THIS Friday (June 5) from 7pm Jigsy, starring Les Dennis, will be available for everybody to watch for free on the Liverpool’s Royal Court Youtube channel.
The theatre, like all others, has been unable to put any shows on stage since mid-March. They wanted to produce something for their audience so were delighted when Les Dennis offered to come in to record Tony Staveacre’s one man show about an aging Liverpool comic.
The show was originally performed at the Royal Court in 2012 following a successful run at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival.
Lurching unsteadily off-stage at a Liverpool working men’s club – sweat, smoke and failure clinging to his faded 70s dinner suit – Jigsy is a journeyman variety comedian, struggling for survival in a modern world that has left him far behind. The bright lights of tv fame that transformed the careers of many of his contemporaries are flickering on a distant horizon. Talking directly to the audience, Jigsy reviews his life, the ups and downs, mostly the latter. Jigsy is a one-man play that gives a glimpse into the earthy heartland of Northern comedy, and also connects with the social history of Liverpool, the spirit of Scouse, and the meaning of life. It’s a struggle, and then you die. ‘Still you have to laugh, don’t you?
Kevin Fearon, Executive Producer at Liverpool’s Royal Court, wanted to give something to the audience while the building is closed: “Theatres are living buildings. They thrive on the energy and warmth that the staff and the audience bring to them. And at this strange time it is unusually quiet and you realise how much it needs people. Our beautiful building is missing its audience.
“At the same time, our audience may be missing us. When Les Dennis called me suggesting we could record an abridged version of Jigsy, the one-man show Les performed at the Royal Court back in 2012 it seemed like a great way to give something back to them.
“So this recording of Jigsy is a gift from Les, and a thank you from us here at the Royal Court.”
Les Dennis said: “As someone who is used to being creative I needed to find an outlet. Jigsy seemed like the perfect project as it’s a one-man play so social distancing was easy. At first I thought it might be something I’d have to do remotely but when Kevin suggested doing it on set in the Royal Court studio I was thrilled.
“I feel a great affinity with the theatre and am really proud of what we have achieved. Other theatres have put work out for their audiences. We were lucky to be able to do something bespoke post Covid. I hope audiences enjoy watching.”
JIGSY will appear on https://www.youtube.com/RoyalCourtLiverpool from 7pm on Friday 5 June 2020