Slapstick Home 2020

Stephen Merchant’s
Laurel & Hardy Classics

25 January 2020
Redgrave Theatre


Upcoming Events

Slapstick Take Over 2020


Seven unique comedy events in just one day at Bristol Old Vic and two cracking comedy outing at The Redgrave Theatre, what were we thinking!?

No time to ponder that, so jump in and join us for a riotous Slapstick Takeover that promises a large helping of classic comedy with a generous side order of nostalgia. And when we say ‘generous’, we mean: comedy mega stars Rob Brydon, Harry Hill and Stephen Merchant along with Barry Cryer, Bill Oddie, Tim Brooke-Taylor, Graeme Garden and Robin Ince. You’re welcome.

Slapstick 2018 events

Featured Events


27jan9:15 PM11:20 PMThe Rocky Horror Picture Show 12A9:15 PM - 11:20 PM Colston Hall

26jan7:30 PM10:30 PMSILENT COMEDY GALA7:30 PM - 10:30 PM Colston Hall

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Recent Events

French & Saunders: Comedy Legends

For one night only, the Aardman Slapstick Awards present a unique opportunity to see comedy legends Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders in conversation.

Celebrating 30 years since the launch of their award-winning TV Series French & Saunders (1987-2007) this is a rare chance to see the pair together on stage as they discuss their legendary careers with presenter, actor & comedian Mel Giedoryc.

Following this, they’ll be presented with the prestigious ‘Aardman Slapstick Comedy Legend Award’; an accolade for their phenomenal achievement as multi-award-winning writer/performers who not only pioneered a new wave of comedy but influenced whole generations of artists that followed.

On hearing they had won the award Dawn joked:

“I just can’t believe we are receiving the Comedy Legend Award from Aardman and Slapstick Festival. Actually, wait a minute … on second thoughts I can, because it’s happening on 22nd June and I’ve already bought a lovely new top s’pecially …”

As well as promising exclusive onscreen extracts of their work, this standout comedy award event will feature more than its fair share of surprises, including messages and special guests.

STOP PRESS: Tickets for this event have now sold out.

The Aardman Slapstick Comedy Legend Award with Dawn French and Jennifer Saunders takes place on Thursday 22nd June 2017 at 7:30 at Colston Hall.

Stand Out Stand Up

Jason Manford
Jack Dee
Susan Calman
Richard Herring
Pippa Evans
Tony Hawks

A big thanks to everyone who came to our once in a lifetime Stand Out Stand Up event. It was the first time that this amazingly unique and starry line up came together to raise funds for Slapstick Festival.

Predictably, every guest on the line up continuously cracked up the audience. Jack Dee's tongue-in-cheek hosting was a winner from the offset, displaying enthusiasm and passion for Slapstick and comedy but still keeping with his trademark grumpiness tone!

Richard Herring's forrero rocher dilemma and Tony Hawk's topical poetry made our stomachs sore with both laughter and hunger. It's okay though - we got distracted pretty quickly with free CDs from Tony!

The delightful Pippa Evans skips to the stage with a self-awareness and mockery of her Radio 4 status that makes her that much more loveable to everyone. In similar vein, our Glaswegian correspondent and Kylie Minogue lookalike, Susan Calman, shares self-deprecating tales and anecdtoes about appearances and fame.

Last but not least, Jason Manford, takes a break from starring in ‘Chitty Chitty Bang Bang’ to take to the stage in Bristol with an energy that can't be mimicked. Laughter and giggles galore, Jason's a clear comedy king and our appreciation for his appearance tonight can't even be measured.

Thank you!

Thanks again to all our hilarious guests for Stand Out Stand Up and a big thanks to all the attendees. You are the reason we can have Slapstick and can keep doing these wonderful events.

Previous Festivals

This is what's made audiences giggle for the previous 12 years.


Slapstick 2015

Slapstick 2014

Slapstick 2013

Slapstick 2012

Slapstick 2011

Slapstick 2010

Slapstick 2009

Slapstick 2008

Slapstick 2007

Slapstick 2006

Slapstick 2005


Slapstick Festival Home

Upcoming Events

Bristol’s Slapstick Festival bring their celebrated annual Silent Comedy Gala to Bath with a screening of Charlie Chaplin's comedy masterpiece The Gold Rush (1925).


Experience the magic of Charlie Chaplin’s comic masterpiece, The Gold Rush (1925), on the big screen with an orchestral performance of Chaplin’s score played live! Hosted by silent comedy admirer, actor, director and writer Simon Callow.*
Accompanied by The Bristol Ensemble and conducted by maestro Guenter A. Buchwald, the evening will also feature two classic short film’s, Chaplin’s The Immigrant (1917) and a comedy from ‘the great stone face’ Buster Keaton, The Goat (1922).
*Work commitments allowing. In the unlikely event that Simon is unable to attend we will offer a suitable replacement. Previous gala hosts have included Rory Bremner, Victoria Wood and Marcus Brigstocke.

Neil Innes RIP

On 30th December 2019, we learnt the sad news that Neil Innes, long-time friend and supporter of the festival, had sadly passed away. Festival Director Chris Daniels made the following statement about Neil:

“We are deeply saddened to learn of Neil’s sudden passing. Neil was more than just a patron and a regular guest at Slapstick Festival, he was a real friend to us. His satirical genius through his songwriting, his eloquent lyrics and wonderful, intelligent observations engaged everyone who met or worked with him. You couldn’t wish for a more generous, good-hearted and warm natured human being.We will sorely miss his presence as one of the great satirical musicians of our time.

“Our hearts go out to Neil’s family.” – Chris Daniels

The music

Slapstick is always proud to present world-class live musical accompaniments for its silent comedy screenings, from solo piano improvisations to full orchestral scores and this year we have an exceptional line up of talent.

At our “Slapstick at the Cathedral” events led by Slapstick’s Musical Director, maestro Günter A. Buchwald we have the unstoppable four-piece ensemble The European Silent Screen Virtuosi (ESSV), in the form of Günter A. Buchwald (violin, piano), Frank Bockius (percussion) and Romano Todesco who return to provide accompaniment for the “Slapstick Divas”, the “Silent Comedy Gala” and “So This Is Paris” screenings during the festival. In addition we are delighted to welcome back pianist and composer Daan van den Hurk and our long-serving pianist John Sweeney as well as ‘I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue’s very own Colin Sell.

Volunteer with slapstick!

We’re always on the lookout for people who can help with the smooth running of the festival and with events we stage during the year.

No experience is needed and there are lots of diverse roles available, all of which provide valuable experience in the film, arts and events industries.

So if you or someone you know might be interested click the button below to drop Jacqui a line.



Rory Bremner: A Life In Satire
St Georges Bristol

Thursday 17 October – 8.30pm £20


Rory Bremner has been poking fun at the political establishment for more than 30 years and today, with Trump, Boris and Brexit, we need him more than ever!

But what about the man behind the impressions? Matthew Sweet (Night Waves, Front Row) invites us to peer behind the mask as he engages Britain’s indisputable master of satire and impersonation in conversation, discussing his fascinating career live on stage.

This is a pre-launch event for the 16th edition of Bristol’s Slapstick Festival in partnership with Festival of Ideas.

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