Feature: Paddy McGuinness talks Phoenix Nights to playing Harrogate’s Royal Hall
Being stuck for words isn’t a quality you would normally associate with Bolton-born presenter Paddy McGuinness, writes Dan Windham.
From his outlandishly confident demeanour whilst playing Paddy O’Shea in Phoenix Nights to his cheeky banter with his ever-changing Take Me Out contestants, Paddy has never appeared reserved.
However, while the comedian has been anything but quiet over the past few years, his loyal fans have had to show a degree of patience by waiting four years for him to resurrect his career as a stand-up.
It’s been four years since the Paddy McGuinness: Saturday Night Live Tour but, come September, Harrogate fans will be treated to a new routine with the comedian armed with fresh material.
In 2013, Paddy and his wife Christine welcomed twins into their family and that experience, Paddy explained, has been the catalyst for his Daddy McGuinness tour which kicks off in Scunthorpe.
Paddy explained: “I think it’s important that, when you go on tour you have something to talk about and, since my last tour I have been doing television work and everything else which has been great.
“But, since I’ve had my children there are so many things that are happening to me that I have just have to talk about.
“When you have kids you will go through a whole range of emotions and so many new things will happen to you and you tell people about them and they say ‘yeah, so what?’.
“All this has been happening and I have been jotting them down so that’s the sense of the tour and you will either come out of it saying that you want kids or you’re going to have a vasectomy.”
Since appearing alongside Peter Kay as Paddy the doorman in the 2001 critically acclaimed series Phoenix Nights, Paddy’s career has flourished under the guise of a brazen but loveable character.
His character’s appeal to the audience, and his hilariously endearing relationship with Peter Kay, not only helped make the show so successful but also spurned the spin-off comedy: Max and Paddy’s Road to Nowhere.
It’s been 11 years since the adventures in the campervan and almost 15 years since we first saw the Phoenix Club but, as part of Comic Relief, the doormen decided the time was right to see the club rise again as part of 15 live shows.
Despite the considerable length of time apart, audiences clearly haven’t grown distant from the show’s appeal with a host of rave reviews and a staggering £5m raised, with Paddy describing the reaction as ‘humbling’.
He said: “It has not been on TV for a while and so, when we are doing the arena shows for 14,000 people a night, and they’re all sold out, and you walk on that stage and see people there dressed in your costumes, it’s a little bit humbling.
“It’s been smashing being reunited with everyone. More or less all the lads keep in touch but even though we might not see each other a lot anymore, when we all get back together in one room, it seems like we’ve never been away.
“We’ve picked up exactly where we’ve left off, there has been relentless mickey taking but it’s actually a lot of fun, I nearly said you feel genuinely sorry for getting paid for doing it but then I remembered we are doing it for charity.
“We do talk about bringing the show back and we’ve got stuff written down, little Christmas specials but, like anything it’s finding the time to get it done.”
A new stand-up tour, Take Me Out and any return of the cult show would definitely ‘ding dang do’ for us Paddy.