Happy Christmas Ipswich 3

by | Dec 9, 2022 | Featured, Reviews

Happy Christmas Ipswich 3

The third instalment of the big charity event hosted by Griff Rhys Jones raising money for East Anglia’s Children’s Hospices was held at The Regent Theatre to a full, excited house.

Kicking off Happy Christmas Ipswich was a film showing Griff dressed-up as Santa going through the streets of Ipswich on a steam engine and climbing the roof of the Regent to drop through the chimney and onto the stage.  Griff’s constant laughter while telling us anecdotes and jokes between acts was great, it was though he was chatting amongst friends as the atmosphere was relaxed.

Both music and comedy were the main themes of the show and the first musical number was Rory McGrath and his band The Grateful Living playing a few rib-tickling comedy songs in a country style, with tracks such as ‘Part with Your Cash’, ‘Get Me to the Jungle’. The band included Phillip Pope on the acoustic guitar, Sean Lyons on guitar, Kevin Powell on bass and Dirk Maggs on drums – proper old school talented musicians.

Richard Herring was up next hilariously talking b*ll*cks –  he’s recovered from prostate cancer, therefore I’m not being rude he really was chatting all things meat and two veg!

Griff then introduced Adam Buxton who cleverly read from his journal of being married and arguing with the wife which included whether the cutlery draw was racist. He’s created a database of arguments and how they were resolved so he knows how to deal with them the next time that subject comes up. He also gave us a song about tea towels, which had us all laughing hysterically.

The brilliant Andy Hamilton came on stage next and made us laugh with anecdotes of recognising people out of context, particularly with Greggs staff. Jon Culshaw popped along and did impressions of the audience suggestions, he also was able to hang about and get involved in the prize draw and made this task funny. A few political digs got in there as he did Boris Johnson and his Steven Gerrard’s take on life of mars was a rib tickler.

We had the company of John Lloyd, long time TV and radio producer who brought some sensibility to the proceedings and urging us to spend a bit more money on raffle tickets in the interval. He also gave us a few snippets from his book, where he’s given a town name to ‘things that don’t have a name’. For example, the imprint you get on the back of the thighs after sitting on a wicker chair – is called a Kettering. There were many town names being used in this humorous way.

The Galaxy Big Band were on stage after the interval with the incredible Janie Dee bringing some 1940s swing jazzy glitz to the show, with her amazing voice and who doesn’t like the brassy sounds of a big band? More music in the night was from Pop Chorus and they all had huge smiles on their faces, and there were snippets of dancing from students at The Emma Dodd School of Performing Arts.

Deborah Frances-White (The Guilty Feminist) was cleverly and masterfully ad-libbing her way with audience participation and ended up auctioning a man’s jumper with a dinner at the Salt House for £200. Another comedienne, Tiff Stevenson, came on stage with her thought provoking female humour, which didn’t quite hit the mark for everyone but there were relatable jokes particularly the passive aggressive mothers. We also had a stint from Milton Jones who was too funny – constant quick firing one-liners which were belly achingly funny.

The wonderful Bill Bailey was on the billing, a comedy genius and talented musician who whizzed through his set to squeeze as much into it as possible and we didn’t stop laughing. His Victorian Love Island idea, run in with Chris Martin, Googling reviews of Poundlands, and letting his thoughts ramble out loud – he’s charmingly bonkers and side-splittingly hilarious.

We are very lucky Griff has been in the business for many years for him to cajole his friends and colleagues to perform at this event to make it quite the spectacular – where else would we get so many fantastic performances on stage on the same night?

Another hugely fantastic show with Happy Christmas Ipswich 3 raising over £104,000 for EACH on the night – absolutely wonderful result.

If you want to donate to EACH you can text EACH to 70470 to donate £10 or for more information about the charity : https://www.each.org.uk

Links to events at Ipswich Regent


  • Hayley Clapperton

    Hayley is a business co-owner working too many hours so it's a good job she's passionate about it. Hayley's down time is music, music and music of all types and she enjoys going to gigs, listening to new bands and breathing in the energy it creates.

    View all posts