Pierre Hollins Banishes the January Blues

A regular highlight on the Corn Hall calendar, the Comedy Club brought some much needed cheer to frosty 2023 for a packed crowd keen to shake off the January blues with an international roster of comics. That said, MC Justin Panks heralds from much closer to home, having travelled all the way from Norwich to mercilessly tease the good people of Diss. A group of young farmers were in his sights throughout the night and took his ribbing on the collective chin, while Hilary and Dale on the front row determinedly gave as good as they got.

Dion Owen introduced us to a brand of comedy unique to cycling Canadians, while Nick Chang, trading under the name Long Hu regaled the Corn Hall crowd with the trials and tribulations of teaching in China. Resplendent in his iridescent jacket and high heels, this former night club bouncer managed to confound all the stereotypes going with his irrepressible stage presence. The Comedy Club often opens its doors to a brief set from someone just starting out. Steve Whittaker, having what he described as a mid-life crisis, proved postmen can do more than whistle with a series of one liners that placed him somewhere between the silliness of Tim Vine and the cheekiness of Gary Delaney. Punching well above his weight, he proved to be one of the funniest acts of the night.

Headliner Pierre Hollins rounded off the evening with an assured and accomplished routine – not yet ready to be labelled an old pro, this was none the less text book stuff. Having brushed aside an uncharacteristically waspish heckle with an offer of a refund, he took to the cheat stick – guitar to the uninitiated – where he proved himself not only a find comic, but an accomplished musician.