And with Valentine’s Day fast approaching, there are a number of chances to have a giggle with your loved one over the next few days.
Two-time Guide Award winning stand-up James Alderson is going to be playing Cupid as he hosts four special Valentine’s shows.
First up are two nights at The Spinnaker Comedy club, held at the foot of the tower on Friday and Saturday with Laura Smyth, Joey Page and Rob Deering. Tickets also include a ride up the landmark.
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Then there’s the Secret Comedy Club at The Coastguard Studio in Southsea on Sunday, and finally the big day – Monday – at The Spring Arts Centre in Havant with Hal Cruttenden, Cally Beaton and Nina Gilligan.
James says: ‘Usually we just do a couple at The Spinnaker, but this time I thought not everyone's going to want go out on the Monday because it's a work night, so they're probably going to want to celebrate and do something a bit special on the Friday or Saturday, and maybe just have a quiet one in on Monday.
‘But then some people will want to go out on Monday night...
‘So we're doing the big two Friday and Saturday, and then Monday itself at the lovely Spring Arts Centre. On Sunday it’s the Secret Comedy Club where we're not announcing any of the acts, because it's nice to keep an air of mystery. But we always get someone well-known, and this time we’ve got a really great name.
‘It's like a little underground ’90s comedy venue at The Coastguard Studio, when you'd find a gig that was all dark and cool and jazz-vibey. They weren't bespoke comedy clubs, they were little cellars and stuff, and it feels like that.
‘When I saw it I thought it was really nice, a great setting for up close and personal comedy. We do the big gigs, the Spinnaker, The Spring is different again, but in that space it feels old school – you can really see the whites of the comedian's eyes.
‘You can't not feel the atmosphere when you're all in somewhere like that.’
What with James being so busy over this most romantic time of year, how does he celebrate with his wife?
‘I enjoy everybody else's relationships!’
‘I've been married over 20 years, I just like to be reminded what it was like,’ he chuckles. ‘No, my wife loves me more when I'm not about...
‘To be honest, she'll probably come to the Monday show. Because I'm hosting these, I'm on for 10 minutes and then I'll probably come off stage and sit down with the audience, and we can enjoy it together.
‘The Sunday, Monday ones, they won't finish late, they'll be done by 10.15. We'll go home, probably get a drive-through and go and sit and watch a recording of The Chase of something. Just real romance, you know?
‘I don't want to make anyone jealous, but James and his wife have still got the magic going. Drive-through KFC and a bit of Bradley Walsh, bed by 11.’
James recently put his popular Bring Back The ‘80s! show to bed after a successful run at Edinburgh Fringe and numerous shows around the south.
However, this is not the end of James’ love affair with the decade.
‘It was sad to finish it, but I am busy writing volume two, and I think I'll probably do a Christmas special in December of it where it's just about the ’80s Christmas – it was a whole world apart from what kids have these days.
For tickets to The Spinnaker Comedy Club on Friday or Saturday, go to comedyatthetower.com.
For Southsea’s Secret Comedy Club on Sunday, go to wegottickets.com/secretsouthsea.
And for Valentine’s Day at The Spring Arts Centre, go to thespring.co.uk.
A message from the Editor, Mark Waldron
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