Jason Manford gets ready to return to Croydon for new show
Jason Manford has a refreshingly honest sales pitch for his latest show, writes Jim Palmer.
He tells Vibe: "The way I have been selling the show is, if you’ve seen us before - like on telly or live -and you liked it, then you’ll really like the show. It’s the best one I’ve done up to now.
"But if you have seen us before and you didn’t like it, you won’t change your mind.
"That’s my honest assessment.
"No-one’s going to go ‘oh right, he’s doing something new and innovative’. It’s what I’ve always done but new."
The Salford comedian brings his First World Problems tour to Fairfield Halls next month.
The latter town has some ripe memories for Jason from when he was cutting his teeth as a youngster.
He says: "When I was on the circuit, a couple of the toughest gigs were in those areas.
"Especially as an unknown 19-year-old northerner coming down doing a gig in Croydon was quite hard work.
"Because I started stand-up so early it was hard because if you’re 50 years old, looking at a 19-year-old on stage you’re thinking ‘why do I care about his world view’.
"I feel like I’m better with age I’ve got to this point now, mid 30s, and I’ve got kids, a mortgage and I’ve had a life and experienced things."
Though it is easier in that respect, his fame and the weight of expectation makes putting a show together tougher.
He says: "It’s a lot harder work now than it used to be, even though you think the hard part is getting people there. But once they’re there, it’s meeting and beating their expectations."
Luckily for Jason, inspiration is often forthcoming.
He says: "I am always jotting stuff down or things happen and you think ‘there might be something in that’. I’m surrounded by funny people.
"I’ll always put myself into positions where I think ‘there might be something in this’.
"I’ll get invited to some things that most people would say no to and I think ‘you know what, I might just come along. There might be five minutes in it'."
Jason Manford, First World Problems, Fairfield Halls, Park Lane, Croydon, February 6, 8pm, £22.50, Fairfield.co.uk, 0208 688 9291, www.fairfield.co.uk