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Richard Herring – What is Love Anyway? – Nottingham playhouse

[pullquote]If finding humour in the most difficult of situations is the sign of a good comedian, then Herring is a master.[/pullquote]

Entering the theatre to the opening chords of Pulp‘s Something Changed it is easy to be transported back to the mid 90s to Derby Assembly Rooms where a much younger me watched the wittiest and arguably funniest duo that was on the circuit. Herring himself alludes to those times on occasion during his set and prior to the performance I cant help but wonder if wanting one half of the duo to be equally amusing is a little bit like, well, wanting the moon on a stick.

Herring, however, does not disappoint. Asking the audience What is Love Anyway? It is clear that the answer is hilarious. Whether he is explaining how hero worshipping an actress is somehow better than the actual reality of dating her, particularly if you have previously been foolish enough to commit to videotape details of your crazed obsession, or musing upon the correct content for an endearing Valentine’s card, Herring is constantly on top form.

My favourite part of the set is when Herring reads a poem reported to be written by his younger self with regard to a boy he despises, with a huge element of envy; he likes to play the field. This part of the set sparkles with adolescent angst as the audience laughs along at the folly of youth. The young Richard Herring would no doubt be proud, and a little envious, of his future self.

After a brief interval, perfect to partake in a weak lemon drink, Herring returns to the stage to protest some more at the fiction that we call love. It quickly becomes clear that however much Herring tries to persuade us that love does not exist, here at Lyric Lounge Review, we lur-rrrr-rr-rve him.

Explaining the perils of romantic gestures, Herring explains why we all ought to buy shares in Ferrero Rocher and the company’s part in his own impending downfall. After a brief detour into the self- satisfied world of parental love, Herring then explores the dark despair of the death of a loved one. If finding humour in the most difficult of situations is the sign of a good comedian, then Herring is a master. He evidently also undermines his own premise and has to admit that perhaps after all, love does exist. In doing so, he has taken us on a roller-coaster ride of intelligent observations, radical rants and heart-warming humour. I feel like I have my moon on a stick and more. So if you can’t find love this year why not go and laugh about it with Herring on tour in the UK this year.

You can find more tour details HERE.

Tanya Russell

Editor of LLR since 2005

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