Date- November 3rd
Venue – Reading Concert Hall/Town Hall.
Who- Rob Brydon
Tour Title – Small man in a book tour
When it comes to gigs, we admit we don’t make much of an effort these days, neither of us like to stand up for too long, and many music gigs involve the audience standing regardless of whether you are allocated a seat or not, I guess it’s an age thing! So, as a consequence we tend to stay fairly local, Reading midweek, and Berks/Hants/West London/Oxfordshire at weekends.
When we heard Rob Brydon was coming to town we were both keen, as big fans of ‘Gavin and Stacey’ and also the excellent ‘The Trip’.
The audience that had congregated in the concert hall was of very mixed ages from teenagers up to OAPs, and probably drawn from different areas and aspects of his TV career.
What we hadn’t realised was the actual format the show would take. Which was an introduction from a young lady from BBC Berkshire who then proceeded to interview Rob loosely around the contents of his new book/biography. Rob seemed to enjoy this format, and gave him freedom to quote passages from his book as well as engage us in amusing stories, and voices! from his life and career. His ‘small man in a box’ routine has to be seen to be believed.
He touched on his happy upbringing in South Wales, his long slog to make it as an actor/comedian, and his big breakthrough in Gavin and Stacey as Uncle Bryn, as well as his seemingly close friendship with Steve Coogan, of which ‘The Trip’ was born.
Rob is difficult to categorize, as his early career was mostly spent as a voice over in TV adverts, he is a comedian, mimic and undoubtedly a pretty decent comedy actor, all these facets come to the fore to amuse in his stage performance. His anecdote about meeting Catherine Zeta Jones for the 1st time again since childhood at a film ceremony created some pretty loud guffaws amongst the audience.
The 2nd half of the show carried on in the same manner, except he allowed the floor to be opened up for audience questions, and is usual these Q’s ranged from the blind to the ridiculous. He asked the audience for a common Reading ‘saying’ or phrase, some wag barked out;
” I can’t read and I can’t write” where do you come from then asked Rob? “Reading” being the reply! A thoroughly enjoyable and amusing evening, and his book sales were doing a brisk trade in the foyer when we left 🙂