Spikey talks a language everyone understands

It’s not only kids who say the funniest thing - just ask stand-up comedian Dave Spikey.

The BAFTA nominee and double British Comedy Award winner makes his living out of exploring the vagaries of the English language.

It’s a childhood fascination that began with his dad’s insistence of a good education, and was given further mileage by the funny things his “mildly-eccentric” grandma would say.

“She would come out with the most outrageous sayings - she obviously rubbed off on me,” he said, recalling the day when she excitedly said she was ‘having two teeth out tomorrow and a gas fire put in!’

There’s no shortage of other material either: whether it be battling the annoying dumbing down of our native language by text speak and Facebook, regaling tales of misleading newspaper headlines or analysing ambiguous pop song lyrics.

“Eavesdropping is another thing, how it can be fun but also how you can get the wrong impression,” he explained.

Spikey returns to the live stage next month when he launches the fourth incarnation of his critically-acclaimed, hugely-popular Words Don’t Come Easy tour in New Mills.

The likeable comic, who co-wrote and co-starred in the Channel 4 classic Phoenix Nights alongside Peter Kay, has many TV credits to his name during his 20-plus year career, but he admits it is stand-up comedy where his heart truly lies.

“I definitely prefer stand-up, because I think it’s what I’m good at,” he said.

“What is great about comedy is that it is very subjective. As an observational comedian, we draw on personal and everyday experiences, exaggerate and amplify. It’s comedy by association, something that everyone can relate to.”

And Spikey is particularly looking forward to his tour appearance at the Art Theatre on Friday March 1, at 7.30pm.

“A lot of comedy for me is in the throwaway lines, the looks and expressions on your face, and you have to be close in for that, so I always prefer these more intimate venues.”

Finally, what’s next for the Lancashire-based funny man?

“I’ve been really lucky to have had two great careers,” said the former biomedical scientist.

“I’m working on a couple of screenplays, but would also love to have a go at directing.”

Tickets, priced £17, are available on 01663 742951 or visit www.arttheatre.co.uk.