Mark Watson brings new tour This Can’t Be It to London


The events of the past twelve-and-a-bit months, to give them a politely evasive name, have made us all think more regularly about the fragility of life than we probably would have liked to. Nothing focuses the mind than having a ‘daily death toll’ with your late afternoon glass of wine, or a tired-looking government scientist showing graphs and using phrases like ‘we anticipate many, many more fatalities’ in what used to be the ‘Escape To The Country’ slot.

But luckily, neurotic Taskmaster-survivor and author Mark Watson has been stressing about the frightening prospect of death since before it became fashionable. His intended 2020 show – on the cusp of going to Melbourne and Edinburgh festivals, before a typically extensive nationwide tour – was inspired by taking a life expectancy test (there’s an app you can get, if you’re having an existential crisis at 3am) and discovering he could expect to reach 78: in other words, he’s just over halfway to, as it were, the finish line.

What should we be doing with our time on earth, and how can we do it better? Watson has made a lot of strides towards happiness and fulfilment over the past few years. But there’s one problem left: and it really is a big one. The popular but all-too-mortal Radio 4 figure, star of ‘Live At The Apollo’ and House Of Games’ (which he won, but it’s not all about that) wrestles with some of the fundamental questions of life, with unusually high levels of benign audience involvement and the gag rate of an already fast-talking comedian who’s been imprisoned his house for more than a year.

This show has been some time in the making, thanks to all that unpleasantness with the virus. He’s rarely looked forward to anything in his life. All those 41 years of it to date.

Mark Watson had a pretty lively lockdown, as they go. With Tim Key and Alex Horne, he created the game ‘No More Jockeys’ which has now had more than 2 million YouTube views and found a rabid cult audience. He published his most critically acclaimed book to date, ‘Contacts’, and wrote another, non-fiction, title for release this year. He pioneered the Drive And Dine series of outdoor comedy gigs at the depth of the pandemic, and his company, Impatient, were one of the only ones to offer ‘tour shows’ run through Zoom calls, entertaining thousands of ticket-buyers deprived of other live comedy. He also completed a trilogy of 24-hour online shows, raising around £70,000 for charities. In March he curated the only overseas shows to be part of Melbourne International Comedy Festival, as part of their digital programme. For all this, he was one of the winners of Chortle’s Legends Of Lockdown awards, recognising comics who had gone above and beyond to entertain in these extreme times.

Before that, in the old days, the future national treasure had been a multi-award winner here and in Australia (a country we were once allowed to visit); a very familiar voice on Radio 4, where his series ‘Mark Watson Talks About A Bit Of Life’ has been one of the station’s most popular fixtures since 2007; and has most recently been working on a film project with Toni Collette and Studio Canal (while the rights to his graphic novel, ‘Dan And Sam’ remain in the hands of Universal). The live arena, though, is where he’s in his element the most, and this will be an emotional return to the rooms where he has, for almost two decades, established himself as one of the UK’s favourite stand-ups. Emotional, but also funny. See you there.



Friday 10th Trebah Amphitheatre, 01326 252200


Friday 17th Norden Farm, Maidenhead 01628 788997

Saturday 18th Square Chapel, Halifax 01422 349422

Sunday 19th Chorley Theatre, Chorley 01257 264 362

Monday 27th Theatre Royal, Winchester 01962 840440


Friday 1st The Elgiva, Chesham 01494 582 900

Sunday 3rd Royal Spa Centre, 01926 334418

Leamington Spa

Thursday 7th Helmsley Arts Centre, 01439 771700


Saturday 9th The Maltings, 01289 330 999


Sunday 10th The Stand, Newcastle 0191 232 0707

Saturday 16th The Savoy Theatre, 01600 772467


Sunday 17th Komedia, Bath 01225 489070

Sunday 24th Swindon Arts Centre, 01793 524481



Tuesday 2nd Tolbooth, Stirling 01786 274000

Wednesday 3rd The Stand, Edinburgh 0131 558 7272

Thursday 4th The Stand, Glasgow 0141 212 3389

Saturday 13th Festival Drayton Centre, 01630 654444

Market Drayton

Thursday 18th &

Friday 19th Norwich Playhouse, Norwich 01603 630000

Saturday 20th Quarterhouse, Folkestone 01303 760 740

Saturday 27th Blackheath Halls, London 020 8463 0100

Sunday 28th Chequer Mead Theatre, 01342 302000

East Grinstead


Thursday 2nd The Leadmill, Sheffield 0114 2727 040

Friday 3rd The Lowry, Salford 0343 208 6000

Saturday 4th The Dukes, Lancaster 01524 598500



Thursday 20th The Mill Arts Centre, 0129 5279 002


Friday 21st Artsdepot, North Finchley, 020 8369 5454


Saturday 22nd Bilston Town Hall, Bilston 01902 497222

Sunday 23rd Foxlowe Arts Centre, Leek 01538 386112

Thursday 27th Cheltenham Town Hall, 01242 850270


Friday 28th The Stables, Milton Keynes 01908 280800

Friday 29th The Brewhouse, 01283 508100


Sunday 30th Theatr Clwyd, Mold 01352 344101


Thursday 3rd Reading Town Hall, Reading 0118 937 3400

Friday 4th The Maltings, Farnham 01252745444

Saturday 5th Tobacco Factory, Bristol 0117 902 0060

Sunday 6th The Y Theatre, Leicester 0116 255 7066

Wednesday 9th Unity Theatre, Liverpool 0151 709 4988

Thursday 10th The Witham, Barnard Castle 01833 631107

Friday 11th Otley Courthouse, Otley 01943 467466

Saturday 12th Pocklington Arts Centre, 01759 301 547


Wednesday 16th Electric Palace, Bridport 01308 424 901

Thursday 17th Shanklin Theatre, Isle of 01983 868000


Friday 18th The Brewhouse Theatre & 01823 283 244

Arts Centre, Taunton

Saturday 19th The Watermark, Ivybridge 01752 892220

Friday 25th The Hazlitt, Maidstone 01622 758611

Saturday 26th The Corn Hall, Diss 01379 652241


Thursday 3rd The Astor Theatre, Deal 01304 370220

Friday 4th The Hawth, Crawley 01293 553636

Saturday 5th The Lights, Andover 01264 368368

Sunday 5th Huntingdon Hall, Worcester 01905 611 427


Thursday 5th Wyeside Arts Centre, 01982 552555

Builth Wells

Friday 6th The North Wall Arts Centre 01865319450


Friday 13th Loughborough Town Hall, 01509 231914


Saturday 14th Lincoln Performing Arts 01522 837600

Centre, Lincoln

Sunday 15th The Old Rep Theatre, 0121 359 9444


Thursday 19th Tivoli Theatre, Wimborne 01202 885566

Friday 20th McMillan Theatre, Bridgwater 01278 556677

Saturday 21st Tiverton Community Arts 07443 502523


Sunday 22nd Pavilions Teignmouth, 01626 249049



Wednesday 1st Plowright Theatre, 0844 844 0444


Thursday 2nd Brewery Arts Centre, Kendal 01539 725133

Friday 3rd The Atkinson, Southport 01704 533333

Saturday 4th Derby Theatre, Derby 01332 593939

Saturday 5th City Varieties Music Hall, 0113 243 0808


Friday 10th The Kenton Theatre, 01491 525050


Saturday 11th Colchester Arts Centre, 01206 500900


Friday 24th Kettering Arts Centre, 01536 513858


Saturday 25th The Pyramid Arts Centre, 01925 442345


Sunday 26th South Hill Park Arts Centre 01344 484123

& Wilde Theatre, Bracknell


Friday 15th Gloucester Guildhall, 01452 503050


Saturday 16th Pontardawe Arts Centre, 01792 863722


Sunday 17th Theatr Mwldan, Cardigan 01239 621200

Tuesday 19th Epsom Playhouse, Epsom 01372 742555

Wednesday 20th The Theatre, Chipping Norton 01608 642350 ON SALE JANUARY 2022

Thursday 21st The Place, Telford 01952 382 382

Saturday 23rd Tivoli Theatre, Aberdeen 01224 592755

Sunday 24th Theatre Royal Dumfries, 01387 254209


Saturday 30th The Point, Eastleigh 023 8065 2333

Sunday 31st The Corn Exchange, Exeter 01392 665938


Thursday 15th King’s Hall & Winter Garden, 01274432000



7TH October Helmsley Art Centre 01439771700