On the last Wednesday of every other month there is a comedy/story telling event in Kilburn, called ‘Tall Tales’. I first head about this via the John Finnemore fandom last year. Since then, I’ve tried to go to every show, as it’s been thoroughly enjoyable every time.
For those who don’t know, Finnemore is a radio comedy writer. He’s the brains behind the hit sit-com, ‘Cabin Pressure‘ (which is ending this Christmas…I don’t think a radio show has made me this emotional since the finale of Bleak Expectations in 2012). Finnemore has his own sketch show on BBC, ‘John Finnemore’s Souvenir Programme‘, which you could probably still catch on iplayer if you’re quick. As well as his own shows he has written for ‘That Mitchell and Webb Sound’ (the radio -and orginal – version of ‘That Mitchell and Webb Look’) ‘That Mitchell and Webb Look’ (the the TV version of ‘That Mitchell and Webb Look’), ‘The Now Show’ ‘Miranda’ (as well as acting in it) and other radio shows (probably).
Finnemore goes to most of the Tall Tales nights, except when he’s traveling round Europe on a bike, which seems to be a common habit of his. As well as Finnemore, there are a number of other brilliantly funny people that regularly come to Tall Tales. The host is a guy called Robert Hudson. Robert starts every show by taking to the stage, introducing the guests, and telling a story. However, the first few times I went I fell into his trap. He starts each story so seamlessly, for the first half, you don’t realise it’s a story, you just think it’s a strange anecdote he’s telling, until, invariably, he mentions something so implausible you realise you’ve been duped. Robert is a marvelous story-teller, and I can see why he started the night.
As well as the two mentioned above, there are other regular guest. One of my favorite is Gareth Edwards (and not just because he was the producer of Bleak Expectations. Well, maybe a bit because of that). Edwards does something different every time, but the last couple of times I’ve seen him he’s told us a story about his young son, both of which have been very funny and believable.
What I’m trying to say in this post, is if you live in or around London, are a fan of comedy – especially radio comedy – you should make the effort to go to one of these shows. Most of the material is still in the baby steps, some will make it on air, in a polished version, and some won’t. Either way it’s good place to be.
Here are some photos I’ve collected over the months: