Surrealism in a bucket

Escape artist: Simon Munnery sees his show as exploring rejection of the world'. He plays all the characters in the piece

Escape artist: Simon Munnery sees his show as exploring rejection of the world'. He plays all the characters in the piece

First published in News by

Buckethead
artsdepot
Nether Street, North Finchley
Friday, May 13, 8pm

In his latest show, comedian Simon Munnery wears a bucket over his head.

While he agrees that it looks very funny and it makes it easy for him to take on a completely different character, there is a deeper side to it.

"I thought it was more a kind of thing that could happen in the future," says the Cambridge graduate. "Like a rejection of the world. Hundreds of years ago, people used to stand up on the top of tall poles to get away from the world. Or they used to wear hair shirts. This is like a purda for men. Men can't be distracted by things like the bodies of women. In fact, men should wear buckets and women could walk around naked."

The show is a comedy play Munnery has been developing over the last three years. He started out with two other actors, then tried it alone with other characters projected on video, then he discovered that he could do all the different characters himself.

Despite working in the industry for nearly two decades and fronting television shows like BBC2's Attention Scum, the witty 38-year-old is very modest. His sweet nature comes across on stage which no doubt led to the union with his wife. They met during a gig he was doing in Australia.

"She heckled me. She said, Don't die.' My response was, Where were you at Calvary?'"

They now have one child with a second on the way.

Temporarily living in Crouch End (Munnery says it's pretty), he likes the pubs and the woodland walk from Highgate Woods to Finsbury Park.

"You can get there without treading on the pavement, only on dog poo."

Munnery grew up near Watford in a place called Bedmond, which he proudly boasts is home to the only English Pope, Nicholas Breakspear (Pope Adrian IV). Other Munnery trivia is that he went to junior school Bedmond JMI with Vinnie Jones before going to Watford Grammar.

"I never met him but my brother played football with him," he says.

What has kept him in the industry for so long is that the slightly surreal comedian is never averse to trying out new ideas.

One was to just be himself on stage and talk about what pops into his head, but he complained that after a while this became too formulaic so he went back to doing character stuff.

Tickets are £12 (£10 concessions). Call the box office on 020 8369 5454.

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