Nazi salute halts gig

Bloom vs the racist

Stand-up Adam Bloom walked off stage 30 seconds into his set after a racist heckler gave him a Nazi salute.

The gig, at the Other Side Comedy Club in Scarborough, turned sour before Bloom had taken to the stage, while the offending punter was talking to regular compere Jon Reed.

During the discussion, the man – who was a publican from nearby Filey - mentioned that he had sold something to a ‘Paki’, which got a laugh from the rest of the audience.

It was then that ‘a clearly furious’ Bloom went on stage to challenge the comment. But his stance was greeted with silence.

‘The audience laughed at the original comment and I was horrified,’ the comic told Chortle. ‘I told the man to apologise and he said, “No, I'm a minority to them.” That got a huge laugh. He then did a Nazi salute at me.

’I had no support act, and couldn't bear the thought of doing 90 minutes to this crowd so I left after about 30 seconds.’

One onlooker said: ‘Bloom dropped his mic and left the stage as quickly as he had entered it, assuming the audience condoned the racism.’

However, the comic was tracked down to his room in the hotel where the gig is staged, and was persuaded to return to the stage – despite the now-poisoned atmosphere.

By this time, the racist heckler had left, along with some who were disgusted by his behaviour.

Writing in the Scarborough Evening News, the witness added: ‘In a highly charged atmosphere, Bloom offered refunds. In a tense stand-off, one person approached the stage and took him up on it, although neither he nor Bloom, who was half-expecting a punch, could remember what the door charge was. Several others left too, barracking as they departed.

‘Sweating and swearing in equal profusion, Bloom eventually stabilised himself during a 90-minute set… he recovered well.’

Bloom, added: ‘Six more people left during the start of my set, but I got a standing ovation from half the people who stayed and 18 emails the next day, all supportive.

‘The ovation was for my belief, not my gig, which was tough to say the least.’

Published: 15 Jun 2007

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