29 June – 8 July 2017

Now in its sixth year, Banana Cabaret’s annual Balham Comedy Festival, produced by the comedy club’s Dave Vickers and comedy legend John Moloney returns in 2017 to The Bedford in Balham from 29 June – 8 July.    Featuring  a dazzling array of top-notch comedy talent who will generate mirth, merriment and laughter at the annual joke fest,  the 2017 line-up includes  Stephen K Amos, Mary Bourke,   Ed Byrne, Simon EvansRich HallJeremy Hardy,  Rhys James, The Kagools,  Joe LycettJason Manford,  Phil Nichol, and Sara Pascoe with more names to be announced.  The Balham Comedy Festival always offers comedy fans the chance to see Work in Progress and Edinburgh preview shows and this year is no exception.

There will be four Best of Banana Cabaret sets featuring the likes of Ninia Benjamin, Jarred Christmas, Carl Donnelly, Dave Fulton, John Hastings, Sally Anne Hayward, David Longley, Zoe Lyons, Joe Pasquale, and Allyson June Smith.   As with every Balham Comedy Festival there will be a few surprise guests joining the Best of Banana line-ups – previous years have seen the likes of Lee Mack, Marcus Brigstocke and Tim Vine dropping in for a fast paced 20 minutes – so who knows what surprises there will be this year! Best of Banana Cabaret will be hosted by Festival producer John Moloney whose Radio 4 series The John Moloney Show enjoyed critical acclaim.

With prices ranging from £10.00 – £16.00 and double tickets for two headline shows ranging from £20.00 – £25.00 tickets will be on sale from 30 May 2017 via the website Newsletter subscribers can purchase tickets from Friday 26 May 2017.  @balhamcomedy 

Contact Banana Cabaret on 07467 027592 / email, or book tickets now


Debbie Bennett

T:  0208 451 3661 M:  07534 927784 E:



SARA PASCOE – LADSLADSLADS – The Round Room – 7.30 pm:  Sara is enjoying a year-long, one woman stag-do.    From spiritual retreats, city-breaks, life-drawing classes and football matches – she has been drunk and lonely everywhere.   The multi-award-winning comedian and star of Live At The Apollo, Mock the Week, QI and Taskmaster returns to the Balham Comedy Festival with a stunning new stand-up show. “Pascoe’s lively mind teases out big questions with intelligence, silliness and self-deprecation” Guardian @sarapascoe   £16.00

ED BYRNE – SPOILER ALERT – The Round Room – 9.15 pm:  Is life that bad or have we good reason to complain about it? Are we filled with righteous anger at a world gone wrong or are we all just a bunch of whiny little brats? In short, are we spoiled? Come and watch as Byrne takes this question, turns it upside down and shakes it until the funny falls out. Go on, spoil yourself. “Comedy’s Holy Grail. Go See!” Sunday Times  Twitter @MrEdByrne £16.00

*Double ticket £25.00


MARY BOURKE – I WANT AN IRISH PASSPORT!  (Edinburgh preview)   – The Round Room – 7.30 pm:  The world is divided into those who are Irish and those who wish they were.  Since Brexit everyone wants an Irish passport but what does it mean to be “authentically Irish”.  Mary Bourke and guests explore what it means to be Irish in a changing world in a hilarious, thought provoking show.    Irish passports will be issued after the show * “One of the best female acts in the country” – GQ ”The audience loved her” The Independent  @marybourkecomic  * this may not be true     £10.00 (Concs £5.00 with suitable ID)


BEST OF BANANA CABARET HOSTED BY JOHN MOLONEY – The Round Room – 9.00 pm:   Sally-Anne Hayward’s quick wit and regular appearances at the Glastonbury Festival have made her a much sought after comic on the UK and international comedy circuits.  “Extremely Funny” The Independent Dave Fulton started out in the USA in the 80s and ended up in the UK in 2000 after losing a bet between Greg Proops and Mitch Hedburg.  He says he’s here until the UK runs out of London Pride beer!  David Longley is a difficult comedian to define; on the one hand, abrasive, crude and insulting and on the other, articulate, intelligent and disarmingly funny.  “Acid tongued and as sharp as a barrel full of tacks… As intense and intelligent performer as you’re likely to see” The List £16.00


*Double ticket £20.00


THE KAGOOLS – TUTTI FRUTTI – The Ballroom – 7.30 pm:  Fresh from sell-out runs at Edinburgh and a hit Australian tour, UK physical comedy duo The Kagools are delighted to be bringing their multi award-winning show ‘Tutti’ to Balham Comedy Festival, for one-night only.  Directed by NZ comedian Javier Jarquin, Tutti features the duo’s trademark combination of live action and interactive video to create an anarchic, spontaneous show that’s fun for everyone.  “★★★★★ One of the outright funniest pieces of the entire festival.”  TV Bomb @TheKagools £10.00 (Concs £5.00 with suitable ID)


BEST OF BANANA CABARET HOSTED BY JOHN MOLONEY – The Round Room – 9.00 pm:  Carl Donnelly is a regular face on TV through appearances on Russell Howard’s Stand Up, Mock The Week, Russell Howard’s Good News and more.  Carl Donnelly and Chris Martin’s Comedy Podcast has over 50,000 followers and is featured in the Guardian’s Top 10 Comedy list;  Ninia Benjamin is a tour-de-force of comedy… she’s outrageously rude but above all side-splittingly funny. Ninia was catapulted to stardom as one third of BBC2′s 3 Non-Blondes and has appeared in various shows including Celebrity Master-chef (a terrible chef but very funny) but it’s on the live stage where her comedy talents really shine. According to her.    “If I fink it’s funny you’ll find it funny” Ninia Benjamin”; James Dowdeswell is an imaginative West Country comedian. As seen on Russell Howard’s Good News and Ricky Gervais’ Extras. “Excellent comedian” The Guardian 16.00

*Double ticket £20.00





PHIL NICHOL – YOUR WRONG (Edinburgh preview) – The Round Room – 7.30 pm:    Phil Nichol makes his Balham Comedy Festival debut this year with Your Wrong.  Trump – Your wrong. Brexit- Your wrong. Twitter- Your wrong. Tinder – Your wrong. Grammar – Your wrong.  Edinburgh Award Winner Phil Nichol has made mistakes. So have you. Not coming to this show would be another one. ★★★★★ Scotsman ★★★★★ List @philnichol on Twitter £10.00

OFF THE KERB PRODUCTIONS PRESENTS RICH HALL LIVE 2017The Round Room9.15 pm: Making his Balham Comedy Festival debut, Rich Hall’s critically acclaimed grouchy, deadpan style has established him as a master of absurdist irony and the king of rapid-fire wit. The award-winning Montana native renowned for his expertly crafted tirades and quick fire banter with audiences and delightful musical sequences saddles up and hitches his wagon to Rich Hall is the star of the critically acclaimed BBC 4 documentaries Rich Hall’s California Stars, Rich Hall’s You Can Go To Hell, I’m Going To Texas, Rich Hall’s Inventing the Indian and his most recent Rich Hall’s Presidential Grudge Match. He also wrote and starred in a four-part series for BBC Radio 4 in November 2016 called ‘Rich Hall’s (US Election) Breakdown’. “Rich Hall is a comedy phenomenon”The Sun £16.00


JASON MANFORD – Work in Progress – The Round Room – 7.30 pm:  Making his Balham Comedy Festival debut  Jason Manford, is back with a work in progress show ahead of his national tour in 2018, which promises to feature a wealth of comedy anecdotes, misunderstandings and audience banter delivered with Jason’s likeable charm and teasingly intelligent wit.   Sunday Night at the Palladium (ITV1), Live at the Apollo (BBC One), Have I Got News For You, (BBC One), QI (BBC Two) and The Royal Variety Performance (ITV1) have all helped establish Jason as a nationally known comic.  “Effortlessly entertaining” – Evening Standard  ****  £16.00

JEREMY HARDY – The Round Room – 9.15 pm:  Jeremy Hardy is enjoying his fourth decade as a stand-up comedian. That’s a more dramatic way of saying he started 34 years ago and, without a lottery win, probably has at least another 34 years to go.  In this new show Jeremy will be looking at death, fear and what it’s like to be a stand-up comedian. Jeremy’s radio career includes ten series of Jeremy Hardy Speaks to the Nation on BBC Radio 4. He is also well known for his regular appearances on The News Quiz and I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue. Indeed, Alan Bennett recently said he likes him “but he’s only on the radio”. @JeremyJHardy £12.00 (Concs £5.00 with suitable ID)

*Double ticket £21.00


RHYS JAMES – WISEBOY (Work in Progress Edinburgh Show) – The Round Room 7.30 pm:  Well, well, well. If it isn’t Rhys James, the guy who said comedy shows are for losers and blurbs are for idiots. Back here with another comedy show, as explained in this blurb. Unbelievable. As seen on Mock The Week, Russell Howard’s Stand Up Central and Virtually Famous. “A cut above his humdrum peers” **** Independent. ‘Sickeningly talented’ **** Time Out.  ‘Physically unimpressive’ **** Scotsman. ‘A frighteningly good stand-up comedian… I think he could be really huge’ Doc Brown Guardian. One of the best reviewed comedy shows of 2016. £10.00

STEPHEN K AMOS –AN EVENING WITH – The Round Room 9.15 pm:  Stephen K. Amos returns to the Balham Comedy Festival for the sixth year.  Join Stephen for an hour of fun and laughter as The master of feel-good comedy returns to the Balham Comedy Festival after a smash-hit worldwide tour that’s spanned everywhere from Britain to Australia to South Africa. As heard on BBC Radio 4’s What Does The K Stand For? and seen on BBC 2’s QI.   Deliciously deft…we roared at ad-libbing that was first rate throughout…you’ll leave the show smiling” The Times @stephenkamos £16.00

*Double ticket £20.00





JOE LYCETT –  Work in Progress – The Ballroom – 7.30 pm:  Hello there little guinea piggy, why don’t you come along and watch Joe Lycett, who makes his Balham Comedy Festival debut, scuttle about in an attempt to amuse you with NEW JOKES and POORLY-THOUGHT-OUT-IDEAS? Expect stuff to be sketchy and experimental and not as good as the stuff you’ve seen on Live at the Apollo or 8 Out Of 10 Cats Does Countdown.   But it’ll be RAW and REAL and NOT THAT MUCH OF YOUR LIFE. Come with an open mind and closed legs.  @joelycett  £12.00

BEST OF BANANA CABARET HOSTED BY JOHN MOLONEY – The Round Room – 9.00 pm:  New Zealand Sensation Jarred Christmas is one of the finest stand-ups on the UK circuit. His quick-witted spontaneity and energetic storytelling has earned him a whole host of accolades including a Chortle Award for Best Compere. With a larger than life persona, he has been catapulted to the forefront of TV screens appearing on shows such as Mock The Week, Never Mind the Buzzcocks, 8 out of 10 Cats, and Argumental .  “One of the funniest men to pick up a microphone”   Time Out;  Canadian emigre Allyson June Smith commands every stage she walks onto with her dynamite brand of hilarious material driven by the strong rhythms that are a hallmark of so much of US stand-up.  Her bold observational style led to prominence in Canada including her own hour long TV comedy special. “Absolutely nailed the support slot! She has set the bar high! Think I need a different less-good support!” Jason Manford;   Funny man Joe Pasquale joins the Banana Cabaret line up for the first time in his career – the much loved comic who regularly features on Tonight at the London Palladium has recently been dipping his toe at comedy clubs around the UK.  £16.00

*Double ticket £21.00

                                                                                                                                                                                                                SATURDAY 8 JULY

SIMON EVANS:  GENIUS (Edinburgh preview)  – The Round Room – 7.30 pm:  Host of BBC Radio 4’s Simon Evans Goes to Market and star of Live At The Apollo, Simon Evans makes his Balham Comedy Festival debut with Genius.  What is Genius? Beethoven? Einstein? Stewart Lee? The Spork?  Is it a high IQ? A ruthless disregard for convention?  Any ploy used successfully to carry a third pint glass without spilling it?  Is it the combination of unexpected influences to conceal the processes of creativity?  The Beatles wrote great songs, but became geniuses when they drew not just on Little Richard but also on the work of Bernard Cribbins.  Maradonna revealed his true genius not when he channelled Pele but when he channelled Michael Jordan.  And more to the point, why does Society fail to recognise Simon Evans as The Man of Genius he clearly dresses as?  Few of these questions will be adequately answered but all will at the least be squinted at, quizzically.  With reflections on the nature of intelligence, the possibility of original thought, the struggle to find the authentic self, dog fucking and the Octopus.  Do not vote in any further election or referendum until you have seen this show.  “Sizzlingly entertaining ….Devastatingly funny gags….” Guardian.  @TheSimonEvans £12.00


BEST OF BANANA CABARET HOSTED BY JOHN MOLONEY – The Round Room – 9.00 pm:   Zoe Lyonstrademark high energy, brilliantly observed routines and sharply written material has left her with an ever-growing fan base. Last year she won both the Comedian’s Comedian Award and Chortle Best Club Comic.  Zoe is a regular on many TV shows including Mock The Week and The Wright Stuff; John Hastings has been on BBC 3 and Radio 4 and is also a rad dude. Let’s party.  **** most people;  Adam Bloom  ‘He’s been one of my favourite stand-ups for about ten years. Bloom not only has meticulous, brilliant lines, but also an intense and fragile honesty.’ Ricky Gervais £16.00

*Double ticket £21.00

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