I'm sorry I haven't a clue
Posted: 10 Jan 2015
Sunderland Empire Theatre
The Empire Theatre played host to the stage show of the long-running Radio 4 ‘antidote to panel games.’
Sandi Toksvig replaced Jack Dee in the chair but otherwise the regulars were there: the evergreen Barry Cryer, Tim Brooke-Taylor, Grahame Garden and Jeremy Hardy as well as pianist Colin Sell – albeit there were plenty of the usual double-entendre-laden excuses for the absence of Samantha or Sven.
Devotees of ‘I’m Sorry’ packed the theatre, and I couldn’t see an empty seat from where I was.
As usual the show began with a historical slaughtering of the host city: “Sunderland is Britain’s equivalent to Rio de Janeiro,” Toksvig confidently proclaimed, before adding after a suitable pause: “It doesn’t have a huge statue overlooking the city but people still arrive, take one look and gasp, ‘Jesus Christ!’”
The jokes are as old as the programme, but are still crackers – again like the programme. The edginess is a little more risqué when freed from the shackles of BBC radio etiquette but the rounds are the same.
These include singing the words of one song to the tune of another – so you get Tim Brooke-Taylor performing The Smiths’ ‘Girlfriend in a Coma’ to the tune of ‘Tip-toe through the Tulips’ – magnificently and hilariously.
If you’ve never heard ‘I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue’ listen out for it on Sunday lunchtimes on Radio 4.
If you do know the programme I assure you the stage show was well worth a trip too.