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Big Belfast welcome for Bridges at the SSE Arena

30th September 2015

One Direction, drugs, depression, the dole…..no, not another tabloid headline but just a few of the topics touched upon by Kevin Bridges in his latest stand-up tour.

The 28-year-old Clydebank comic takes the most standard of subjects and offers up his own witty observations in a quick-fire, side-splitting, self-assured show.

He barely pauses to take a breath as he fires out one hilarious anecdote after another with the confidence and swagger of an entertainer twice his age, never once losing the pace – or the audience.

Bridges is clearly delighted to be back in Belfast for the first of a four night stint at the SSE Arena (Monday and Tuesday this week, two further shows in November).

"I’m doing four shows in Belfast, One Direction can only manage three,” he says, with justified smugness.

From frustrating round-the-world telephone calls to sort out a problem with a PC (we’ve all been there) to the perils of moving to a posh part of Glasgow, where dogs are named Diego Rivera after a Mexican painter and kids called Sebastian ‘carry cellos on their back’, Bridges’ everyday stories are hilariously relatable.

His recollection of childhood sleepovers and his mate ‘House Rice’ Stu is a show highlight, as he describes his horror at discovering that his friend’s domestic set-up is somewhat different to that of his own family. Lying in bed, desperate to get back to the comfort of his home, he ponders if 5am is too early to make his escape.

Even when he jokes about serious subjects, his material steers clear from being offensive. His quip about mental health ‘In Spain, if you take a wee nap in the afternoon, it’s called a siesta, here it’s called depression’ is laugh-out-loud funny, without being insulting or too close to the bone.

He saves the subject of religion for his encore, because, as he asks, what else would you opt for in Belfast? His description of Jesus returning to Earth in this celebrity-obsessed age and trying to get into a nightclub rounds off a first-class performance. Jesus to bouncer ‘Do you know who my dad is?’, bouncer to Jesus ‘I don’t care, you’re still not getting in wearing those sandals.’

Bridge’s comedy may be mainstream and rather tame compared to the likes of Frankie Boyle. But the fact he’s sold out four shows at the SSE Arena in Belfast is testament to his popularity.

Maybe it’s the fact he’s from Glasgow, a city similar to Belfast and whose people share common temperaments, that makes Bridges such a huge hit here.

Or maybe it’s just the fact that he’s one very funny man.

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