The Leeds Tealights: The Ultimate Indoor Experience

At 5pm, four young men take on a daily mission of fitting a record number of sketches into one hour of comedy. The Leeds Tealights exude an undeniable energy as they jump from scene to scene, exploring every comedic device at their disposal. Starting the show, the Tealights act out a Q&A with their own cast, imagining themselves as celebrity versions of themselves, intermittently breaking the fourth wall with their audience to comic effect. Though there is undeniable talent within the ranks, one can’t help but be reminded of a similar trope within The Mitchell and Webb Look. The only other recurring scene was a BBC Think Tank sketch, where a young executive pitches controversial titles for new programming to his despairing boss. This scene is the Tealights only real stab at tackling a current issue, though there is no suggestion of affiliation.

There are many funny scenes that keep the audience laughing along and some that make the entire venue wince in their seats. Barnaby Callabys ‘Little John’ scene where a conjoined twin gets his brother to tenderly tongue the sock puppet that protrudes from his shirt is reminiscent of another Leeds-borne sketch troupe, The League of Gentleman. Another favourite scene centres around a hopeless and aggressive motivational speaker who delivers a talk on what he calls the 3 Ps: ‘Perseverance, Persistence and Pacific’. The bellicose brute gives his message of success in a dictatorial style, soon realising that his thoughts make very little sense. The motivational speaker scene, though funny represents a consistent issue within the show that many sketches don’t tend to have definitive endings or punch lines, but just seem to fizzle out - albeit into fast, well-rehearsed scene changes.

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.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

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.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

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 £1.7m to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
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Performances

The Blurb

Current holders of the Best Student Sketch Group (NationalStudent.com), the Leeds Tealights are back! Directed by Patrick Turpin, the Tealights return with infectious energy and a glorious spread of sketch comedy.

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