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TVO’s Review Of The Year 2013: Part Four

4 Jan

Hello and a warm welcome to the final part of our Review of 2013. Although October to December may feel like it only just happened, prepare to be amazed by how much you’ve forgotten. We were, but then we’re getting on a  bit.

So here are the best bits from the fourth quarter of the year – cherry-picked from news stories about both our regulars and a few new faces too. Enjoy.

OCTOBER

October was the month that Booshmania returned.  Just as the fantastic Behind the Boosh exhibition started its run at Proud Camden, showcasing the history of that most Mighty of comedic troops via the majesty of Dave Brown‘s photography, the boys were back in town.  Or rather, on the pier, as The Mighty Boosh went from the Soho Theatre to Tenacious D’s Festival Supreme in LA. A final (chaotic) UK warm-up show and a further run through at The Comedy Store, almost halted by a Visa saga, paved the way for a live performance that turned out to be one of the Festival’s highlights. Fan forums and social media platforms were buzzing with photos, footage and reviews of the show.

Another announcement that got us more than a bit over-excited in October was the news that Ben Wheatley is to direct the first 2 episodes of the next series of Doctor Who, starring the new Time Lord, Peter Capaldi. How good is that!?  We’re itching to see what happens when you combine one of the UK’s finest directors with its biggest export, now in the capable hands of an Oscar-winning acting legend to boot.  You can see the moment Capaldi became the Doctor in the 2013 Xmas special below…

More telly stuff, with the launch of Matt Berry’s new series, Toast Of London.  We’d been itching to see it since the pilot back in 2012, and it did not disappoint…

Elsewhere, Richard Ayoade established himself as a permanent fixture on prime time panel shows with a stint as team captain on Was It Something I Said? on Channel 4. Ayoade’s intellectual sparring with host David Mitchell certainly made our Sunday evenings feel a bit more highbrow!

What else?  Well, in movie news, there was an update on the cast for Paul King‘s long-awaited Paddington Bear feature film, which included mention of Rufus Jones and James Bachman. To end the month, TVO artists offered us a veritable smorgasbord of comedy options for Halloween night’s out, with special spooky performances from Colin Hoult and Richard Sandling.  And we were sad to lose the talented comedy actor Felix Dexter, who died at the too-young age of 52. He left behind an incredible legacy of great TV performances on shows like Bellamy’s PeopleAbsolutely Fabulous, The Fast ShowKnowing Me Knowing You… With Alan Partridge, Mongrels and Alexei Sayle’s Merry Go Round to name but a few. He will be much misse, and would typically hate all this fuss about him, so let’s remember him with one of his silliest moments – dancing for Sport Relief alongside Rhys Thomas and Lucy Montgomery.  What a dude.

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TVO’s Review Of The Year 2013: Part Two

2 Jan

Yesterday we brought you a round-up of the first quarter of 2013, as we’d probably forgotten half of it ourselves, let alone you lovely lot out there.  The second quarter provided loads more great things to celebrate, so we’ve been ploughing through TVO’s archives to pluck out the best bits from over 700 news stories across 2013. This second instalment of our round-up covers April-June, and is jam packed with forgotten treasures and instant classics alike.  Enjoy.

APRIL

April, or Ape-ril as it was renamed by the Sumatran Orangutan Society, began with a plea from TVO regulars Dave Brown and Tony Law to grow your beard as large as possible.  This was, of course, in aid of ape conservation: we are all 96.4% Orangutan after all…

The facial hair theme continued apace, with some of Onion Land’s most mighty beard-wearers being active this month.  First up, Paul Kaye hosted a short exhibition of his art, with TVO attended the star-studded press night to admire his work and have a quick chat to the man himself, though sadly his hectic schedule postponed our latest catch-up… we’re gonna get ya in the new year, mate! Kaye also became the latest big name to join the cast of hugely acclaimed fantasy show Game Of Thrones, as warrior Thoros of Myr.

He wasn’t the only one, either. Whilst the world got increasingly excited about his (then) forthcoming film A Field In EnglandBen Wheatley did the last thing critics expected, and made a string of commercials for Go Compare, further proving he works on his own terms ahead of one of the oddest films of 2013…

Another beardy Onion layer up to good things this month was Matt Berry, who was quietly preparing to unleash his new album, Kill The Wolf. May and June would see an awful lot of Berry activity, but April was no push-over, either.  First off, his radio series I, Regress… returned to the airwaves, and he went on to release the first snippet of his new album with a track called The Devil Inside Me

He wasn’t the only one returning, either. Rhys Thomas brought back his incredibly popular Radio 4 show Down The Line for a fifth run – the sixth if you include short-lived tv spin-off Bellamy’s People. Once again it featured Thomas’ fellow Fast Show veterans Paul Whitehouse, Charlie Higson, Simon Day and the late, great Felix Dexter. Also along for the ride were Look Around You star Robert Popper, Big Train(and It’s Kevin) actress Amelia Bullmore, Citizen Khanwriter Adil Ray, and another TVO regular (and Rhys’ wife), Lucy Montgomery.

Also back this month were Boosh veterans and indie-folk legends The Ralfe Band, who released the single Come On Go Wild from their new album, Son Be Wise, and toured as support to Manchester’s finest ever band, I Am Kloot.  A video for the single followed on 1st May, which can be seen below.

This month also saw us bid farewell to Life’s Too Short, which returned for a one-off special at Easter. Sadly lacking in Matt Holness magic (Matt was a regular in the show’s first and only series), it nevertheless found the time to bring back Colin Hoult as Warwick Davis‘ useless psychic, Brian. Also along for the ride were telly veterans, Les Dennis, Keith Chegwin and Shaun Williamson, as well as former Batman star Val Kilmer. A fine send-off, then, for a show that ended way too soon.

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Make Dave Proud

25 Nov
© owen and the eyeballs

© owen and the eyeballs

We’ve already mentioned that Dave Brown will be signing copies of The Mighty Book of Boosh at Proud Camden tomorrow, but now we can tell you more about what is in store.

The evening starts at 6.30pm when Dave will be signing copies of the book, you do not need to buy the book there to get it signed, so if you already have one you can take it along.

8pm sees the start of an evening of live music featuring Tuner, Owen and The Eyeballs and a DJ Set by Dave Brown, all alongside Dave’s Behind the Boosh exhibition of pictures of The Mighty Boosh.

To take part in this unforgettable evening of music and pictures reserve your place by emailing guestlist@proudgalleries.co.uk now.

Ape Saves The Apes

24 Nov

© Dave Brown

Dave Brown has donated a signed print from his Behind The Boosh photography exhibition to help raise money for the Sumatran Oragutan Society (SOS).

The black and white image, featuring Noel Fielding and Julian Barratt, is part of SOS’s charity ebay auction. There are 17 lots in total, all of which you can see here. The signed Mighty Boosh print has a starting price of £75, and at the time of writing there are 6 days left to bid.

For more details and to place your bid click here.

Dave has long been an active supporter of the charity, most recently growing a beard as part of a drive to raise awareness of the Orangutans’ plight.

If you’re interested in following SOS’s fundraising activities check out their twitter feed.  To find out what you can do to help visit their website. Go on, it’s for a great cause!

Win Noel Fielding’s Hat

14 Nov
© canterburytimes.co.uk

© canterburytimes.co.uk

Yes, that’s right, you can be the proud owner of the hat worn by Noel Fielding in the TV series of The Mighty Boosh!

The hat and mask – signed ‘Vince’, are part of a sealed-bids auction, held by Tankerton Football Club to raise cash for a new ground for young footballers in Whitstable.

The hat and mask are not the only TVO related items in the auction – here are a selection of some of the lots available:

Lot 1: The Mighty Boosh

The very hat worn by Noel Fielding as Vince Noir in the hit TV series.  Lot comprises one black Elizabeth Parker hat and one Colette Elcock Chameleon mask signed ‘Vince’

Lot 3: Lenny Henry

A limited edition Lenny Henry print photo signed by photographer Dave Brown

Lot 4: Vic Reeves

A plate of original artwork by Vic Reeves from his Vast Encyclopedia of World Knowledge. The page is signed by photographer Dave Brown

Lot 5: Bob Mortimer

A limited edition Bob Mortimer print photo signed by photographer Dave Brown.

Lot 15: Horrible Histories

A box set of Horrible Histories Series 1 to 3 signed by the cast

There are also football and cricket shirts, tickets to see Russell Brand live, theatre tickets, DVD’s and books and many other items, many of them signed by the stars of stage and screen.

If you want to take part in the auction, you have to send a sealed bid by email  by 6pm on Sunday 24th. Full instructions and details of all the lots can be found at the Canterbury Times Website.

Why not have a go? It’s for a good cause and someone has to win!

Dave Brown Book Signing

10 Nov

© Proud

Dave Brown will be signing copies of The Mighty Book of Boosh at Proud Camden later this month.

The signing will take place on 26th November at the gallery that’s currently hosting Dave’s Behind The Boosh photography exhibition. Numbers are limited, so if you’d like to reserve your place at the event email booksigning@proudgalleries.co.uk now.

We’ve been unable to find out what time the signing is taking place or if you have to buy the book there in order to get it signed (we’re guessing a fair few of you already have it), but hopefully Proud will let you know everything you need to know when you email them.

If you happen to have any of these answers, please do let us know. Thanks!

Editor’s Note: Apparently the signing runs 6.30-8pm and you have to buy a book to reserve a spot. Boo! Thanks to Lisa and Velvet Nadya for this info.

Bingo & The Beehive

31 Oct

© Jennifer Balcombe

Mr Bingo is one of the behind the scenes artists that we write about at The Velvet Onion. He’s one of those craftsmen who quietly help to make the world which inhabits these pages more visually distinctive. His uniquely comical illustrations have graced Mighty Boosh books and Rich Fulcher live shows, although the scope of what he does goes way beyond TVO’s remit.

This week limited edition prints of Mr Bingo’s iconic illustration of Amy Winehouse’s hair go on sale to raise money for the Amy Winehouse Foundation. Mr Bingo very kindly agreed to talk to us about this, his infamous and hugely popular art project Hate Mail, and how he got to know the Boosh boys.

© Mr Bingo

Hello Mr Bingo, and welcome to TVO. Can you tell us how you got involved in the Amy Winehouse Foundation project? 

A design agency called THEM are in charge of branding The Amy Winehouse Foundation. They know my work and approached me about doing a Hair Portrait of her. Hair portraits only work with certain people and Amy’s look lends itself perfectly to it.

I’m really pleased to be involved; I thought Amy was great and I’m a fan of her music, so when they approached me I was really keen to get on board.

What has the response been like from Amy’s fans? 

From what I’ve seen, they’re really into it, which is great! You always get the odd “where’s the rest of the face?” comment, but that’s the internet for you.

She’s got a huge global fan base so hopefully the print will fly out to lots of different places.

Your Hair Portraits are incredibly well-liked (to the extent that people nick the designs and turn them into t-shirts – the bastards!). What inspired you to do the first one? 

© Mr Bingo

I was asked to contribute some work to a group show in 2007, so I just decided to try drawing people’s hair with nothing else and I made some prints (Star Wars being the first one). The way I always approach doing new prints is to create something that I’d like on my own wall and then hope that other people will want the same thing on theirs.

The curly ones take the longest, especially Slash from Guns N Roses. Actually the longest one I ever did was the Skatebeard which took a whole week, and I was still finishing it on the train on the way to the exhibition!

For the Boosh hair portrait Bollo was the most difficult because it was really hard to work out where the hair on the face kind of started. He’s an animal so he’s extra complicated!

Talking of The Mighty Boosh, how did you end up working with them?

I met Dave Brown in 2006. He was running a competition at the V&A village fete where people were challenged to draw Queen Victoria in one minute without taking your pen off the paper. I was awarded first prize!

Then Dave bought a set of Hair portrait prints off me, we had a beer and became friends. Weirdly, I hadn’t really seen The Mighty Boosh before I met him, so I checked it out and of course totally loved it.

© Fibredesign

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A Glimpse Behind The Boosh

26 Oct

© Proud Camden

Unless you’ve been living under a rock, most of you will by now be aware that Dave Brown’s behind-the-scenes photos of The Mighty Boosh have become an exhibition, Behind the Boosh, which is currently showing at Proud Camden.  A few of our gang were lucky enough to be at the opening night; here’s a summary of what it’s all about from Velveteer Mog:

© Mog / The Velvet Onion

The opening night of Behind the Boosh was buzzing. The gallery was full of friends and fans, including the Mayor of Camden (!), and a bevy of TVO-connected folk such as Noel Fielding, Julia Davis, Tom Meeten, Steve Oram, Arnab Chanda, Nigel Coan, Barunka O’Shaughnessy and Mr Bingo - plus Dave Brown of course.

You may feel like you’ve seen a significant chunk of Behind the Boosh reproduced in the various newspapers and websites that have been writing about the show. Trust me, it’s worth seeing the pictures in the flesh if you can.

The images themselves are undeniably aesthetically pleasing, and all the more so in larger dimensions than the recent online coverage has provided. But more than that, the photographs really come to life when viewed in the physical form: from the gentle undulations of the photographic paper beneath the glass of the frames to the signature delicately scratched onto the bottom right hand corner of every shot, it lends the images a warmth and authenticity that feels just right for the Boosh. It’s something you simply don’t get from a computer screen. The real life photographs present personal glimpses into their world as opposed to being just a visual report of something that happened.

© Dave Brown

Some of the photographs are so familiar they’ve become synonymous with the Boosh ‘brand'; it’s odd to think that someone actually took them. Others have never been seen before, and for those of us who are familiar with the TV show’s visual history, it’s these which have the greatest initial impact. An ambiguously moody shot of Noel Fielding and Julian Barratt in Buxton, which draws you in and holds you there, being a case in point.

Some of the photos depict the Boosh as a modern day rock band on tour: skinny jeans, tousled hair, stages, tour buses. By contrast, the black and white images from behind the scenes of the TV show have a timeless quality about them – the costumes, the intense conversations and the camera and lighting equipment that frames the shots makes them feel like they could have been taken in the early days of television.

© Dave Brown

Across the exhibition we get to see The Mighty Boosh in all its colours and shapes: the daftness and the the seriousness, the joy and the boredom, the camaraderie and the loneliness.

Throughout, their personalities come across as human, likeable and open for scrutiny. The result of the photographer being a trusted part of the story, one suspects. Dave’s absence from the images is the obvious downside of this arrangement, however.

The only complaint one could make about the exhibition is that it ends too soon. When we came to the final picture we were left wanting more; as if we’d been offered a window into the fascinating world of the Boosh rather than being told the full story.  We live in hope for a part 2!

For more photos from the opening night visit Proud’s Facebook page. Behind the Boosh is running at Camden Proud until 1st December, so there’s still time to get yourself down there.

A Bit More Behind The Boosh

22 Oct

© Dave Brown

In today’s Time Out (London) magazine there was a small piece about Dave Brown‘s photography exhibition, Behind the Boosh, which kicks off at Proud Camden  this Thursday, 24th October.

In the article members of the Boosh talk about three further exclusive images that form part of the exhibition. Of the picture above, Rich Fulcher says: “It looks as though Eleanor is thinking: One sock lowered = extreeeeemely available.” Oh how we love thee, Rich.

To read the article in full click here. And don’t forget that you can visit the exhibition yourself for free; it runs until 1st December.

 

The Boosh Is Loose In CAL-I-FOR-NI-AAAAA!!!!!

22 Oct

© Gina R Snape

This weekend saw The Mighty Boosh play two shows in California, with a last minute gig at The Comedy Store being followed by Tenacious D’s well publicised Festival Supreme.

TVO’s US correspondents Gina R Snape and Teresa Whelan were on hand to document events, and this is their exclusive report…

Peelers around the globe either woke up in hazy happy disbelief or frantically searching the internet for all the glorious proof that The Mighty Boosh really did play two gigs in California this weekend.

© Gina R Snape

Have no fear! It wasn’t a dream. And The Velvet Onion was there for everything! So here’s our round-up. (Apologies for the delay. But unfortunately Naboo’s flying carpet didn’t have WiFi on our return trips home).

The Friday night benefit at The Comedy Store for Drop In The Bucket was a heck of a show. Viewers were treated to a full hour set!

Despite terrible jetlag, Naboo must have provided some incredible energy potion because the boys pulled all the stops out! Here for our readers is a TVO exclusive shot of the setlist.

Next came Festival Supreme, with an intense half hour set (sleuthy peelers can find clips on YouTube). The Boosh opened with “Electro Monk”, Julian performed Yeti solo, Noel returned to the stage for Hello Little Deer, and Old Gregg (who proclaimed he located Howard thanks to Tenacious D)  appeared for Mangina and Love Games – ending with a fan service nod to Stockholm Syndrome.

IMG_3444

Introducing the Mirrorball Suit 2.0!
© @NickYoussef

Fans went mental as Noel stripped down to Mirrorball Suit 2.0 And Julian ripped off his elbow patches to reveal elbow tassles! No Boosh show would be complete without a “Don’t Touch Me!” declaration, Noel throwing artwork into the crowd, and a healthy dousing of Bailey’s by Old Gregg. The crowd cheered for an encore when they left all too soon. (Dave Brown confirmed on twitter that they had a 30 minute pull-the-plug limitation).

Olly kept the beat in the back, and fans screamed with delight when Naboo and Bob Fossil made their appearances.

Readers are welcome to click here for the full collection of TVO photos. The events may be over, but the magic lingers. Thank you, boys, for bringing the Mighty Boosh together, coming to the States, and leaving us with tears of Oniony joy.

For more pictures from the shows, click to read more…  Continue reading

Boosh-a-thon In North Wales

20 Oct

© Mighty Boosh

Theatr Colwyn in North Wales is holding a Mighty Boosh marathon viewing session on 23rd November.

All 20 episodes from series 1-3, screened back to back, will be shown from midday to midnight! The event is being held in conjunction with the Tough Crowd photography exhibition by Dave Brown which is running at Oriel Colwyn, the gallery upstairs at Theatr Colwyn.

If that wasn’t exciting enough, Dave will be making a special appearance during the Boosh-a-thon, talking about his time with the Boosh, his Tough Crowd exhibition and his continuing work as with the Afrikids charity, which helps children in Ghana.

Just how awesome does this sound?? Tickets are £10 and early booking is recommended. Proceeds from the Boosh-A-Thon are going to Afrikids.

Currently there doesn’t appear to be any facility to book online, so we suggest you contact the theatre box office on 01492 872000 to book. The box office is open Monday – Friday, 10am-5pm. Alternatively, you can purchase tickets at Venue Cymru, Monday to Saturday 10am – 7pm.

So who’s going in fancy dress then?…

 

Be At The Behind The Boosh Exhibition Launch

19 Oct

© Dave Brown

As we’ve mentioned previously, Dave Brown‘s exhibition of Mighty Boosh photos, Behind The Boosh, will be showing at Proud Camden from 24th October. Now you can be there on the launch night!

The private view will run until 8pm on 23rd October, when the doors open to the public – and tickets are available (over 18s only). The event, at Proud, promises a night of music inspired by the Boosh surrounded by the exhibition and (assuming that they stay beyond the private view – although there are no guarantees), its stars.

Tickets cost £3 in advance (50pm booking fee) or £5 on the door and you can purchase them here. Get in!

Boosh Show Tonight – The Latest

18 Oct

© Mog / The Velvet Onion

It’s been a dramatic day and a half for Boosh fans stateside. Visa delays, cancelled gigs and newly scheduled shows mean that our twitter feed has been awash with questions and comments for the past 36 hours. With The Mighty Boosh scheduled to play tonight, we figured an update might be helpful:

The Boosh will be performing on tonight’s bill at The Comedy Store, 8433 Sunset Boulevard. This is a charity gig in aid of  Drop In The Bucket, an amazing organisation that help to builds wells in Africa. This is the very same gig that Noel Fielding was originally billed for; The Boosh have replaced Noel (obviously he’ll be involved!). For the full line-up visit the event page here.

At the time of writing there are a small number of tickets still available, although the price has increased from $30 to $40 today. You can buy them here – but be quick!

Doors open at 7.30pm (or an 8.30pm start time), when seats will be allocated on a first come, first served basis. The venue are strongly advising on an arrival time of no earlier than 7pm, but we know you lot better than that! For what it’s worth, for the recent London warm ups a hardcore 10-15 people started queueing a couple of hours before doors opened, and everyone else turned up half an hour beforehand. To be honest, everyone gets a good view in a small venue, so if you have a ticket you can relax in the knowledge that you’ll have a good evening regardless of how early you queue.

We’ve also been told by the venue that photography won’t be allowed, but an official photographer will be on hand to capture the show for posterity. We’ll do our utmost to get hold of the shots and share them with you.

We hope everyone has an amazing time. A couple of our gang will be there, so if you see them say hi.

Please note that the Boosh’s appearance at Festival Supreme remains unaffected by the visa hoo-ha, and they will be performing as planned.

Onion Talking: Neil Cole is… Man Vs Ride!

16 Oct

Tonight sees the proper UK launch of Man Vs Ride – the new science adventure show featuring Neil Cole taking on some of the biggest and best rollercoasters, thrill rides, races and unusual modes of transportation in the world.

© National Geographic

© National Geographic

The show airs on National Geographic at 10pm, and to celebrate, we thought we’d catch up with one of the busiest of TVO’s regular faces.

The results are below…

Neil Cole’s resume has to be one of the most varied in the business.  By day, he’s an alternative comedian, a theatrical actor of stage and screen, a radio dj, journalist and television presenter.  In his time, he’s presented Olympic Games coverage and the World Rally Championships, interviewed celebs on the red carpet for NME, and played Puck in A Midsummer Night’s Dream.  One could almost suggest “Renaissance Man” be his middle name.

© Dave Brown

© Dave Brown

To TVO, it’s his comedy work that has attracted the majority of our attention.  A long-standing friend of The Mighty Boosh, Neil first shared the stage with them back in 1998, when Noel Fielding, Julian Barratt & Rich Fulcher guested in his Edinburgh show Psycho Vertigo Disco.

Over the years, he’s also worked with Dave Brown (on his 2011 Edinburgh show Neil By Mouth), Tom Meeten, Steve Oram, James Bachman, Barunka O’Shaughnessy, Waen Shepherd and The Actor Kevin Eldon to name but a few.  He opened for Russell Brand on tour, popped up in The Day They Came To Suck Out Our Brains, starred in Uxbridge Swain with James Wren & Richard Glover, and was a founder member of seminal cult sketch troupe Pros From Dover.

Today, we’re catching up with him to discuss his latest project – the epic Man Vs Ride for National Geographic.  Already airing in Australia, the series sneaked onto the UK version of National Geographic last week, without anyone – least of all Neil – noticing.

As such, TVO and Cole have decided to treat tonight’s airing, with a bit more prep time, as the (un)official launch.  It is, after all, a show worthy of our – and your – attention.

Asked to describe this globe-trotting documentary series in a nutshell, Neil suggests: “In a nutshell, it’s about everything you do to get OUT of your nutshell. It’s a popular-science look at thrill rides, adrenaline, roller coasters etc and what effects they have on our bodies.”

“Of all the amazing jobs I’ve done in my life,” he continues, “THIS is the one that everybody says “You call that WORK?!” – and I am very aware that there are rollercoaster fanatics who spend all their spare time and money to make a couple of theme park pilgrimages per year, maybe even per lifetime.  As someone who already travels a lot for work, this was pretty special.” Continue reading

Come With Us Now……..

15 Oct

© NME.com

Lucky American Peelers who can get to Los Angeles on Thursday are in for a treat – The Mighty Boosh are performing live at Largo at the Coronet, 366 N La Cienega Boulevard!

This will be one of the rare occasions all the boys have been together since the last huge tour so it is going to be a really special night.

So everyone who felt they were missing out last week when most of The Boosh were performing in London will be able to get their tickets for a fantastic night, which will also include Rich Fulcher!

Tickets are $25 from here, don’t hang about they are bound to sell out very quickly.

A Bit Of Boosh At The Pleasance

13 Oct

© Ryan Taylor @ The Pleasance

Plans to keep the details of the recent Mighty Boosh warm up shows out of the public domain seem to have been derailed by the giddy connectivity of social media. So we figured it would be polite of us to do a quick round up of what’s out there for those amongst us who don’t frequent the fan forums and blogs:

© Becky

Last week’s Boosh shows at Soho Theatre were marked by their unexpected degree of polish; by contrast, this Thursday’s show at The Pleasance Islington felt very much like being let in to watch a rehearsal (which, afterall, is exactly what a warm-up is). What’s surprising is that the evening was none the worse for it.

For the assembled audience, the technical glitches and subsequent on-stage ad libbing felt like being invited in to watch – and be part of – the inner workings of Boosh. We got the chance to spend an evening in their company, as opposed to simply watching them perform on stage.

Although none of it was planned, there were many moments that made this gig feel special: the ad hoc dialogue between Julian Barratt on stage and his adorable kids in the front row; the sight of three monks leaning helplessly over a silent drum kit; Noel Fielding‘s never-ending impersonation of a fold-out map; and the clever one-liners, glances and giggles that frequently erupted from the stage.

© Lustache Licker

The Boosh Band performance which wrapped around these improvised moments was still solid and vital, carried along by the bubbling on-stage chemistry between Noel and Julian.

It’s a credit to their professionalism and talent that the show lost none of its life force and charm when events nudged it along a different path. In fact, the verdict afterwards from the Boosh friends and family who turned out in force for the gig was that it was like being back at the Hen & Chickens all those years ago. A little shambolic perhaps, but that’s part of their charm – and the magic is still very much there.

For those of you who want the spoilery details, check out The Mirror’s review (it’s nice to see a tabloid being supportive for a change!).

And for those of you who are lucky enough to be going to Festival Supreme this week, you’re in for a treat! We reckon the Mighty Tent is going to be the place to be:

© Festival Supreme

Many thanks to Becky & Lustache Licker for helping us out with photos. Sadly no one managed to get a money shot of Tom Meteen‘s Karate Johnson!

What’s that? You want another one? Oh, go on then…

© Becky

Line Up Announced For Thursday’s Boosh Gig

7 Oct

© Conor Masterson/Phrased & Confused

The full list of support acts for Thursday’s third and final Mighty Boosh warm-up show at The Pleasance Islington has been confirmed.

Following a well-received and rather wonderful turn at last week’s Soho Theatre gigs, Stuart Silver will return to the stage this week. Expect beguilingly meandering comedy that roams around your head for a few seconds before you feel the full force of its cleverness. And some astonishing ukele playing.

New to this week’s bill is one of TVO’s favourite live acts: Tom Meeten. Ususally seen as part of Oram & Meeten with Steve Oram, this will be a rare opportunity to see Tom flying solo. Based on his past form, we’re in for an evening of charming, offbeam physical comedy that’s as smart as it is silly.

Both artists come armed with a myriad of Boosh-flavoured connections, and stylistically they provide the perfect segue to the main draw.  We’re counting down the days…

New Boosh Track To Air On XFM

4 Oct

© unknown

It’s been a Booshy few days at TVO – but we figured you probably wouldn’t mind!

We’ve already tweeted that Lliana Bird will be playing a Mighty Boosh track on her XFM radio show tomorrow, but now we’ve gleaned some more exciting information about it that we wanted to share…

It will be the world exclusive first play of a new Boosh song called Sunflash & Bublay, which was recorded at the iconic Electric Ladyland studios in New York as part of their (as yet unreleased) album. The record was produced by Dave Westlake (Sneaker Pimps) and the Boosh.

As well as playing the new track, Birdy will also be speaking to Noel Fielding during her show, which you can hear tomorrow (Saturday) between 4 and 7pm.

According to XFM’s website, this is happening in honour of the anniversary of the first airing of a Monty Python show on the same date in history.

The Boosh Are Back… Live At The Pleasance

4 Oct

TVO is delighted to confirm another Boosh warm-up show ahead of their performance at Festival Supreme later this month.

© David Chalkley

The boys will perform at Pleasance Theatre, Islington on 10th October and tickets can be grabbed (we suggest very quickly) from their website, here.

This presents an extra chance to see their warm-up show after its first outings at the Soho Theatre. These events went down a storm and you can read our review of the evening here.

So what are you waiting for? Buy, buy, buy!

Mighty Fine: Boosh At The Soho Theatre

2 Oct

© Mog/The Velvet Onion

If you’re a regular reader of The Velvet Onion it won’t have passed you by that The Mighty Boosh performed two warm up shows at the Soho Theatre this week. We were lucky enough to be there to witness the epicness. Here’s Velveteer Mog’s non-spoilery report:

A long time ago I came across something wonderful. It was intelligent and warm, charming and whimsical; it took me to fantastical worlds and gifted me laughter and fierce friendships. It was unique, special and precious. Slowly, over time, it was discovered by more and more people, and because they’re only human, they too fell in love with it. Soon there were enough of us to fill the O2 arena several times over for The Mighty Boosh.

Since then we’ve had panel shows and plays, art exhibitions, voice-overs and tabloid tittle-tattle. We’ve grown up and grown older, and so have they. The world has changed, and now there’s a newer version of the latest thing. So the excitement that the promise of two Boosh shows generated came tempered with the fear of being disappointed. How could it possibly live up to expectations?

© Mog/The Velvet Onion

On Sunday and Monday night the downstairs room at the Soho Theatre was buzzing with eager anticipation. The hopeful old guard rubbed shoulders with expectant younger fans, who filled the front row with camera phones, hair colours and chatter.

The lights dimmed, and Julian and Noel’s voices rolled out onto the stage, closely followed by the two of them in person: the familiar pairing of the puppy-like energy of Fielding and the hesitant groundedness of Barratt. The magic was still there; whenever Noel and Julian took to the stage, the room glowed.

Genuine, clever, witty and frequently bonkers, the Boosh’s performance was perfectly pitched. I’ve rarely seen two artists more in tune with each other and their audience. And like all great double acts, the whole is somehow greater than the sum of its parts. It felt like we were all sharing a giant warm bath of joy.

Seeing them live again also served as a sharp reminder as to why they reached such dizzying heights of success: they’re bloody talented – from the brain-fizzing freshness of their ideas and the razor-sharp wordplay, to their amazing musicianship (hands up all those fellas who left the gig with a man crush on Julian?).

Yes, they falter at times, and you’re never far from feeling that they’re making it up as they go along, but that’s part of the Boosh’s charm (and afterall, they were warm-up shows). Besides, the gigs’ occasional ramshackle-ness felt like a nod to the early years, which is no bad thing.

© Mog/The Velvet Onion

Woven around the Boosh’s appearances were three support acts: Joey Page (moments of brilliance), Stuart Silver (fantastic – well worth checking out if you get the chance) and Holly Burns (perhaps not the most obvious choice for the night).

The final 40 minutes of the show consisted of the Boosh Band, playing tight, fresh twists on their musical classics. We’ll never see Electro Boy in the same light again. Funny, inspired and smart – and just a bit wonky. Dave Brown also deserves a special shout out for THAT VOICE. This was most definitely not the “shambola” promised by Noel via twitter.

Marriage proposals were made (Sunday), Baileys was swigged (Monday) and a likely knowing reference made to an infamous fanfic*. Shrieks of astonishment reverberated along the front row.

The Mighty Boosh: charming, folksy, weird and inclusive, this was them at their original best. The stadium rock star comedy machine felt like a distant memory – and long may it remain that way!

In respect of the fans who’ll be seeing the show at Festival Supreme, photos were only allowed during the first half of Sunday night – so this review has been written in the spirit of avoiding spoilers too. Hopefully the essence of the show hasn’t been lost in the non-specificity.

* Alas, apparently mere coincidence.

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