Free entry to see Dalston-based comedian tonight

A Dalston-based comedian - who performs with a vacuum cleaner - is competing in tonight’s heat of a prestigious, long-running comedy competition.

Steve Aruni will appear with Henry the Hoover, in the fifth round of auditions for the New Act of the Year (NATY).

NATY has acted as an industry launch pad for the likes of Little Britain’s Matt Lucas, and stand up comedians Eddie Izzard, Russell Brand, Harry Hill and Stewart Lee.

The show used to be known as the Hackney Empire New Act of the Year, but the 29th final will be held at the Barbican instead of the Mare Street theatre, because of its closure and uncertain future.

Roland and Claire Muldoon founded NATY in the early 80s to encourage, discover and promote stand-up alternative comedy talent for the comedy circuit.


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Over 150 comedians have entered this year’s competition, and entrants must have performed for two years and have a recommendation from an established promoter.

Twelve acts will go through to the final at the Barbican on Saturday March 19 hosted by Arthur Smith.

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Auditions run every Tuesday until March 8 at Rich Mix in Bethnal Green Road, Tower Hamlets, and Monday February 28 at Greenwich Theatre Bar, Crooms Hill, SE10, and Monday March 7 at Theatre Royal Stratford East.

Entrance to Rich Mix in Bethnal Green Road, Tower Hamlest tonight is free, the show starts at 7pm.

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