Live Review: Metro May 2017

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Count Arthur Strong – Corn Exchange, Ipswich
by Sharon Lougher


Comedian Steve Delaney could probably have done with the BBC sitcom version of his deluded variety hall creation returning to our screens earlier than the latter half of this month to better coincide with this live tour but never mind: there is no shortage of punters wanting a slice of the malapropisms that make the Count such a bonkers delight.
Live, the Count is quite different from on TV: he’s living his art rather than reminiscing about it, as he attempts to put together a stage version of The Sound of Music.  Where his supporting cast are fully fleshed out on TV, they’re a pointless addition here: the Count is best when left to his ramblings, which are enough to make you snort out your cider as he drifts from recalling the Biblical roles played by Sooty and Bobby Crush in his latest cookery show to his mad alternative version of The Trip co-starring Barry Cryer.
That it’s so unashamedly aimed at punters of a certain vintage – millennials won’t get it – is part of the joy here, as is the sense of Delaney unleashed.  The musical homage to Julie Andrews might fizzle out at the end but Delaney’s comic creation is still on song.




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