Lee Evans: one name that will be forever remembered as a comedy giant. It was with great sadness that we learnt of his retirement. Evans announced in a recent interview with Jonathan Ross that his current tour, Monster, would be his last as he will be spending more time with his wife.
Who can blame him? A stand up career of over 20 years filled with laughter from the ‘sweaty monkey boy’. Evans is a man of a thousand faces and many characters. He has a unique slapstick-observational approach which causes fits of laughter. He appears to have a never ending amount of energy for his performences.
His first video was released in 1994, Live at Her Majesty’s Theatre. This is where we first saw his interpretation of Queen’s ‘Bohemian Rhapsody’ – a skit that he would be remembered for and which I had the pleasure of seeing again when I went to see his XL tour in Birmingham.
I have been lucky enough to see Evans twice, having watched his videos from a youngish age. He is a comedian that has set the bar of the modern comedy circuit, moving from theatres to arena tours, almost becoming the first comedian to perform at the O2 Arena in London (at the last minute Chris Rock appeared there before Evans did).
His previous tour, Roadrunner, sold £7m worth of tickets on the first day, leading to a further 17 dates being added to the tour. 10 years on and 9 tours later we say farewell and thank you for the laughs, the tears of joy and those moments when we find ourselves gasping for breath. Lee, it has been a privilege to follow your career. I will leave you with some of my favorite Lee Evans moments.