My Comedy Hero: Des Clarke on Tommy Tiernan

My Comedy Hero: Des Clarke on Tommy Tiernan

'He'll say "this is who I am" and he’ll wait til an audience comes to him'

When I was first getting in comedy about 2000, it was a great time for Irish comedy with Dylan Moran and Ed Byrne breaking through. And for me, Tommy Tiernan was someone who was just so mesmerising to watch. What he does as a comedian is draw people in while never pandering to an audience, he never says to a crowd, ‘I’m your pal, let’s talk’ what he does is say ‘this is who I am’ and he’ll wait til an audience comes to him.

I saw him at this raucous Late ‘n’ Live in the old Gilded Balloon in the Cowgate, where everyone died: even the guy sweeping the stage at the interval died on his arse just for being up here. Tiernan walked on and I thought, ‘here we go, they’re not going to take to this storyteller regaling us with whimsical stories about growing up in Ireland’ but he absolutely took the roof off that gig, just by standing still and drawing people in.

He’s spellbinding and can paint pictures with that poetic Irish use of language and just being bloody funny with it. He’s never compromised or tailored what he’s doing for TV or anybody else; he does what makes him happy and is true to himself: that is the strongest quality you can have as a comedian.

Des appears as part of the following dates: Punchline, Perth Concert Hall, Fri 25 Oct and Picture House, Edinburgh, Sat 26 Oct; The Saturday Show, The Stand, Glasgow, Sat 26 Oct; Jongleurs, Glasgow, Fri 8 & Sat 9 Nov. Des can also be heard every weekday morning at 6am on Capital Radio.

Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the information displayed here is accurate, always check with the venue before attending (especially during the Covid-19 pandemic).


Classic tale about the young street urchin and his genie pal.

The Bradford Playhouse

Sat 18 Dec 2021

£10–£50 / 01274 800415

Sun 19 Dec 2021

£10–£50 / 01274 800415

Mon 20 Dec 2021

£10–£50 / 01274 800415

…and 8 more dates until 29 Dec 2021

Nordoff-Robbins Comedy Gala

A stellar line-up for this charity event featuring Des Clarke hosting, plus Ray Bradshaw, John Gavin and Teddy raising funds for Nordoff-Robbins Music Therapy in Scotland.

Jongleurs Comedy Club

A team of Scotland's best are primed and ready to make you miserable lot laugh.


Punchline conjure up yet another smashing bunch of stand-ups. There's Seann Walsh's sharp observations, hospital radio madness from Ivan Brackenbury, Ian D Montfort's psychic shenanigans and Des Clarke being his usual cheeky self.

The Saturday Show

Saturday night in Glasgow, and The Stand has crammed some more top acts onto a stage for you. Get in early, as it sells out every time.

Jongleurs Comedy Show

Regularly firing comedy at you from all cylinders, with a stellar line-up each time.

Biggest Ever Blingo

Get your bingo on at this charity event hosted by Grant Scott and Des Clarke, including a three-course dinner, a generous half-bottle of wine per person and three games of bingo. Proceeds go to It's Good 2 Give, which supports young people with cancer.

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