In the fifth episode of A History Of Comedy In Several Objects, now out on the iTunes store, we talk to legendary political comedian, Mark Thomas. We look at his particularly absurd object (a squeezy hand grenade! You’ll have to listen to find out more information…) which leads us to discuss big topics as whether comedy can create change and what is the role of a stand-up comedian? Join Olly and Elspeth to explore Mark’s unique engagement in the world stand-up comedy and the world in general.
Squeezy stress grenade (Mark Thomas Collection). Photo Matt Wilson
Don’t forget to get involved! You can contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet us at @histcompod. You can search the online catalogue for more information about the holdings of the British Stand-Up Comedy Archive at http://archive.kent.ac.uk.
Images of some objects featured on the podcast can be found on our flickr site in the ‘History of Comedy in Several Objects‘ album.
The third episode of A History Of Comedy In Several Objects (or HistComPod for short) is now available via iTunes.
Join Olly and Elspeth for another week spelunking in the British Stand-Up Comedy Archive as they look at an attempt to establish a Comedy Trade Union in 1983, and go through a list of all the key acts in the alternative comedy scene of the day, where future stars like French and Saunders rubbed shoulders with long forgotten performers whose gags are now lost in the mists of time.
The specific focus of this episode is a letter written in 1983 by Andy de la Tour and Lee Cornes to others involved in the alternative cabaret scene at the time about the formation of a ‘union’ for performers, looking particularly at pay from specific venues. This letter is from the Andy de la Tour Collection (within this folder of material).
Olly also talks about a new group, the UK Comedy Guild; the article discussed (‘Gagging rights: British comedians set up UK Comedy Guild trade union’ by Paul Fleckney) can be found on The Guardian website.
If you want to get involved you can contact us via email@example.com or tweet us at @histcompod.
You can search the online catalogue for more information about the holdings of the British Stand-Up Comedy Archive at http://archive.kent.ac.uk.
The first ever episode of ‘A History Of Comedy In Several Objects’, alternatively known as ‘HistComPod’ is now available on the iTunes podcast store.
The podcast, devised and presented by Dr Oliver Double (Director of the Comedy & Popular Performance Research Centre and previously a professional comedian) and Elspeth Millar (Archivist in the University’s Special Collections & Archives), aims to illustrate the history of stand-up comedy through objects found within the British Stand-Up Comedy Archive. Each episode features a particular item/object/record from the archive, which Olly and Elspeth discuss to show what it reveals about the art and craft of stand-up and the recent history of the form.
In the jam-packed inaugural episode, Olly and Elspeth discuss the origins of the archive, the project of the podcast and whether it’s possible to archive a performance. The articles that we reference are:
The main feature of this first episode is an orange from the Josie Long Collection. The orange was originally from one of Josie’s ‘Trying is Good’ shows, but was returned to Josie as part of ‘All the Planet’s Wonders’ (check out Josie’s call for ‘Edinburgh Ephemera’ here). Olly and Elspeth engage with the decomposing citrus fruit and the significance it has, whilst touching upon Elspeth’s “archivist’s guilt”.
An orange in a box donated to Josie Long as part of her ‘All of the Planets Wonders’ tour. Image: Matt Wilson, University of Kent
If you want to get involved you can contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org or tweet us at @histcompod. You can search the online catalogue for more information about the holdings of the British Stand-Up Comedy Archive at http://archive.kent.ac.uk.