Stand Up Man: Laughs on dark side of funny
Stand-up comedy has been the subject of several productions in recent years.
Into this less than inspiring fray comes Northern Ireland's C21 Theatre Company with Stand Up Man, running until February 8 at the Baby Grand.
Sold on local favourite Tim McGarry's presence, it actually features US-born Ulster stage stalwart Nick Hardin in the lead role of Thaddeus McGuinn, an altar boy-turned-club comic who sees himself as one of the greats.
Meanwhile, his alter ego-cum-conscience, Father Thad (McGarry), knows he's just "a sad, little man in a polyester suit".
Written by New Yorker Derek Murphy and directed by talented Belfast man Stephen Beggs, it's gruelling, often depressing stuff – surely not what McGarry fans expect – tipping over into out-and-out nihilism at certain points.
It's more tragic than comic, and is compelling enough with it.