Rhod Gilbert

Rhod Gilbert

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A former market researcher, Carmarthen-born Rhod Gilbert began his comedy career in 2002, after taking a stand-up course.

That year he made the finals of the So You Think You're Funny? talent hunt at the Edinburgh Fringe, and in the next 12 months won the BBC New Comedy Award, the Paramount Gift Of The Gag competition and the Leicester Comedy Festival comedian of the year title. He was also a Chortle Award nominee for best new act, and runner-up n the Hackney Empire New Act Of The Year contest.

Review - Gilbert takes observational comedy to whole new levels. It's not just 'what's the deal with no-bio washing powder', but he obsesses and obsesses about the very idea, over-analysing it and becoming increasingly desperate for answers, and frustrated when they don't come.

The starting points are brilliantly accurate, but it's the maelstrom of angst he whips up around them that sweep you up, thanks to the powerful, passionate performance big enough to fill the larger venues Gilbert is increasingly playing.

Scarily intense, he's keen to reassure himself it's not just him who gets angry at such annoyances, pleading: 'You are on my side, aren't you?' as he sinks ever-deeper into the mire of fixation. It builds a bond that helps get over a couple of the more unlikely leaps into insanity.

He made his solo Edinburgh debut in 2005 with a show called 1984, describing the misery of growing up in the fictional Welsh town of Llanbobl, whihc was nominated for the Perrier best newcomer award. That year, he also won the Chortle award for best breakthrough act.

His 2008 Edinburgh show again caught the attention of judges and was nominated for the main if.comedy award. It lead to appearances on BBC One's Live at the Apollo stand-up showcase and the 80th Royal Variety Performance.

Gilbert has also appeared on Mock The Week, and he hosts a Saturday-morning show on BBC Radio Wales. In late 2008, he fronted a series of adverts to promote Welsh tourism.

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