The comedy night at the Garage, curated by young stand up comic Ben Jenkins (a star opener on the night), has garnered quite a following in the Uplands of Swansea, with students and locals alike. This week’s instalment was no exception. Hosted by Jongleurs Semi Finalist and Garage Comedy’s Fringe Stand Up Comp winner Simon Jones, it saw support acts from So You Think You’re FunnyEdinburgh Performer and Laughing Horse Performer Philip Cooper, Garage Comedy Competition Semi Finalist Ian Jenkins and Garage Comedy Night New Boy Dan Thomas. Of these three, it was the last to appear who shone brightest. Dan Thomas who I had recently seen at Manic Monday in Cardiff entertained again, with jokes hinged on nostalgia for childhood – George and Zippy from Rainbow, and Pac Man. The crowd approves.
The main act Dan Antopolski had a lot to live up to. His Comedy CV goes like this:
Winner of the BBC New Comedy Award
Winner of the Dave award for best joke @ 2009 Edinburgh Fringe
3 times Perrier Award Nominee
Finalist in So You Think You’re Funny & The Daily Telegraph Open Mic Award
Harry Hill’s TV Burp (ITV)
Live Floor Show (BBC)
The World Comedy Tour (Comedy Central)
Edinburgh and Beyond (Paramount Comedy)
There is a reason people keep nominating this stand up for more than just getting the next round in at the bar. On stage Antopolski is dark, deadpan and dead daft. The weirdy beardy comic oozes a likeable edginess and confident charisma that allow him to take risks that pay off and risks that don’t and still keep the audience hanging, if occasionally confused by his bizarre twisting trains of thought. Meanders that throw out articulate asides and intelligently subversive rambles; educated and philosophically informed. Plus there are sharp witticisms, imaginative verbal pyrotechnics and quick fire gags. Often he is silly and surreal. He brings out a chart of which body parts people are most likely to laugh off, quipping: “Hitler was quite jolly until he laughed a bollock off… Women are much less likely to laugh off their genitalia, it being internal.” He’s right; instead – giggling at his set – I lose both tits. The person to my right loses their nose and left eye. Next time Antopolski plays, the venue may want to book a medic. Or hand out donor cards.
The comedy lovechild of Harry Hill and Bill Bailey (I dare you not to imagine them creating him) this man is not afraid to rap about things. Things like sandwiches. Things that make us laugh. A twisted original, I left ‘off-my-tits’ (see earlier) but smiling. Uplifted, cerebrally exercised and thoroughly entertained. More like this please.
Garage Comedy Club @ The Garage, Whitez, Uplands Crescent, Swansea happens every Tuesday night. Join the Facebook group herefor money off the door. Admission: £2 members, £3 Gen. Public, (unless specified).