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Russell Kane

Russell Kane

Russell Kane won the Foster's Edinburgh Comedy Award in 2010, on his third time of being nominated, having scooped best newcomer in 2006.

His career started in 2004, when he won the Laughing Horse new act competition, and the following year he was nominated for best newcomer in the Chortle awards.

Russell Kane Videos


Russell Kane at Latitude

Russell Kane at Latitude

Russell Kane likes coming to Latitude – or Latte-tude as he calls it. Where else would he get such a concentration of the middle class he likes to mock so much?

But this time he sets his sights wider, looking at the whole British psyche compared to other nationalities. Cue entertaining observations about our drinking culture, from nightclub pickups to cheering whenever someone drops a glass – in contrast to earnest American optimism and genuine concern for others, or expressive Italian passion.

‘Some comedians would stop there,’ he says after a routine comparing a civilised Friday night in rural Italy to the carnage of Southend. But, tooting his own trumpet, he says he wants to go deeper than the superficial.

True to his word, the broad comments are slotted into a full dissertation about our national character, from the crippling fear of embarrassment to the ‘all-or-nothing’ impulse that applies to the first flush of sex as it does to weekend boozing. Almost as footnotes to his arguments are the small nagging voice of the critic, real or imagined, which he mocks in asides that are not only self-referential, but reference the self-referential, down a rabbit-hole of introspection.

There’s a lot of admiring talk of Southern European body language, which is very apt for so animated a performer, perpetually striding the stage, spinning around in mock-whimsy and generally ducking and diving in the space.

So no surprises that he prefers the dramatic expressions of the Med to our repressed formalities, depicted in the voice of a gruff no-nonsense, no-emotion geezer many will recognise from he way he’s previously characterised his own dad. He also seems to have adopted an Italian fashion style, a natty ‘man in black’ standing out against grimy festival-goers.

His call for blokes to talk about their problems more is sincere as is his plea for earlier sex education to stem the tide of teenage pregnancies. He’s clearly happy to mention sex in front of the youngsters the comedy tent inevitably attracts (regardless of the age-appropriate warnings posted outside); his confession that he’s trying to edit his material undermined by its segue into a quick routine about swearing being the Essex equivalent of going ummm…

Not content with summing up Britishness, he also summarises the entirety of life into a series of bad decisions which many will relate to, before bringing the set down with a more domestic routine about the irritations of a near-insomniac like him living with a partner can doze anywhere. Again, a topic close to home to many, especially trying to sleep in a tent tonight.

Saturday 18th Jul, '15
Steve Bennett



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