Matt Rudge began his showbiz career young, providing voices to cartoons and radio programmes while still a child before going on to study at drama school.
While working as a runner at MTV studios after graduation, he was asked to keep a studio audience entertained while Ruby Wax was being hypnotized, starting his career as a warm-up act.
Presenting work followed, including fronting off-the-wall reports for The Wright Stuff on Channel 5, BBC News and ITN. In 2004 he was the voiceover and warm up act on Channel 4's Kings of Comedy.
He also claims he may be the only person to have died twice on Casualty, in two separate episodes as two different characters. Once by smoke inhalation, once by brain hemorrhage
Matt Rudge supporting Stewart Francis
On the cheeseboard of comedy, Matt Rudge is the mildest of cheddar. With a calm, gentle delivery he chats amicably about quotidian subject matter, unlikely to cause any dissent. Indeed, the state of the train network *is* shocking; who’s so lazy they have to buy grated cheese? and isn’t it strange weather for the time of year…
OK, the last one is exaggeration, and his routines are flecked with a little more wit than that description suggests – but Rudge is not comedian that will particularly stick in the memory, even it the routine about his surname tries to plant those seeds in the brain. Not that this relative youngster’s name is particularly unusual enough to warrant material, mind you.
Occasionally he raises his performance to a mini-rant, or even a Dr Seuss-like rhyming exchange, which don’t fit naturally with the usual placid demeanour, but trigger an obligated round of applause. Yes, when he drops the c-bomb he get a laugh from the jarring effect – and it is a funny line – but other out-of-character episodes only have the effect of making his persona harder to pin down, even if the edge they flash is welcome.
He is warm and inviting, with easy control of the stage, but the chilled conversational approach means the chuckles are more sparse than they could be. In a crowded market, Rudge seems to be a comedian who’ll suffice rather than excel.