Wednesday 24th April
Comedy and Anarchic Entertainment. To be hosted by radical comic Scott Capurro.
APRIL LINEUP FEATURING: Stephen Fry with Keith Allen, Scott Capurro, the Reverend, Dickie Beau, James Pearson Trio, and Terry Alderton. More TBA
Founded by Peter Cook in 1961, “The Establishment” was the Soho club from which the satire boom was launched. Featuring uncensored, live, stand-up comedy, it gave a platform to radical, political, and anarchic performers (everyone from Lenny Bruce to Barry Humphries and even Frankie Howerd), and was the inspiration for “That Was the Week That Was” (first broadcast in 1962), and Beyond The Fringe which ran for 18 months on Broadway.
Fifty years on, comedy performers no longer have to fear censorship from the Lord Chamberlain, yet judging from the bland state of comedy on television today, although he may be gone, his malign spirit lives on. So what better time to relaunch the club that first challenged the tedium of the status quo?
The relaunch of The Establishment stems from a conversation between Lin Cook (Peter’s widow) and satirist Victor Lewis-Smith, during which Lin revealed that, during the last year of his life, Peter had been planning to re-open the club. “Peter wanted to revive the club, so if it was reopened in Soho that will be realising Peter’s dream before his death…It would have been Peter’s 75th birthday this year, how amazing is that?” - Lin Cook
With Lin’s blessing for the project, Victor has teamed up with Keith Allen and Mike O’Brien (Laughing Stock Productions), to fulfil Peter’s wish, initially through a monthly series of “pop up” nights at Ronnie Scott’s. Jazz was always an important part of the entertainment at the original Establishment (Dudley Moore’s Quartet were regular performers there), so Ronnie’s is a natural venue for the relaunch. In 2013, the team plans to open a permanent home for The Establishment in the heart of Soho.
The doors of The Establishment will be thrown open to performers who have a genuine dedication to the art of unrestricted, uncensored performances. As with the original Establishment, performers will be many and varied from young (or not so young) unknowns to household names (but as you’ve never seen them before).
Shows begin at 11.30pm, on Wednesday 23rd January 2012.The Establishment Live at Ronnie Scott’s is a Late Late Show Special. Ticket Prices: £20, Doors: 10:45pm