Boothby Graffoe

Norwich Playhouse

It is hard to put a name to Boothby Graffoe's classy comedy style.

There are gags, but he's not a gags man. There is absurdity, but he's not really absurd.

I know what this is: it's that little-practised art beloved of the English gentleman: humour. An art form which takes charm and some old-fashioned wit. Both of which Graffoe has in spades.

The material is eclectic. Part one embraced everything from irradiated super sheep on Scottish hillsides to Norfolk taxi drivers whipping along their Vauxhall Astras as if there were real horses under the bonnet.


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It also featured Graffoe's classic romantic song: 'Bunji Girl, she comes and goes.'

Part two was more contemplative in mood – including every amateur sailor's nightmare ditty: 'Does anyone know how to sail this boat?' and the true tale of the middle-class man stalked by a knife-wielding lunatic who stunned his adversary with the line: “Iterribly sorry, I think I'm going to have to run away...”

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It may sound disparate, and no one could say it was really ground breaking, but this quiet comedian, who is featured in shows like Radio 4's 'No Particular Order' left me with the sense I had been taken somewhere new, and looked at life from a different angle. And that's what it's all about, isn't it?

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