Ladies n Genminminminmin (er min...) welcome BACK - for a second pass through the Good Listening To "Clearing" - this time with even better sound - the warm, wonderful and absolute comic genius that is "Tweedy The Clown" from Gifford's Circus!
A special interview complete with "Keef - the Pet Rescue Iron!" for company!
Ohhhhh yes! Alan Tweedy Digweed aka "Tweedy the Clown" is a true comic genuis in the Stan Laurel 'Vaudevillian' styley.
Me and my extended Fam-Squad have been going along to see him in Gifford's Circus for the last 17 of their 21 years of existence. Tweedy is always at their heart as the warm & wonderful comic centrepiece that he is!
A source of great joy, for me he is a living personification of Stan Laurel which is why I adore him so much!
A wonderful converation indeed riffing on all things comedy, slapstick & Vaudeville!
More about Tweedy:
Alan ‘Tweedy’ Digweed was born to be a Clown. He was born small and hung onto his childhood a lot longer than most. He did not go through puberty until he was in his late teens, by which time he had learned to make people laugh since his early school days, as an effective coping mechanism.
He was inspired by a generation of silent comics in black and white movies on TV. Legends like Laurel and Hardy, Buster Keaton and Harold Lloyd were later joined in real life by lesser known local stars like Johnny Hutch and Barry Grantham.
Alan Digweed was at Art School learning animation when he realised he did not want to draw the character, he want to be the character. He decided to try his luck in show business. Panto provided Alan with his first opportunities to make members of the public laugh at his antics.
Then his first clowning job was for Zippo’s Circus but as a publicity clown not in the big top itself. The name ‘Weedy’ was already taken so Alan took the name ‘Tweedy’ acknowledging his Scottish heritage.
Tweedy learned his traditional Clown-craft over 8 years at Zippo’s before joining Gifford’s Circus where he has been for the last 16 years developing his own unique character and style, celebrating his inner child, with the aid of an iron called Keef which he rescued from a wardrobe rubbish bin.
Tweedy’s strange signature hair is the result of a visual gag that went wrong! At each show Tweedy fell into a birthday cake and stayed there to keep the laughter going. On this occasion his hair caught fire without him even realising it at first. When he did, he spontaneously used the cake itself to put the fire out! Improv meets Health and Safety with a smile...
Tweedy is a fascinating multi-faceted character who has been described as “the Mark Rylance of Clowns” which is praise indeed. This is a weird and wonderful episode which gets beneath the traditional facade of circus clowning and provides priceless insights into its rich history and heritage.
Tune in next week for more stories of 'Distinction & Genius' from The Good Listening To Show 'Clearing'. If you would like to be my Guest too then you can find out HOW via the different 'series strands' at 'The Good Listening To Show' website.
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Thanks for listening!