Summer maybe gone and we may be racing headlong towards dark nigh and winter gloom — but cheer up! This week Norwich plays host to an extravaganza of great comedy. SIMON PARKIN previews what’s in store.

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PEACOCK AND GAMBLE

UEA LCR, October 13, £5, 01603 508050, www.ueaticketbookings.co.uk

Everybody’s favourite comedy nice boys Ray Peacock and Ed Gamble are the latest names to headline the UEA Comedy Club with what promises to be a gloriously silly show in the company of two overgrown toddlers. The pair met at a gig at Durham University where Ed was a student performing sketch comedy, after which Ray asked Ed to guest on his podcast The Ray Peacock Podcast, which won them a loyal fanbase and also enjoyed a sell-out live run at the Arts Theatre London. Chortle Comedy Award nominees in both 2011 and 2012, the pair have recently popped up on Radio 4 Extra and on Russell Howard’s Good News. That makes the title of their recent Edinburgh show — Don’t Even Want To Be On Telly Anyway — rather strange though you can see where they’re coming from as live is the only way to properly experience the madness and anarchic spirit of their performances.

JOSIE LONG

Norwich Playhouse, October 13, £12.50, 01603 598598, www.norwichplayhouse.co.uk

Once merely quirky, bordering on the twee, Edinburgh Comedy Award nominated Josie Long discovered a spikier edge with political material, and you can expect that to be developed further alongside more personal material in her latest show Romance and Adventure. If her last show was full of wide-eyed idealism, she’s now, having turned 30, become fully acquainted with disillusionment - the worse kind when you’ve actually tried to do something and realised how futile/difficult that really is. But thankfully the relentless optimism that the stand-up and novice climber has always been known for remains as does her ability to be extremely funny. “This is my sixth solo show and I’m going to try and make it the best one,” she says. “Come along, it’s going to be silly and fun and I’ll try to swear less this time.”

MILTON JONES

UEA LCR, October 15, £12.50, 01603 508050, www.ueaticketbookings.co.uk

Milton Jones bemused and slightly surreal world had long made him a popular comedian with Radio 4 listeners and on the comedy club circuit but since his increased television appearances, he seems to have made the jump to wider recognition and we just can’t get enough of him. The former Perrier Best Newcomer and Perrier Nominee has been a panellist many times on Mock the Week and Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow, while he also recently had a ninth series of his radio show Very World of Milton Jones commissioned. King of the surreal one-liners, he returns to Norwich for a special one-off appearance at UEA. Also appearing will be Matt Richardson, who since winning Chortle Student Comedy Award has became one of the most exciting new acts on the comedy circuit, and Chris Martin whose wholly original social commentary, observations and anecdotes have also marked him out as one to watch.

DANIEL SLOSS

Norwich Arts Centre, October 16, £13.50 (£10 cons), 01603 660352, www.norwichartscentre.co.uk

Despite his age, Daniel Sloss has been cracking gags for some time, trying his hand at stand-up comedy at the tender age of 16. At 17, he became one of the youngest-ever finalists in the prestigious nationwide competition So You Think You’re Funny?

Following the success of his 2009 Edinburgh show, Teenage Kicks, he appeared on Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow, 8 Out of 10 Cats and had his own BBC show The Adventures of Daniel, followed by his solo London debut at the prestigious Soho Theatre. Now 21, the charming Scottish stand-up arrives in Norwich on the back of another sold-out run in Edinburgh with his latest effort, imaginatively titled The Show. He recently left home so expect the domestic traumas of a bloke who does know how to work the washing machine to feature. Support comes from happy-go-lucky Geordie Kai Humphries.

COMEDY IN THE DARK

Cinema City, October 18, £10 (£9 members), 0871 9025724, www.picturehouses.co.uk

There are few arts events which are better off done in the dark. The cinema is one; comedy however usually strictly adheres to the rules of the visible spectrum.

But after sell-out success at the Edinburgh Fringe, Dave’s Leicester Comedy Festival and the Underbelly Festival, this unique comedy show arrives in Norwich doing exactly what the title says — comedians taking on the challenge of performing in total darkness. And by that they don’t mean just a little dark, we’re talking pitch black.

Fumbling their way on stage for this Norwich show will be some top notch stand-up talent including MC for the night David MorganKeith Farnan, Tom Deacon and Chris McCausland. David Morgan said: “It’s really odd. You have to use a completely different skill set. You can usually gage how well a joke is going by the expressions on faces.

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