Paul Merton - Out of My Head
This show has now closed, click here for a listing of current and future London shows
Previewed 1 October 2012, opened 2 October 2012, closed 20 October 2012 at the Vaudeville Theatre in London
Following a major UK tour, the hugely popular stand-up comedian Paul Merton returns to London's West End with his new show Out of My Mind which also features Lee Simpson, Richard Vranch and Suki Webster.
Out of My Mind delves into Paul Merton's mind and his feelings about being admitted for six weeks as a psychiatric patient in London's Maudsley Mental Hospital in 1990 in a sequence of improvised comedy, sketches and stand-up.
"Paul Merton has brought the unexpected to Have I Got News For You for over two decades now. While Ian Hislop can be relied on to launch a scathing attack on the politician usually sitting next to him, Merton will reduce his own neighbour to fits of giggles by embarking on wild tangents about, say, badgers. So it's unsurprising that a journey through the comic's mind features subjects as diverse as stern nuns to flying rabbits. This journey is the premise of his nationwide tour, Out Of My Head, which sees Merton making a return to stand up after an absence of more than 12 years (well, sort of, he is accompanied by friends, Lee Simpson, Richard Vranch and his wife Suki Webster)... Some of these fantastical detours work brilliantly, like the rabbit puppets flying to the Dambusters theme and the musical interludes featuring Vranch, the quick-witted pianist from Whose Line Is It Anyway. Other sketches drag on and often seem contrived, having been thrown in as a way of showing off the talents of the four players." The Manchester Evening News
This is the first time he has done standup in the 21st century, says Paul Merton . But standup forms only a small part of Out of My Head, an autobiographical revue about Merton's overactive imagination and brush with insanity. His mental health isn't the only thing unstable about a show that uneasily unites standup with sketch, impro and song. Performed with Merton's Comedy Store Players cohorts Lee Simpson, Richard Vranch and Suki Webster, it has uncertain patches but also moments when its curious form is just the thing to evoke Merton's overcrowded mind." The Guardian
"Paul Merton, the wonderfully funny star of Have I Got News For You, brought his unique humour to Weston, assisted by Richard Vranch, Suki Webster and Lee Simpson. The show was billed as an attempt to see what goes on inside his head; to explore his 'noggin'. Taking us through Paul's early childhood, into his teens, early 20s and onwards until he found himself in a psychiatric hospital, the show was littered with laughs, funny stories and good humour. A mixture of stand-up and sketches with a bit of music thrown in, this should have been a rioutous evening of belly laughs but unfortunately it didn't quite work. A couple of the sketches fell a bit flat... That being said, many of the other sketches were very funny and you couldn't help warming to the man and willing him to entertain - and in general, he did just that... Paul was at his best when he was thinking on his feet, exchanging banter and ad-libbing." Bristol Evening News
On television Paul Merton has featured in a range of programmes including the improvised comedy show Whose Line Is It Anyway?, Paul Merton: Series One and Two, the topical comedy quiz show Have I Got News for You, two series of Paul Merton in Galton and Simpson. In addition he has presented four travel documentry series for Channel 5 - Paul Merton in China, Paul Merton In India, Paul Merton in Europe and Paul Merton's Adventures - as well as Paul Merton's Birth of Hollywood and hosting Room 101.
Out of My Mind with Paul Merton in London at the Vaudeville Theatre previewed from 1 October 2012, opened on 2 October 2012 and closed on 20 October 2012.