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Weekly Edition - Published  22 September 2016

 

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Mark Thomas - Red Shed Review
Review by Jo Forrest
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TO describe Mark Thomas as a comic would be doing him a disservice. Capable of more than just stringing together an hour of loosely connected jokes, Thomas is a storyteller and captivating one at that as he proved to a packed house at the Everyman Theatre, in Liverpool, on Saturday, 17 September 2016.

Funny, thought provoking, controversial and hard hitting, his latest show, The Red Shed, sees Thomas take the audience back to the miners' strike of the 1980's and 1 of his local haunts, a Labour Club in Yorkshire called The Red Shed. Even over 30 years later the Miners Strike is an emotional subject and it's 1 Thomas', having lived through, tackles superbly with a series of stories, some of which he admits are true, some of which are 'truest' as he takes a trip back to the scene of his involvement to try and track down the children who play a big part of the memories he has of that era. Along the way he peppers the tale with stories of his political experiences, his friendships and his introduction to The Red Shed. A politically charged show, Thomas' passion and emotion shines through for the entire 75 minutes he is on stage and, while the subject matter at times might be 'added to', it's hard not to see that the man is speaking from the heart.

Of course, the Labour Party's supporting bias of the subject matter only works on an audience who share similar political leanings to Thomas, so he has no problems winning over the Liverpool crowd tonight. However, after an hour or so of jokes, stories and memories, Thomas breaks into an outburst about Michael Gove, he looks close to tears, you can hear a pin drop around the theatre and the show ends with Thomas getting an entirely deserved standing ovation from a thoroughly entertained audience.

 

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