Stokey stand-up fronts seventh annual comedy gig
- Credit: Archant
We talk to comedian, runner and all-round-good-guy Rob Deering about the return of Shake With Laughter
Through a combination of running marathons and hosting comedy events, Rob Deering has raised in excess of £100,000 for Parkinson’s UK in recent years.
The stand-up comic – who hails from Stoke Newington – is about to host his annual Shake With Laughter event, where a line-up of very funny people will gather to tell jokes and raise vital funds for a cause close to his heart.
“My dad has Parkinson’s, and when he was first diagnosed he used to volunteer for Parkinson’s UK,” he says.
“When I signed up for my first marathon, I offered to fundraise for them. They said ‘I tell you what else you could put together for us Rob, since you’re a stand-up…’ and an annual comedy night was born.”
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It’s an annual comedy night with considerable pedigree, too. This month’s line-up of Greg Davies, Paul Mayhew-Archer, Angela Barnes and Jarred Christmas follow the likes of Jo Brand and Jason Manford in performing, and Deering is thrilled to see Shake With Laughter doing so well.
“Three things make it a particularly special show each year,” he continues.
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“We make sure it’s a cracking comedy night – we don’t want to lean on audience goodwill and it feels like a genuine awareness-raiser, not just a fundraiser.
“We have an audience blend of comedy fans, people living with Parkinson’s, and everyone in between having fun together. And finally, at the wonderful Comedy Store it feels like home.”
Deering has taken his unique brand of charm and guitar-infused comedy out on an autumn tour, with 28 headline shows locked in to his schedule between now and Christmas. This sounds busy enough, and that’s before you even factor in his love of running.
“I’m doing the Yorkshire Marathon the day before Shake With Laughter – that will be my 11th marathon.
“It seems like they’re getting harder – which could well be age – but I think when each one is done I immediately forget the hardship and remember it through rose-tinted glasses, so the problem could just be… perspective.”
If, like Deering, you’re a lover of both comedy and running, you’ll want to know all about his Running Commentary podcast.
“It’s a real treat. My fellow comedian and runner-brother Paul Tonkinson and I could chat – and run – all day. Building a community of virtual running buddies around that is one of those ‘jobs’ that simply isn’t work at all.”
Shake with Laughter is at The Comedy Store on Monday October 15. For more details and tickets, click here.