Duncan Norvelle

Duncan Norvelle

Date of birth: 30-11-1957

The ultra-camp comic, famous for his 'Chase Me' catchphrase, was born just outside Loughborough. He left school at 16 and took a job in a menswear shop - but within a year he quit to follow his dream of being an entertainer, spurred on by winning £20 in a talent show when I was on holiday in Bournemouth.

He was a familiar face on TV in the early Eighties, with his safari suit and ultra-camp act. But despite his flirtatiously gay stage persona, he is actually married.

Although he fell out of favour as the decade came to an end, he has continued to work the club and cruise circuit.

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Duncan Norvelle – Original Review

Note: This review is from 2007

Review by Steve Bennett

Duncan Norvelle is a name that won't mean much to a lot of people. Add his catchphrase, 'chase me', and a lot more memories will be jogged.

He was one of those oddities of light entertainment. Briefly, ubiquitously famous, popping up in his safari suit to deliver his ultra-camp cry on every variety show going, before disappearing to obscurity with his national catchphrase. Is he bovvered? It's hard to tell. Norvelle's continued to work, now boasting 33 years in the business - though don't expect to see him at too many modern clubs.

He minces on – and that really is the only word – to Teddy Bear's Picnic, skips gaily across the stage with a couple of unwilling volunteers, then encourages one to chase him backstage. Is that his entire act over in three minutes?

Well, it's a fair sample. But he banters away for the full set with a barrage of gags, that John Inman-camp knocking the edge of some of the cruder knob jokes, turning them cheeky rather than crude. Again the problem is that you'll have heard all the material before, but Norvelle can certainly work a room – even one like this, that he doesn't consider his natural habitat. But that he can still do it is proof that the core skills o comedy are unchanging. Is his style really so different from Alan Carr's?

Norvelle, still looking youthful but now in tailored suit rather than camp costume, is also an impressionist, it says on his CV. His subjects date him, mind: James Stewart, John Wayne, Kirk Douglas… The joke is not so much in the impressions – imagine Paul Daniels as Phantom Of The Opera! – but in his struggle to get into character.

For all the old nonsense, Norvelle exudes an infectious sense of fun. The man's a showman, and you can't fault that.

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Published: 25 Oct 2007

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Agent

Anita Elizabeth Holmes
Contact by email
Artist Management
Mobile: 0790 5310027

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