Royal Variety Performance hit by hitches

  • Bang Showbiz
  • 7 December 2011
Peter Kay

Peter Kay

Peter Kay joked he wished he had ''thrown a sickie'' when recording the Royal Variety Performance took over four hours due to a series of technical problems

Peter Kay wished he had "thrown a sickie" when the royal Variety Performance recording hit a string of technical problems.

The 38-year-old comedian joked the event had become"20 minutes of entertainment dragged out over two-and-a-half hours" following a series of blunders which saw artists having to perform twice and several long delays between acts.

At one point, Peter told the audience - who had paid £300 for tickets - at the Lowry Theatre in Salford Greater Manchester: "Thanks for buying a ticket. Technically tonight you are my employers and judging by what's gone on I wish I'd thrown a sickie."

The comic was forced to ad-lib and repeat himself several times, while Barry Manilow had to perform twice when he was out of time with a backing track.

Following the interval, an announcement said: "Ladies and gentlemen, please remain seated, we have a technical problem but everything possible is being done. While we are addressing the problem, please welcome back to the stage, Peter Kay."

However, the stage was empty for several minutes before Peter re-emerged to ask, "Anyone got a screwdriver?"

The series of power cuts prompted slow-handclaps from the disgruntled audience, while the comedian was heard backstage trying to persuade Lord Andrew Lloyd-Webber to help him entertain the crowd, which included Princess Anne.

The annual event - which also featured performances from Nicole Scherzinger and Tony Bennett - took over four hours to record but will be heavily edited before ITV broadcast it as a two-and-a-half hour show on December 14.

A spokesperson for the channel said: "There were some minor technical difficulties during the recording of the show but these will not affect the programme broadcast on ITV1."


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