Chris High reviews Freddie Starr live at the Liverpool Empire Theatre 2006

Chris High reviews Freddie Starr on

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Chris High review: Freddie Starr live' 2006 at the Liverpool Empire Theatre

Freddie Starr

Liverpool Empire Theatre
April 13th 2006

Freddie Starr 2006: promotional image


After an absence of far too long, Freddie Starr hit The Empire with gusto. Heralded onto stage by the theme of 2001: A Space Odyssey, the Mighty Mouth of Toxteth roared into his routine as though he'd never been away.

Supported ably by, though with little in the way of reward from this most difficult of audiences, Johnny Laff was at times hilarious without ever overplaying his role as warm up. Saving his best for last, his Benny Hill impression brought gasps of amazement as to how a man so large, could move so quickly.

Freddie Starr, though is, well, Freddie Starr. Deliciously cheeky, irreverent and crass, he still holds the magic to spellbind an audience, even when some of those present are rude enough to try to spoil the entire show by shouting out pointless observations. His Mastermind and Magician sequences, especially, were something to witness even though they have been done before in different incarnations by other comedians. Freddie, though, can swing it like no other.

"Look's easy this, love, doesn't it?" he said to one persistent heckler, quickly followed by: "Like prayer. And believe me, you don't want to know what I'm praying for right now, but that balcony looks pretty shaky."

It's difficult to imagine that ten years ago idiots who insisted on calling out banalities to both Starr and Laff during their acts would have been treated so lightly, but time does mellow even the most acid of tongued. Tonight Freddie resorted to begging to be "given a break" before visibly showing his frustration, and understandably so, which got a great supportive response from the remainder of the audience. It was such a shame for him to put up with such nonsense during this, his hometown gig.

Freddie Starr is undoubtedly a comedian that appeals, in the main, to those of a certain age, but is nonetheless energetic, dynamic and, above all, talented enough to get away with murder.

He also has a pretty decent singing voice, as his opening number of Wild One, the closing ballad of Don't and his send ups of Elvis and Sintara clearly demonstrate. But his overall stage persona carries the weight of his appeal and this was given a free reign, as much as he was able, for the entire show.

Leaving the stage, Freddie Starr stood tall in every way but physical stature and long may he continue to prove his doubters wrong.


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