Skip to content
Comedy

Bigtop Stage

Booking PG-rated comedy for all the family is hard, but we hit the mark most of the time!

James Acaster

James Acaster

James Acaster’s stand-up switches seamlessly between telling outrageously whimsical stories and uncovering the hidden hilarity in everyday mundanity. His “adventures” with cheese graters are outrageously funny in their familiarity.

You’ll recognise James, one of the most endearing comedians on the UK circuit, from his countless TV appearances on shows like Mock The Week, Would I Lie To You, 8 Out Of 10 Cats and Nevermind The Buzzcocks. With such experience under his belt, it’s no wonder he received five consecutive nominations for ‘Best Comedy Show’ at the 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 & 2016 Edinburgh Fringe Festivals.

Some of our favourite work of his, though, is Classic Scrapes, where James appeared on Josh Widdicombe’s XFM show to tell the tales of his freakishly frequent fiascos, like writing off his parents’ Ford Fiesta or getting stranded on Alcatraz. Though we hope our Saturday night headliner will get through his set scrape-free, it would be exciting to be immortalised in one of Acaster’s fables...

Daliso Chaponda

Daliso Chaponda

Even Deer Shedders not necessarily into their stand-up comedy will likely recognise our Sunday night headliner. Not a regular at the Comedy Store? No worries: Daliso Chaponda has likely appeared in your living room more than once, having been a finalist on Britain’s Got Talent.

The cheeky Chaponda is the type of comedian simply not fazed when talking about subjects some might find a little uncomfortable. And for some reason – likely his whimsical character and lovable cheeriness – his audiences are never fazed either.

Born to a Malawian politician, Chaponda actually only began to perform stand-up in 2001 when he moved to Canada. Informing and entertaining us on subjects like identity and life as an African in modern Britain, we’re delighted to welcome one of the fastest rising comedians in the land to Baldersby Park.

Rachel Parris

Rachel Parris

Presenter of Thronecast (yes, we really are that nerdy when it comes to Game of Thrones) and part of the BBC’s Murder in Successville cast, Rachel Parris has worked on a fair few shows we’ve really loved.

Recently, though, the comic truly arrived at the forefront of British comedy through her starring role as news correspondent of common sense on BBC’s The Mash Report. Parris’s surprise satirical lecturing about #MeToo to Nish Kumar, who hadn’t been allowed to read the script, was both an emphatic takedown of the movement’s detractors and a hilarious method of making her usually cool and calm co-presenter squirm a little.

Not just an explainer of moral reasoning for morons, Parris is also a proficient pianist with a great voice, employing this in her seriously funny stand-up routines.

Justin Moorhouse

Justin Moorhouse

Kids can be cruel – we all know that. Spare a thought then for our comedians, who have to face one heck of a tough crowd. You thought Christmas work parties at The Frog and Bucket Comedy Club were hard? Good luck getting a bad joke past a bunch of giddy Deer Shedders, geed up with space dust, bouncing after the bubble show.

Enter heckle-deflector extraordinaire, Justin Moorhouse, expert at knocking the crazy kids down a peg or two and calming the chaos. That is, of course, when he doesn’t have them surfing on inflatable sofas or wrestling in the Big Top. But even during these stunts, we’re forever glad it’s him and not us.

Returning once again as MC at his festival home away from home, our favourite northern funny man will be back in his element ensuring Saturday Night Live at the Big Top teeters nicely on the fine line between the most high-brow PG comedy programme around… and absolute anarchy!

Spencer Jones

Spencer Jones

Spencer Jones recently shot to fame through his leading role as Will Kempe, historical Shakespearean clown and superstar of his day, in Ben Elton’s Upstart Crow, alongside David Mitchell playing Shakespeare himself.

Channelling a sort of renaissance David Brent, with bags of unearned self-confidence and very little self-awareness, Jones is nothing if not daft. His on-stage alter ego, The Herbert, is the ultimate clown, reeling off gag after gag, be they physical or aural, employing his trusty loop pedal to create surreal segments of sound.

The Herbert will guide Deer Shedders through a day in the life of an idiot, starring a life changing email, a son with big questions and *a lot* of tennis balls.

Abandoman

Abandoman

Abandoman’s live show is perhaps the most intelligent and entertaining interactive comedy experience around. Labelled “improvised hip-hop comedy”, Rob Broderick and his band of musical dudes first like to get to know the audience, asking them various questions about their life and what they might have in their pockets, among countless other things, before writing a unique song revolving around their answers.

The light-speed wit of Abandoman is genuinely astonishing, as he thinks up zingers in seconds whilst spitting bars that could match… well, maybe not Jay Z, but certainly Vanilla Ice.

We’ve been after booking this hilarious Irish wordsmith for some time and we think, given the Deer Shed audience’s penchant for participation, this is a show that could go down in Big Top – maybe even hip hop – history…

Kiri Pritchard-Mclean

Kiri Pritchard-Mclean

Kiri Pritchard-Mclean is an absolute firecracker of a comedian. Often sequined and wearing clothes that sparkle as much as her personality, akin to some kind of human disco ball, Mclean is renowned for her topical, energetic, deft and sometimes dark comedy.

The seasoned Welsh stand-up has been making something of a name for herself in the short time she's being performing comedy, and has achieved further success as writer and director of the multi-award winning sketch group, Gein's Family Giftshop.

MC for all the Friday night Bit Top fun, Kiri Pritchard-Mclean will provide much oomph throughout the evening... not that Deer Shedders need it!

Brendon Burns

Brendon Burns

Throughout his career as a multi award-winning comic (his awards cabinet even features the coveted Edinburgh Comedy award from 2008) Brendon Burns has never been afraid to be frank. His style fits snugly in the centre of a Venn diagram on comedy and philosophy, challenging convention, in the company of greats like George Carlin.

Brendon’s career was launched back in the nineties by Channel 4’s hilarious The 11 O’Clock Show, which also propelled Ricky Gervais and Sacha Baron Cohen to fame. In the Australian’s latest show, Mansplainin’, he ironically attempts to *gulp* defend and redefine masculinity. He sure picks his moments, eh?

Now wiser, more energetic and eloquent than ever, the comedy legend Brendon Burns’ firebrand act will be some match for the Big Top audience at Deer Shed 9!

Paul Currie

Paul Currie

A comic who led The Skinny to declare “A new standard for the Fringe has been set” and Stewart Lee to remark “I’ll be back to see him [at the Fringe] every year now”.

Paul Currie is a former street performer who introduces the skilful absurdity and randomness of the art form to his high octane stand-up comedy act. The award winning Northern Irish clown travelled all around the UK and Europe showcasing his many talents before beginning life on the comedy circuit in 2004.

Adept at everything from “serious juggling” to mime and playing emotional games of Russian roulette with his pet-puppet monkey, Currie’s madcap antics are the perfect match for our raucous Big Top tent.

Bec Hill

Bec Hill

This Aussie-born comedian, who’s now based in the UK, is carving out a name for herself on the comedy circuit. She’s a decade into her career, which started out at the Melbourne International Comedy festival, and is best known for her quirky, pun-fuelled shows that include a large dose of arts and craft.

Not your usual stand-up fodder, granted, but Hill consistently manages to weave hilarious stories using paper puppets akin to a children’s pop-up book into her set.

Bec Hill is a regular at the Edinburgh Fringe, winning the first ever Barry Award for Best Show in 2014. The younger comedy fans may recognise her from the CBBC’s The Dog Ate My Homework, making her an absolute must see for the whole family.

Harriet Dyer

Harriet Dyer

Harriet Dyer’s 2016 show ‘We'd Prefer Someone a Bit More Mainstream’ refers to the star’s refusal to conform to conventions of comedy. Her unique on-stage effervescence manner is summed up nicely here by Broadway Baby: “Dyer exists in a joyful equilibrium, at the point where self-depreciation and a total embracement of oddness meet in utterly likeable harmony.”

The Cornwall-born comic is never afraid to launch impulsively throughout her performances into a plethora of offbeat, side-splitting tangents that only the most eccentric of minds could hope to pursue with an audience still hanging on every word.

Harriet is one of those stand-ups you just wish you could recruit as your best friend, with her infectious, joyful energy permeating each room she performs in. Now she’s preparing to spread that joy all around Baldersby Park this July, and we simply cannot wait.

Abigoliah Schamaun

Abigoliah Schamaun

It’s pronounced Abigoliah Schamaun. Though it might sound like I’m currently giving you a lecture on pronunciation, that’s actually the name of this hilarious comedian’s widely acclaimed, biographical 2014 Edinburgh Fringe show. That was our introduction to this frank, funny, and unapologetic New Yoyker, and we’ve been huge fans ever since.

We’ve always wondered what it’d be like to be a successful comedian. When you’ve moved on from the working men’s clubs, is it all champagne and strawberries in the bath tub? In this video, Abigoliah confirms to us that yes… yes it is. [Note: we wanted to use a font representing sarcasm here but Comic Sans is strictly banned from this website].

As the only yoga instructor in comedy, Abigoliah Schamaun often begins her act with an open heart chakra (don’t worry, we had to Google it too), welcoming her audience with warmth and excitement akin to seeing all your best friends at once!

Sarah Bennetto

Sarah Bennetto

Sarah Bennetto is one of the Deer Shed team’s favourite comics around. She kindly agreed to perform at our first ever comedy fringe showcase on the other side of the North Yorkshire Moors in Robin Hood’s Bay: cue many expert gags comparing the quaint seaside village to Balamory or a place conjured up in the imagination of Enid Blyton.

Originally from Australia, you can forgive Sarah for experiencing a little culture shock, but it’s safe to say she’s now a fully-fledged Deer Shedder.

Not only has she performed at every Edinburgh Fringe since 2002 and written for numerous TV and radio shows, but Sarah is the founder of experimental comedy collective Storytellers’ Club which sees comedians of all backgrounds sit in front of a faux log fire to tell their funniest stories. But more on that later…

Katie Mulgrew

Katie Mulgrew

Katie Mulgrew just loves making people laugh. It’s kinda her thing. That bodes well, doesn’t it? In fact, being funny runs in the family – her father before her was also a comedian. Despite Katie trying hard not to take after her dad, she clearly failed as she’s become one our favourite comedians around!

The Lancashire comic has written and performed three widely acclaimed solo stand up shows for the Edinburgh Fringe, and is currently writing a fourth when she’s not consumed by being a mother and trying to keep the tiny human she’s made alive. A familiar struggle for many Deer Shedders.

Katie has appeared on BBC Radio 4 and Radio 2 as well as winning the 2015 Liverpool Hope playwriting prize with her play OMNIBUS. We’re delighted this multi-talented comedian will be joining us for Deer Shed 9.

Elf Lyons

Elf Lyons

Elf Lyons – aka Emily-Anne Lyons – decided she wanted to be a comedian at the age of 15. Now aged 26 and touring her comedy across Britain, France, Germany and Australia, it’s safe to say her childhood dream came true.

Whilst taking academic steps towards her goal, achieving a BA in Drama and an MA in Theatre & Performance, Elf was a finalist in the Funny Women Awards and also studied at the oversized feet of École Philippe Gaulie, the legendary clown.

Fresh from performing ‘Swan’, her 5-star daffy take on Swan Lake, at the Edinburgh Fringe, the giraffe-limbed raconteur is heading to Baldersby Park for a stand up set that will take Deer Shed 9 by storm.

Tom Taylor

Tom Taylor

As an artist Tom Taylor mixes two of our favourite pastimes: live music and live comedy. His unique brand of musicomedy is smart and silly in equal measure, boasting an impressive stock of quirky, and very funny, keyboard accompanied one liners. A favourite of ours being the immensely catchy “I bought some bird seed in 1995 but it still hasn’t grown into a bird”.

Tom’s talents, along with being the only person in the world able to pull off his favourite blue-ducky-jumper-brown-chino combo, also extend to acting and writing, having penned and performed two critically acclaimed one-man murder mysteries.

With a dry charm that defies any audience not to endear to him in an instant, Tom Taylor is an absolute gem in our comedy line-up.

Tony Basnett

Tony Basnett

Culture clashes can make for hilarious material, but we still love a local comedian at Deer Shed. Step up Hartlepool-born, Leeds-educated and Manchester-residing Tony Basnett. Introducing us to the characters of his hometown, Tony quotes, “Greggs… for lunch? Do I look posh?” with typical northern charm.

Tony is a relatable, upbeat and playful comic who’s often travelling across the country to perform at all the top comedy clubs. Not content with just performing, also runs the comedy nights under the name Trapdoor Comedy Clubs, working with some of the biggest names in comedy (Chris Ramsey, Glenn Wool, Jon Richardson).

With a mischievous and positive style, audiences seem to warm to Tony Basnett the second he steps on stage. Deer Shed’s Big Top stage is his latest test, and we know he’s up to the challenge!

Birthday Girls

Birthday Girls

Party legends of Deer Shed get ready: Birthday Girls are coming to a tent near you! This comedy collective promise hilariously high-octane sketches, care-free dancing and outrageous jokes.

Birthday Girls have enjoyed sold out runs with their smash-hit comedy sketch shows at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and Soho Theatre and have featured on BBC Radio 4’s Sketchorama, BBC1’s Absolutely Fabulous and ITV2’s @elevenish.

Birthday Girls are Beattie Edmondson (the funny one), Rose Johnson (the funny one) and Camille Ucan (the funny one), also known as self-professed “sh!t hot party legends”.

Sarah Bennetto's Story Teller's Club

Sarah Bennetto's Story Teller's Club

Sarah Bennetto is the genius behind Storytellers’ Club – an evening where comedians settle in for a night in front of a faux fire to recount their funniest tales. Usually held in the cosy attic above the legendary Prince of Wales Theatre in Brixton, for one Saturday only Sarah is transporting the club to Baldersby Park.

Not only that, but joining Sarah Bennetto’s Storytellers’ Club will be Deer Shed 9 comedy headliner James Acaster and comic news correspondent Rachel Parris.

We’ll once again be utilising the versatility of the Obelisk tent to create a cosy story time scene set for Sarah spilling the beans on all sorts of crazy scenarios, James’s classic scrapes and Rachel’s reminiscences.

Privacy Statement