Comedian Dave Elliott promises comedy fans he’ll deliver after pandemic absence
A leading member of a growing stable of Belfast comedians he joins the likes of Shane Todd, Ciaran Bartlett, Mickey Bartlett and Paddy Raff
Comedian Dave Elliott’s return to the stage can’t come quick enough for audiences starved of live entertainment in the last two years.
And he has promised people they won’t be disappointed.
He takes to the stage at the Ulster Hall in September with his eagerly anticipated Bits And Pieces show – a showcase of new material which he says is his best work yet.
A leading member of a growing stable of Northern Ireland comedians he joins the likes of Shane Todd, Ciaran Bartlett, Mickey Bartlett and Paddy Raff putting the local comedy scene on the map.
And the beauty of it is they have all done it together. In the age of the podcast they regularly feature alongside each other online.
“I suppose back in the day there were very few outlets or venues, there was the Empire Comedy Club but you can’t put everyone on the same stage.
“But with the arrival of the internet and then podcasts all of a sudden there were new platforms for people to get their stuff out there,” he said.
And it was never so prevalent during the pandemic lockdowns.
“You can do your own podcasts and put stuff out there, in the past you’d have to wait to catch a break, but we don’t to rely on that anymore, the material is out there immediately and people can make their own judgements instantly.”
While he admits, like any comedian, even the best of them, there have been times when jokes have bombed.
“Anyone who says they haven’t bombed is a liar!”
But the fact he is now one of the foremost comics on the scene is testament to how established he has become.
“Bits And Pieces is exactly what it says,” he said.
“In the past the shows would have a theme but this time it’s just a collection of general observations of life and I honestly think it’s best routine I’ve done.”
He is currently playing a series of low key pub gigs as he road-tests the routine before unleashing it on the general public.
For Dave his journey into stand up started when he joined a sketch group which appeared at the fabled Edinburgh Festival and when it folded friends encouraged him to take the plunge.
“There’s no hiding place on stage, unfortunately, but it’s a great buzz to make people laugh, this is my eighth year doing it and each year I loved it bit more.
“It’s great that so many of us have come through at the same time, they say a rising tide lifts all ships and that’s what happened with us.
“It’s so different from the Empire days, now there are so many other opportunities for people to get up there and practice.”
The current crop of talent have come through the same process.
“We’re all mates, we’ve had our moments, but we get on and we love working together.”
It was in partnership with Shane Todd that they became an unlikely lockdown hit, becoming listeners’s new best friends as everybody was restricted to their homes.
Together with Todd they co-hosted the weekly lockdown raves on Radio Ulster. It became one of the highlights of the first months of lockdown in 2020.
“It was simply really, we just fired on the tunes and told people to get the beers out and have some fun.
“It was a lot of fun although I think there were a few who disapproved of us encouraging people to get stuck into the beers!”
Aside from stand up, Dave is currently working on a few sitcom ideas which he hopes will come to fruition in the not too distant future.
“If I see something or if something happens I’ll make a note of it, stick on my phone and play around with it later and see if there is any comedy in it, it’s all about onbservation.”
Home is at Ballyholme on the outskirts of Bangor with his wife and two kids.
“My wife is originally from Belfast and it took some persuading for her to move down here, but now we wouldn’t be anywhere else.”
Dave Elliott – Bits And Pieces, Ulster Hall, Belfast, September 10. Tickets on sale now from ulsterhall.co.uk and tickemaster.ie
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