REVIEW: Ed Byrne, Grand Theatre

Ed Byrne.
Ed Byrne.
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After an opening 10 minutes which were a little slow, this turned into a terrific night.

Dublin-born Byrne is an accomplished comic who doesn’t really do one-liners. He’s more of a storyteller, carefully building sketches (often with funny asides thrown in, like his wife having two children in quick succession, by Caesarean, because she didn’t want too much of a gap between them), before ending them with a killer line.

As you’d expect from a man who quit a horticulture degree at the University of Strathclyde to try his luck at stand up, and has since appeared on several TV panel shows like Mock The Week and embarked on a string of sell-out tours, he exudes confidence and is happy talking to the audience and going off on a tangent.

This show was loosely based on the fact that he turned 40 last year and is becoming the stereotypical grumpy old man, getting annoyed by everything and anyone.

He was on stage for two halves of 45 minutes and seemed to step up the gears after the interval, his sketch towards the end about deciding to have a vasectomy, and the difficulties of maintaining a healthy love life with one’s partner when you reach a certain age, was laugh out loud brilliant.

Byrne ended the night with a headbanging air guitar session that earned him a big ovation.

Not outstanding but very, very good and a comedian who clearly knows his audience and gives them what they want.