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My Dog's Got No Nose (tour – Westcliff)

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars
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A clown – a comedian – may be a very different person in private to the one which he projects to the public. Ron Aldridge’s one-man play My Dog’s Got No Nose introduces us to a former furniture salesman turned industrial photographer as he waits to make his début as a stand-up comic. Not surprisingly, he’s brim-full of nerves.

What has led him to this is provided at first in a deliberately rambling discourse, all the time taking the audience into his confidence and ad-libbing frantically to its reactions as he tries out jokes, fusses about his clothes and imitates a whole gallery of past comedians known for their idiosyncratic headgear. Scripted improvisation, in fact. This culminates in the actual performance.

Then we come to the second half. I’m not going to spoil what is revealed about his relationship with his wife Judy, her sister Sarah, his brother-in-law Roger and the sequence of events which lead to his second performance. That wouldn’t be fair, as it’s extremely well handled both by the writer and by Damian Williams in a part which I suspect was specially written for him. Certainly Williams seems born to play it and does so with impeccable timing.

Comedy tonight. Of course. But then – send in the clowns (oh, sorry! they're here).


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