Laurence Clark (comedian)
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Laurence Clark Comedian

Laurence Clark is a British stand-up comedian, writer, actor, presenter, and disability rights campaigner. Laurence was born with cerebral palsy and uses his line of work to alter the general public's perceptions of disabled people.[1]

Stand-up comedy

Laurence Clark topped Shortlist magazine's poll of Britain's Ten Funniest New Comedians in 2009.[]

At the Labour Party conference in 2005, Clark was called a 'sit-down comedian' by the then-Prime Minister's wife Cherie Blair, referring to him being a wheelchair user. Clark shrugged off the press attention, saying she was just cracking a "crap joke".[2]

Clark gave his first live stand-up show, The All-Star Charity Show, at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in 2003. It was described by The Scotsman critic, Kate Copstick, as a "powerful comedy voice" and "stunningly hard-hitting".[3] and was a Critics' Choice in The Times.[] Clark's next show, The Jim Davidson Guide to Equality, was based upon comparisons between Jim Davidson's stand-up and Tony Blair's manifesto speeches.[4] A teenage experience of appearing on Jim'll Fix It with Jimmy Savile[] provided the basis for Jim Fixed It for Me, performed at the 2006 Edinburgh Festival.[5] Clark's show at the 2007 Edinburgh Festival, 12% Evil, used video clips and Powerpoint slides to ridicule common clichés and stereotypes about disabled people.[6]Spastic Fantastic (2008), charted Clark's mission, as someone who has cerebral palsy, to rescue the word 'spastic' through various means, including the use of secret cameras.[7]Health Hazard (2011), focused on the dangers of privatising the British National Health Service.[8] He won a commission from the London 2012 Cultural Olympiad to produce a new show in that year.[9]

Clark also occasionally performs as part of the comedy group "Abnormally Funny People", with Steve Best, Liz Carr, Tanyalee Davis, Chris McCausland, Steve Day and Simon Minty.[10]

Television

Clark has appeared on "Are You Having A Laugh? TV and Disability" (BBC2);[11]The Heaven and Earth Show (BBC 1); Embarrassing Bodies (Channel 4); The London Programme (ITV); The Shooting Party (Channel 4) and I'm With Stupid (BBC 3).[12] In October 2004 he was a reporter on Newsnight (BBC 2), presenting a short film about disability and the UK Abortion Act.[13] Clark and his family are the subject of a documentary film as part of BBC 1's Beyond Disability season called 'We Won't Drop the Baby' to be screened on 25 March 2012 on BBC 1,[14][15] narrated by David Tennant.[16]

Stage

On stage Clark has acted with Graeae Theatre Company, playing Richard in their forum theatre play The Trouble with Richard.[17] He also appeared in David Thacker's A Midsummer Night's Dream at Bolton's Octagon Theatre, about which the Guardian said "his wheelchair-assisted Wall is indeed 'the wittiest partition that I ever heard discourse.'"[18]

Personal life

Laurence Clark lives in Liverpool[19] with his wife and two children.[20]

References

  1. ^ "Independent Blogs - Laurence Clark". The Independent. London. Retrieved 2011. 
  2. ^ "Cherie cracks 'crap joke' for disabled comic". The Scotsman. 28 September 2005. Retrieved 2014. 
  3. ^ "Four hot weeks in August". The Scotsman. 30 August 2003. Retrieved 2011. 
  4. ^ "Interview". Disability Arts Online. Retrieved 2011. 
  5. ^ "Review: Jim Fixed it for Me". The Scotsman. 14 August 2006. Retrieved 2011. 
  6. ^ Adams-Spink, Geoff (2 August 2007). "Disabled comedian debunks stereotypes". BBC News. Retrieved 2011. 
  7. ^ "Comedy Review: Laurence Clark - Spastic Fantastic!". The Scotsman. 19 August 2008. Retrieved 2011. 
  8. ^ "Comedian Laurence Clark sounds a warning bell for the NHS". Scotsman. 28 July 2011. Retrieved 2011. 
  9. ^ "Olympic Diary: 50 weeks to go!". Westmorland Gazette. 11 August 2011. Retrieved 2011. 
  10. ^ "Abnormally Funny People". Daily Info Oxford. 16 November 2011. Retrieved 2011. 
  11. ^ "Review: Are You Having a Laugh?". Disability Arts Online. 2 July 2010. Retrieved 2011. 
  12. ^ "Disabled Actors Directory" (PDF). BBC. Retrieved 2011. 
  13. ^ "Newsnight". 27 October 2004. BBC. Retrieved 2011. 
  14. ^ "Abnormally Funny People". Daily Info Oxford. 16 November 2011. Retrieved 2011. 
  15. ^ "Comedian Laurence Clark sounds a warning bell for the NHS". Scotsman. 28 July 2011. Retrieved 2011. 
  16. ^ "Too Disabled for kids?". Chortle. Retrieved 2011. 
  17. ^ "Disabled Actors Directory" (PDF). BBC. Retrieved 2011. 
  18. ^ Hickling, Alfred (23 February 2010). "Review of A Midsummer Night's Dream". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 2011. 
  19. ^ "The Leaving of Liverpool". BBC Ouch. Retrieved 2011. 
  20. ^ "Comedian Laurence Clark sounds a warning bell for the NHS". Scotsman. 28 July 2011. Retrieved 2011. 

External links


  This article uses material from the Wikipedia page available here. It is released under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share-Alike License 3.0.


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