Do student gigs? I'd rather grate my hands

October 21, 2005

Comedians working the university circuit are becoming almost as selective in their choice of campuses as the students who make up their audiences, a Times Higher survey discovers.

Comics have shared the pain of performing in front of drunken crowds from "posh" universities such as Oxbridge. Comedian Anna Crilly said: "I find student gigs the most excruciatingly stressful and painful times in my life. Mostly I'd rather spend the evening grating my own hands."

Martin Davis, another comic, said Oxbridge freshers' balls were "hell".

"They are snooty. It's as if they're thinking, 'Look what we bought tonight'."

But some comics consider students a breath of fresh air. Russell Kane said:

"They are perhaps the best audiences. The chips on their shoulders have barely been fried."

Features, page 23

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