A Store of memories

BBC1 documents Comedy Store rise

BBC1 is to screen an hour-long documentary about the 25-year history of the Comedy Store.

The programme will be presented by Paul Merton, and is billed as a personal history of the trailblazing venue.

Comedians interviewed include Lee Evans, Clive Anderson, Jo Brand, Jack Dee, Jenny Eclair and Alexei Sayle, the Store’s first  regular compere.

When in opened above a London strip club in 1979, the Comedy Store became the focus of the new wave of so-called ‘alternative’ comedy and launched the careers of almost every big name today.

The tribute is Merton’s TV directoral debut, although he previously made a cinematic short calledSuicidal Dog.

He said: “I’d always wanted to be a comedian and the Comedy Store gave me a chance to get up on stage and prove whether I was funny or not.”

A spokesman for producers SMG said: “Paul Merton will take viewers through an entertaining hour of laughs and revelations from some of the comedians who have played the Store over the past 25 years.

“The documentary is a star-studded mix of great memories, archive material and interviews presented with Paul’s own unique experience and insight.”

25 Years of the Comedy Store - A Personal History by Paul Merton airs at 10.35pm on Tuesday January 11.

Published: 23 Dec 2004

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