Some comedy is what’s needed this World Laughter Day and London has plenty of venues that can supply it.
They say that laughter is the best medicine, but sometimes it feels like there’s not too much to chortle about. That’s why World Laughter Day has been celebrated every year since 1998, giving everyone the excuse to seek out something funny to have a really good giggle over. It falls on the first Sunday of May, which means that it’s this Sunday (May 7th).
Laughing helps to lower stress and actually increases your body’s immunity. The burst of endorphins you receive not only makes you feel good and improves your wellbeing, but can also relieve pain in the short-term. So, there’s no excuse not to have a good giggle this World Laughter Day. If you’ve got a trip planned to London for a serviced apartment escape, then here are some of the comedy venues that can help induce that laughter.
Up the Creek – Greenwich
Something of a gem, Up the Creek has been going since the 1990s and has gained a firm following from locals and comedy-lovers. It’s the kind of venue where heckling is not only common but encouraged. Big names often use it as a place to test out new material, knowing they’ll get an honest response from the audience! You could be among the first to hear jokes that will eventually delight the crowds in some of the UK’s biggest arenas. The weekly Sunday Specials are a relaxed, good value chortle-fest and this week feature John Kearns and Fin Taylor.
The Bill Murray – Angel
It may be the new kid on the block, but The Bill Murray is quickly making a name for itself. A veritable mixed bag of offerings, from solo shows to works-in-progress, it’s a great place to go and see what is going on in the world of comedy. There are two rooms and often multiple shows in each on the same night, allowing you to mix and match what you see and come away with a pretty well-rounded experience. Despite only opening last year, the likes of Simon Amstell and Tim Key have already graced the stage at The Bill Murray.
Soho Theatre – Soho
Attracting big names – we’re looking at you Eddie Izzard and Russell Howard – as well as innovative comedy shows, Soho Theatre is a venue not to overlook. As well as the central theatre space, there are upstairs and downstairs rooms equipped to host comedians, who tend to get an hour-long slot as opposed to an evening of assorted acts. Think of it as something of a halfway house between a traditional comedy club and a big arena and you’ll have the right idea.
The Top Secret Comedy Club – Covent Garden
The secret’s out, but it was never going to stay hidden for long, as this comedy club has everything you could ask for. A fun atmosphere, reasonably-priced drinks and plenty of laughs, there are two spaces – one seating 75 and another with capacity for 220 – allowing different types of show to be hosted. Past performers include Jason Manford and John Bishop, so it’s definitely on the radar of those in the know. Tickets for the Sunday Stand-up Comedy event start at just £1 – you can’t get much fairer than that!
Leicester Square Theatre – West End
If you like your comedy fairly well-established so that you know what you’re going to get, then the Leicester Square Theatre is for you. From Richard Herring to Micky Flanagan, they’ve graced the stage here and it is a regular stop on many high-profile comedy tours. In the Autumn months, the theatre runs a new comedy competition, with up to 300 acts performing at the venue’s Museum of Comedy. Until then, the schedule is mainly made up of well-known names. This weekend sees Frankie Boyle trying out some new jokes.