A Cartoon History of Here

Tuesday 2nd May
Tony Husband and Ian McMillan
Written by Ciarán Hodgers
Ian McMillan and Tony Husband brought their rib-tickling poems and cartoons to the Music Room at the Philharmonic Hall as part of the opening week at WoWFest 2017. The self-professed Bard of Barnsley opened the evening with a surreal saunter down memory lane of bizarre signs and notices he’s collected from various town halls and venues he’s performed in. Taken out of context they were hilarious snippets reminiscent of place untouched by gentrified snobbery where real people still reside. He then spoke about being mistaken for another poet, or in one case a fireman, and finding himself in a room full of children, having to make it work either way. The audience howled with laughter as Ian admits to delivering the weirdest fire safety speech in history.

The calm collected cartoonist Tony Husband sat back a while, allowing Ian to fill the room with his booming warmth until he stood and the pair stumbled through an crowd-sourced improvised poem about the ‘Philharmonic Phantom’, ‘Hamish Conductor’ and a mystical roll of gaffer tape staged as a legendary bracelet.

The ease with which Ian and Tony both improvised words and illustration was slick and impressive. Tony’s ability to quickly and efficiently bring a blank sheet of paper to effortless life is wonderous and the pair have a natural chemistry that washes over the audience and invites them to join in the silly frivolity. A warm and welcoming evening that left everyone smiling all the way home singing to themselves.