Jack Barry: You Don't Know Jack

Jack Barry has the potential to be an electric comic. His show, You Don’t Know Jack discusses identity and his quarter life crisis, but while it is meant to be a cacophony of thoughts that he attempts to resolve, the hour just becomes muddled.

If Jack can learn to have faith in his own ability and introduce some light and shade into his routine, he’s onto a winner.

This is not to say that Jack doesn’t have good material — he makes some thoughtful observations. Commenting on how babies and toddlers are always issuing death warrants is wonderfully conveyed as is his admission that a loving family has left him with no angst or ammunition to use in furthering his plight as a comedian. Self-deprecating storytelling also works for Jack and revealing how he was dumped by his ex-girlfriend was also highly amusing.

Jack, however needs to work on two main areas — faith and flow. Talking about his quarter-life crisis (a topic that is in danger of becoming hack) is not the most interesting thing about Jack’s life. He has some real stories to tell, such as living in China for three years and speaking Mandarin. This is an area he should’ve developed more in the show, telling more colourful tales from his time in the Far East. Secondly, alternating the tone, pace and volume will stop the show from appearing 2D. He rarely shifted the tone, which inevitably works against his goal of holding onto an audience’s short attention span. Perhaps if he could work on his crowd interaction with sharper, wittier comebacks he may fare better in future shows. Jack also mentioned that his room at The Mash House was unsuitable for comedy — he’s just lucky there wasn’t a bar with rowdy punters in the back who would’ve inevitably made it an even more difficult hour.

Overall if Jack can learn to have faith in his own ability and introduce some light and shade into his routine, he’s onto a winner.

Reviews by Sophia Charalambous

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Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
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Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
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Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
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Performances

Location

The Blurb

Who the f*ck is Jack Barry? Come and watch him figure it out in this show about identity and quarter-life crises. 'An inventive flourish behind his likeable banter… distinctive wit... one to watch' (Chortle.co.uk). 'Instantly likeable' (ThreeWeeks). 'A chipper, friendly and optimistic performer with a strong debut hour of stand-up and enormous potential' (BroadwayBaby.com). 'Barry is so laid-back he's almost horizontal' (List). 'The hardest I have laughed at the Fringe' (EdFringeReview.com). 'A pleasing, assured presence... a degree of skill that belies his youth' (Fest). Tour support for Joe Lycett, Patrick Kielty and James Acaster.

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