With Jongleurs’ demise, the newly opened Rotunda is out to capitalise on the gap in Glasgow’s comedy-and-dining market. Rubbing shoulders with the Hydro and SECC, in a building housing four restaurants, it’s a fine, low-ceilinged room with excellent sightlines and 300 seats - the city’s biggest comedy club. And as compere Raymond Mearns noted, every one of tonight’s acts could have headlined elsewhere.
Gary Little, Scott Agnew and Chris Forbes ***
Rotunda Comedy Club, Glasgow
Chris Forbes shares the rural upbringing of PC Charlie McIntosh, his character in BBC sitcom Scot Squad. And he plays the wide-eyed ingénue in the big city when it suits him. In the main though, he capably undercuts his clean-cut persona with drolly dark and deceptive rug pulls about his relationship with his English fiancée. Relaxed and assured, he retains enough mischievous twinkle in his eye to eschew blandness.
Scott Agnew burnishes his I-cannae-believe-that-big-lad’s-a-homo shtick with ironic endorsements from the likes of The List and Attitude magazines, establishing a swaggering defiance channelled into his tales of drunken misadventure. As he’s matured as a storyteller, he’s drawn comparisons with Billy Connolly. But in his exaggerated world of breakfast-seeking alcoholism, his hungover impotence more closely resembles the simmering anger of Rhod Gilbert, giving him strong command of the crowd.
Closing, Gary Little’s no-nonsense rules for men in parks and blithely un-PC attitude towards the sensitive obese and alcoholics ensured plenty of hard, fast laughs. Exploiting the quirks of inexplicable US sex toy laws, he spins increasingly ridiculous fantasy scenarios. Best of all, is his admission of the type of woman he’s likely to attract in his fifties, suffused with world-weary wisdom and wit.