Ivor Dembina: Free Jewish Comedy

Article by Renée Rowland | 10 Aug 2011
  • Ivor Dembina @ The City Cafe

Walking into Ivor Dembina’s Free Jewish Comedy show in The Counting House is like walking into a discombobulated synagogue: in one corner, below a large Koppaberg banner, a mystical man plays a haunting song on a clarinet; in another corner a large fan blows and splutters glittering streamers in an attempt to displace the stagnant air; in front of the stage, second row back sits a line of apprehensive Jewish faces which only soften when Dembina walks on stage.

Though not endearing, there is something else about Dembina that draws you in. So much so that when local bar staff deem it fit to walk across Dembina’s stage in 'urgent' business, the protective audience heckle the barmen before silencing themselves and focussing back on Dembina. Testament to his well-mannered and experienced self, Dembina isn’t phased and with genuine comic genius twists the moment into his ending material.

Dembina is traditional, textbook stand-up comic who found success exploiting something close to his heart, a subject which just happens to be laced with persecution, oppression, conflict and misunderstanding. Though it’s ok if you don’t, you should think before you laugh.

Ivor Dembina: Free Jewish Comedy, Laughing Horse@The Counting House 3-29 August

http://www.freefestival.co.uk