‘Mostly Comedy’ night is on Thursday 23 July at the George in Hitchin, where you can enjoy a mix of stand-up, sketch comedy, music and open mic acts. Doors open at 8.15pm, first act on at 9.00pm. Admission £4.00.
ACTS INCLUDE: Stand-up from Nick Helm, Gráinne Maguire and Dec Munro - plus magic from Dan Rogerson and music from David Ephgrave. Full line-up TBC.
last updated: 29/06/2009 at 16:32
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