April 1, 2016 – Things got a little heated at the Glee Club in Nottingham England after comic Roger Monkhouse was about five minutes into a set of what some considered to be controversial material. The comedian was telling jokes about ISIS and Jimmy Saville, the late BBC commentator who was disgraced after hundreds of allegations of sexual abuse. A heckler took issue with jokes being made about the recent terror attacks in Belgium — the heckling then lead to a physical fight among some 30 members of the audience.
According to the Mirror UK, the comedy club denied the allegations, and instead said the confrontation was between a couple of guests who had been arguing among themselves. Manager of the Glee Club, Bradley Seagrave said the fight happened after the show had ended and was finished in ‘seconds’ – contrary to witness reports which claim the scuffle lasted around 10 minutes. Seagrave added:
“Our audiences are largely a switched-on educated lot who come to us for more than dated jokes. We’ve never had a fight here before so it made for a rather disappointing end to a brilliant night with a lovely crowd. Some of the material our comics talk about will always be contentious and we encourage that. This is live stand-up not tempered TV comedy so I’m afraid it’s not all ‘garlic bread’. That’s the job of good comedy. To make you laugh, make you think and serve as a reflection and social commentary of our times. Mocking ISIS and Jimmy Savile are almost compulsory in comedy now and we make no apology for being cutting edge and contemporary.”
Fellow comic Pat Dixon added on Twitter:
“Mocking ISIS [is] almost compulsory in comedy now and we make no apology for being cutting edge and contemporary.” https://t.co/E3IdPB9uzV