Quirky comedian is first big name booked for arts festival

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Perrier Award-winning comedian Daniel Kitson is the first headline act announced for the Hebden Bridge Arts Festival which kicks off in June.

The quirky funnyman is bringing his brand new show ‘After the Beginning. Before the End’ to Hebden Bridge Picture House on Wednesday, June 26.

In typically eccentric style, he proclaims the idea just came to him as he was driving across London after dropping his dad off at the station. Daniel is currently writing the show in his bedroom and says the kid next door to his home is disturbing him by playing the James Bond theme on his trumpet.

Artistic director Helen Meller said: “Daniel Kitson is a dream first booking for the festival - idiosyncratic, hilarious, a stand-out stand up.

“Stewart Lee, who sold out the Picture House last year, is a huge fan and has said: ‘He makes you feel bad because he’s doing what you ought to be doing, and doing it brilliantly’.

“We expect this to sell out very quickly which is why we are making tickets available online, but with a guaranteed number for local people.”

Daniel grew up in Denby Dale and has earned a reputation as a comic who won’t do TV or sit on mindless panel shows parroting tired gags, preferring to venture out on rare tours with one-off shows that have always won critical acclaim.

He did have a recurring role in Channel 4 comedy series Phoenix Nights, but even that tentative dip into TV resulted in a spectacular falling out with writer and creator Peter Kay.

Since then he has created his own approach to comedy, forging a unique style focusing on the ordinary and making it extraordinary - like 66a Church Street, which is about that house from the moment he was shown round until he was forced out.

Daniel is busy putting the finishing touches to ‘After the Beginning. Before the End’, but as the New York Times said of his hit show ‘It’s Always Right Now, Unitl It’s Later’ he will ‘season the treacle with grit’ at his Hebden Bridge show.

Tickets priced £10 for ‘After the Beginning. Before the End’ go on sale via the festival website www.hebdenbridgeartsfestival.co.uk from Friday, March 1 or at the first pop-up box office at Hebden Bridge Town Hall from 10am to 4pm on Saturday, March 2.