WE HAVE FOR THE LAST TWO YEARS BEEN AWARDED THE FULL 5* FROM THE REVIEW SITE
Here are all our 2011 in full which are published in full by ex students
Review of stand up comedy courses from 10 November 2011
Comprehensive course suited for total beginners and covering essentials like mic technique, writing (and rewriting!) material, and engaging the audience. Harry is wonderful. Brutally honest yet encouraging, with good tips on how to crack into the business. Though I was totally terrified by the idea of taking to the stage at the beginning of the six weeks, I felt completely prepared for my Up the Creek showcase. Course is good fun, with lots of opportunities to bond with classmates
Review of stand up comedy courses from 26 August 2011
Just completed the intensive comedy course – two days, twelve changes of underwear. The course is the equivalent of a rollercoaster ride through fire, on acid! Harry the tutor is the Voldermort of comedy – scary, razor sharp and a master of his craft. All in all the two days rated 9.5 on the sphincter scale and was one of the best things I have done for a for a very long time. I would thoroughly recommend it to anyone, whether you want to get into the game and learn from the best, if you want to push your boundaries and see what you are capable of, or if you just want to have a laugh and learn some new skills that can be applied in lots of different situations. So glad I did the course and so grateful to Harry for his honesty, passion and expertise.
Review of stand up comedy courses from 16 August 2011
Did the taster session at the weekend which was a 3 hour class and had it booked as a gift from b/f. Not my first idea for a present and booked because I somehow said I liked stand up comedy, not thinking that meant he would then book me on a course to try it. I must say, it was a really fun session and lots of it was spent working on the performance stagecraft behind the mic and you really do see how the pro’s do it and make it look easy. It’s not, trust me and it took me a few goes to get the mic and mic stand facing the same way once I finished talking. The tutor was really good and although it was just a taster session, he expected and got high standards out of all of us (12 in the group).
Review of stand up comedy courses from 1 June 2011
I suspect that one of the main reasons that Manchester United have been so successful is that Sir Alex Ferguson kicks the shit out of his players. Now I wouldn't say that Harry runs the London Comedy Course like a boot-camp, but he doesn't pull any punches when it comes to impressing upon his students the standards required to deliver a stand-up performance worthy of the stage at the revered church known as Up The Creek. On Monday at the "dress rehearsal" shall we say, Harry told me that the new material I had written was not up to scratch and that he would not let me on stage. And this was crushing for me as I will explain later. So we had a "discussion" about the material I performed in class - he insisted that it work - I was not so sure that it would. Of course, the outcome was that Harry won (well there was never going to be any other winner - I did cop myself on at one point by asking myself the question: which one of us two has been performing stand-up all over the country, night-in night-out?). As long as I could, for want of a less cliched phrase, "get my act together" with the older material, it was possible I might rescue the situation, which I did and the following evening I am stood on the Up The Creek stage and a packed audience is showering me with the same laughter and affection that we gave to the likes of comedy heavyweights such as Harry Enfield, Jo Brand and the much loved and much missed genius, MC and former owner of the Creek and the ground-breaking Tunnel Club, Malcolm.
Review of stand up comedy courses from 27 May 2011
Do this course just to experience the tutor. In six weeks Harry will take you apart and rebuild you on and off stage with brutal honesty and a real sense that he wants you to do well and not fail. Nothing gets past him, if something is shit, you get told it's shit, joke doesn't work, he gets it to work.
He is as honest about himself as he is of the students, and see him perform and you will understand everything he teaches in class, he does on stage. He should bottle the teaching style and sell it to very school in the land. Think of your best teacher at school and that is the same feeling you get with him, you want to please him, he commands order without losing temper and praises you at the oddest moments which really boosts your confidence. In week one for example, a student was acting up and being a bit of a knob as he had already done some comedy gigs, Harry gave him these words of wisdom as best as I can remember or words thereabouts. ‘’'On stage you think, what you are doing is funny, clever and trying and so failing to be the class clown. What we, as a class are seeing however is just a wa*k%r. My job is to stop you looking a tit and an embarrassment and maybe help you gain more friends and not alienate yourself in these awkward social situations. Sit down there and we will start again, forget about this and all take a fresh look at you, and I will find and hopefully like the real you or walk out that door now and feel free to brag to everyone that the course, all of us and the teacher are all tossers and it is all shit, but we know the truth. It will be a waste as there are elements in your performance I really like, let me get them working to your favour and if in six weeks you are still acting like a nob, and still not liked by anyone here, I will give you your money back , does that sound fair?.’’ He took the easy way out and never came back in week two.
The course is connected with Gordon Ramsey in some way and they run special competitions for ex students connected with him. Love to see Harry and Gordon in an argument, Gordon shouting and swearing, Harry claim and cutting, not one of them will give in to the other – not sure who’d win. Make great telly though.
Typical Harry moment is when we were at our actual showcase at the end of the course, 10 mins before we all go on stage at ‘Up The Creek’ in front of 200 people , and we are should I say somewhat nervous. We get summoned to a meeting. We all gather, he walks in and says ‘ Soon you are on stage in front of 200 people, friends, family some important bookers. Don’t Fuck Up, end of prep talk’ and he walks off and that is so typical Harry, it made us laugh and relaxed us and once again he read us all and knew what to do.
Lots of good reviews of the comedy course but it is him that should be the brand, not the course. Forget expensive life coaches, just spend some time with Harry.
I miss the Monday nights now I have finished.
Ps I got the laughs as expected by Harry at my showcase, thanks for believing in me and knowing what will work on stage. No more puns after our week two session I promise!
Review of stand up comedy courses from 12 May 2011
Booked a three hour private session @ £25 per hour with them as already doing stand up and I have been gigging for about a year. I never did any of their full courses, but my experience was as good as the previous reviews. I just did the individual teaching session and even on the initial phone enquiry found them to be very professional and the lady asked a number of questions about type of comedy I was doing and where I was playing. She then told me the tutor would call me back and he did and again gave great advice over the phone, in fact it was better advice then I had from another ‘so called’ comedy tutor found on the net who charged me £30 to meet me in a coffee shop (their choice) and we just spoke for an hour, with no chance to actually perform any of my stuff or if I did, it would be to a packed Costa Coffee venue which I had no intention of doing and I came away with nothing. It actually cost me £35 when I added the cost of my coffee and one for that tutor!
The London Comedy Course is really in a different league, they have their own premises, have a simulated comedy club room with full stage, lights and sprung floor staging which I was the first student to try out. The classroom basically is set up as a little comedy club with a stage , mic, PA and chairs in four rows. The classroom is about 30ft by 20ft and they have three other rooms and a really nice venue which is 2 mins from New Cross BR. The AV’s are good with wifi, CD and IPod connections and DVD and TV and are happy to allow you to video parts of your session (bring a connector to connect to their TV monitor so you can see yourself while on stage). You can also use their computer and printer.
The first thing Harry the tutor did was give me a joke to perform in my own style to see what changes I would make to it and for him to start to form an opinion on my style. Odd as by letting me perform my set, he would also get the same result. I did it and suddenly accepted why he asked me to do the exercise as he asked me to treat it as a mini performance and include my greetings and my exits. From that simple task he had identified a number of problems which on reflection once pointed out were actually obvious mistakes I had been making. We spent next 5 minutes just looking at walking on and off stage and getting that right. He then let me do my set and identified that I over explain a joke, try and top a good gag with a gag which isn’t as strong and have a tendency to tell a joke instead of performing it. He also identified that I show no connection with the audience as there is nothing in my set about me and at no stage do I look anywhere apart from ahead. On the one occasion I did perform the joke in my set it was after first telling the joke, so the performance aspect would have been lost. I had been in the classroom for 15 minutes and already I had been given a full breakdown of my set and areas to work on.
Highly recommended and also although I booked three hours, he said after and hour and a half that I didn’t need the extra time so just charged me £30. I walked away with fresh ideas and a new structure and the changes actually work.
Review of stand up comedy courses from 25 February 2011
I really enjoyed the course and thought that Harry was an excellent tutor. In my first ever gig since the course I won the trophy at The Cavendish Arms, there were 26 comedians there taking part! The 3 main reasons why it is worth doing the course are: 1. You get straight down to business from the very first minute of doing the course with no mucking about. 2. The tutor is honest with everyone so you know what is working and what isn't. 3. He makes sure that you are disciplined and won't accept a laissez-faire attitude. There are also optional trips to go and see comedy being performed. I cycled to the course and they have a safe and secure bike rack so this is a great way to get there. Overall a great course!
Review of stand up comedy courses from 7 February 2011
Excellent course, now running my own chain of comedy clubs called 'Comedy Punch' and given me a real insight into the industry
Review of stand up comedy courses from 4 January 2011
This course has changed my life!! I did the London Comedy Course, 2 day weekend stand up course with Harry Denford and it has really opened up a creativity that I thought I had lost. Since finishing the course, I have won a competition and performed in HK, Melbourne, Sydney & Singapore. I did the international gigs whilst on holiday as the course inspired me to just "give it a go" and I sent my showcase clip out for a laugh and got great feedback and was booked for gigs in every location - and I learnt so much from performing in so many different places and have been told by every venue that I could have a spot anytime I am back! This has increased my confidence and I couldnt have done it without Harry. Harry is an amazing teacher and director - he really helps you to find the performer within you, and will be brutally honest if what you are doing isn't funny and help you find the humour in what you are trying to present. So don't be scared that you're "not funny", or that "its difficult" or any other doubts you may have - just do it! You will thank yourself for it afterwards! Harry is extremely supportive and wont let you perform anything that isn't good - hence the high standard of performers that graduate from his courses. Its inspiring to see how good the new comedians are that come from his course - most have never done it before and this talent has been drawn out and nurtured throughout the course. Another aspect of the course that I have appreciated, is the community Harry builds, introducing comics to each other and I feel that due to this I have made so many, very supportive friends in the industry already which inspires me to keep on with it. I am proud of what I have achieved in the past 6 weeks since doing the course and feel it was time and money well spent and I look forward to doing more!