GRINNING IDIOT COMEDY CLUB @ ST. DOMINIC’S | NARC. | Reliably Informed | Music and Creative Arts News for Newcastle and the North East

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Image: Gary Delaney

My first introduction to comedy in the North East was thanks to Grinning Idiot. Before The Stand emerged as Newcastle’s natural hub, I got my fill of laughs in a spit ‘n’ sawdust social club in the Ouseburn Valley, where Reginald D. Hunter and Sarah Millican among others performed. St Dominic’s Catholic Club may not be the first location that springs to mind when it comes to a chortling good time, but the recently refurbed space (which is also home to super successful indie club night Pop Klubb) offers just the right level of comfort and cheapness to appeal.

Grinning Idiot has been running since 2008; set up by John Smith, the club took a break in 2013 due to John’s move to London and subsequently passed on to comedy partner and chum Della Haq, whose previous work in Newcastle included managing the sadly now defunct Hyena Cafe comedy club. Since then, Della’s concentrated on running comedy festival Jesterval, which returns to Gateshead’s BALTIC Square from Friday 3rd until Sunday 12th June, but after fans clamoured for more performances, she made the decision to start the monthly comedy club back up again. “We have received so many requests to bring the Grinning Idiot back to St Dom’s, it seemed silly to ignore them.” She says.

What makes Grinning Idiot such a welcome addition to the region’s comedy circuit is their inclusive nature and keen eye for talent. “The Grinning Idiot ethos has always been to bring the best comedy to North East audiences, whilst supporting both local acts and treating them to talent from afar.”

They’re more than putting their money where their mouth is with their forthcoming programme, the highlights of which include David Hadingham, Tom Taylor and MC Mickey Hutton on Saturday 5th March; Gary Delaney, Rob Rouse, Nicola Mantalios Lovett and MC Jonathon Mayor on Saturday 2nd April; and Sammy Dobson, Michael Fabbri and MC Kai Humphries on Saturday 7th May.

With a programme featuring household names and up and coming talent, it seems that Grinning Idiot have comfortably picked up where they left off.

Grinning Idiot Comedy Club takes place at St Dominic’s Catholic Club, Newcastle every month. See their website for full info.

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