We'll have hospital audiences in stitches

Published: 28 Sep 2012 11:00

TOP Scottish comedians have been rehearsing in Drumchapel for a side-splitting comedy musical which will embark on a ground breaking tour of hospitals this week.

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Health Scare: The Musical, featuring stand-up comedians Raymond Mearns, Jojo Sutherland, Viv Gee and Steven Dick, takes a hilarious sideways look at health scares in the 21st century and promises to have patients in stitches.

The cast and crew have been put through their paces by director Paul Sneddon at Drumchapel Community Centre where they held a dress rehearsal last week before the tour begins tomorrow (Thursday) at Gartnavel Hospital in Glasgow.

Patsy Morrison, director of the charity Universal Comedy, came up with the idea of the live comedy hospital tour after seeing patients and staff share jokes in hospital.

She also felt there was a real need for something uplifting during difficult and stressful economic times:

She said: "I really want people with long term ill health to have a better chance to improve their quality of life. Hopefully, people will have a laugh and take life less seriously for an hour as well as finding out more about the services Universal Comedy can offer them."

The hour-long show features improvisational comedy, magic, stand-up from recent comedy course participants and culminates in the musical, a 'panto style' look at how health scares in the media affect our behaviour.

Written by Raymond Mearns, star of Rab C Nesbitt, River City, Limmy's Show, and Steven Dick, a comedy writer for BBC TV and radio, the free show will be performed in lecture theatres, day rooms, recreation rooms and canteens in hospitals to reach patients who could benefit from a good laugh.

It will tour 14 NHS hospitals in Glasgow, Forth Valley, Paisley, Lanarkshire, Edinburgh and Livingston until November 15 and is also open to members of the public.

The show hopes to reach a wide ranging audience made up of patients, staff, outpatients, health and social care workers.

After each performance there will be a 15-minute question and answer session where the audience can quiz performers and find out more about the charity's work.

Ms Morris added: "We want to increase participation in the arts by people with ill health raise awareness of comedy workshops and courses for people with long term which can help combat ill health, improve confidence and self-esteem and reduce depression and social isolation."

For full tour dates visit www.universalcomedy.co.uk

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