‘Fresh Laughs’ with Shortt and the Rubberbandits

Alan Owens

Reporter:

Alan Owens

SOME of the country’s top comedians are to band together for a night to raise funds for the Fresh Film Festival based in Limerick.

SOME of the country’s top comedians are to band together for a night to raise funds for the Fresh Film Festival based in Limerick.

Fresh Laughs is being organised by comedian Pat Shortt, a board member of Fresh, which has been supporting young film-makers in Ireland over the past fifteen years from its base in the city.

The gig in the Belltable this Wednesday will feature a top comic line-up of Après Match star Barry Murphy, The Rubberbandits, The Hairy Bowsies and Limerick’s own Choke Comedy Improv troupe.

“It is a great line-up,” said Pat. “We are trying to raise funds to keep Fresh going, so this year we decided to have a good night of comedy to try and raise a few a bob. We really have the cream of Irish comedy there - if I say so myself!”

The Mattie star, who lives in Castleconnell, said that getting such a line-up of top comedians in one place was “unusual”.

“Barry is really busy shooting a new series for RTÉ and it is rare you can get a guy like him to do something like this,” he explained.

“The Hairy Bowsies - Joe Rooney and Paul Woodfull - have just reformed, they were huge a few years back, they are a hilarious double act. I am really excited about seeing them.

“And we have the Rubberbandits, two local guys who are all over the place and doing really well in the UK recently. We are delighted to have them lending their support as well.

“We also have Choke, the local comedy group, and it is great to have them on stage with the other comedians.

“I’ll be performing myself as well, so it is a huge line-up and we hope people come along and enjoy it, and have a great night out. In doing so, they will help raise a few bob for Fresh, which is a very important festival.”

Fresh, although an Irish festival, is based in Limerick. While funded by the Arts Council, it always needs more funds in order to help develop its programme of activities for young film-makers, Pat explained.

A number of former Fresh winners have gone on to carve out successful careers in film and television.

“It is not for profit and the first raft of prize winners that won about ten years ago like Conor McMahon, who has Stitches in the cinema at the moment, are the future breed of Irish filmmakers and Fresh Film saw their talent and helped them on their future path,” explained Pat.

Fresh Laughs takes place this Wednesday, November 14 at 8pm in the Belltable. Tickets are available at 061-319866 or www.belltable.ie.