Myra DuBois in Eh-Up Myra at the Grand, Clapham
Christmas is all about tradition and for many of us we can’t really get into the festive mood until we’ve had a taste of South Yorkshire’s own Mrs Clause, Myra DuBois.
Last Monday we donned a festive jumper and took our seats for Rotherham’s least celebrated daughter’s annual Christmas ‘spectacular’ at the Grand in Clapham. The show started with a medley of Christmas songs played by the much put upon, by Myra, but much loved, by the audience, Sarah Bodalbhai. Myra hit the stage at warp speed in full Christmas mode, taking no prisoners, just hostages and barely taking a breath, she was on sizzling form. The show, was a mix of festive songs and some songs from musicals, a particularly physical Willkommen from Cabaret was quite something to behold. Myra was also joined by Doctor Woof for an ear splitting version of Phantom of the Opera, and long time collaborator Sooz Kemper, who added a few moments of relative calm to the night. All the musical ‘delights’ of course, serve as the fairy lights around what we are all there for, the comedy. Myra may be a marvellously off kilter, self deluded performer but Gareth Joyner is a skilled stand up comedian mixing planned routines seamlessly with ad libs and moments of gorgeous chaos. We got a mixture of topics from Christmas itself, to his starring role in panto (in Leeds apparently) to eating Stephen Hawkins, performing in clubs with darkrooms on World AIDS Day and much more, nothing was off limits. A particular highlight was Myra venturing into the audience to spread the yule love and actually some poor person’s coat around the audience as baby Jesus, as Myra said, ’that got weird’, but hilariously funny. Myra DuBois is the epitome of a fully formed character, a brilliant vehicle that allows Gareth to literally do and say anything, which is what comedy in 2017 should be about. Dave Cross.