Roast Battle Manchester, a show that pushes the boundaries of comedy, has returned with a vengeance, promising more wit, humour, and biting roasts than ever before.
Manchester is a hotbed of incredible comics at the minute, so why not head down and sample some of the best the city has to offer?
In this interview, we delve into the fascinating backstory of Roast Battle Manchester, discover the secrets behind its cult following, and explore what you can look forward to on the night.
Get ready to meet the team behind the laughs as we embark on a journey through the world of Roast Battle Manchester with comic Michael Mannion, who co-founded the night with comic Jordan Ducharme.
Roast Battle Manchester
How long has it been going now and which venue can we catch a show at?
The show ran until February this year but we’ve decided to bring it back in conjunction with Roast Battles.
We had nine really wild shows with Roast at the Seven Oaks but we wanted to take things up a notch by joining a bigger collective and boosting our reach.
In the UK there will be us, Roast Battle London and Roast Battle Edinburgh, further afield there are something like 15 shows as well as a podcast in LA.
If you want to catch a show we’re upstairs at the Seven Oaks in Chinatown.
Can you tell us a bit of the story behind Roast Battle Manchester and how it came to fruition?
So it grew out of Jokes at the Oaks, for one of the birthday shows Dan Tiernan and Jordan roasted each other.
It was so funny, the crowd loved it and it kind of pushed us towards running it as its own show.
Since then Dan’s obviously gone on to be nominated for best newcomer at the fringe so Michael and Jordan will be running Roast Battle Manchester as we go forward.
Can you tell us what it’s all about?
If you’re unfamiliar with comedy roasts, it’s two comics going up against each other and trying to find the harshest but funniest things to say about their opponent.
The battle has between 3 and 5 rounds for the roasters to insult their opposite number, at the end it’s given to the three judges to decide who wins.
If it’s neck and neck we get the crowd to be the final vote.
Sounds quite brutal!
Oh it can be but often in life our friends can make the worst jokes about us without hurting our feelings and that’s the vibe we’re after.
We 100% want both comics to do well but sometimes there’s an outright winner. It’s a little like boxing in that sometimes, in quite brutal fashion there is a winner and a loser.
We really enjoy running them, sometimes they have a bad rep and some comics don’t like them but for us it’s the best kind of show when people don’t take it too seriously.
What are you most excited about for the show moving forward?
We’re doing it off the back of Jordan running a Roast Battle tournament at Stage and Radio.
It was 6 weeks of battles and we finally crowned our champion Kim Smith at the final a couple of weeks ago.
We’re taking the whole thing a little UFC / WWE in that we’re going to keep a win-and-loss record as well as having a belt for our champion. Kim’s getting crowned as the Manchester champion on the 28th and whoever wins the final battle of that night will have a shot for the title at our next show in November.
What’s the lineup looking like?
We’ve got one more battle to fix as someone had to drop out unfortunately but we can confirm that we have James Heath as our resident judge, joined by reigning champion Kim Smith as well as Mick Ferry as our guest judge.
Mick ran King Gong at the Comedy store so we’re looking forward to his feedback on the battles..
We’ve heard the night had a cult following, what do you think made that happen?
To be honest it was a bit of a surprise, Roast Battle on Comedy Central probably helped legitimise it as a night people will go out to watch.
It’s so much more of an American phenomenon and it was so nice to see there was an underground audience just waiting for the show to drop.
We’re also really lucky in Manchester that there is such a strong comedy scene to back up all the effort we’re putting in.
Who are some of your favourite roasters in the city?
James Heath is our resident judge, he did our first show and he was good off the bat we immediately made him a permanent fixture.
Justina Seselskaite is incredible so is Tegan Marlow and Mike Carter has killed whenever he makes it over from Liverpool.
Jordan has had some incredible battles and we’ve got a handful of undefeated roasters who we’ll be sending in against some tough opponents. From the tournament, we’d have to say Monty Wilson, Phil Sutton, Jane Postlethwaite and Ali Panting, all of who are on the show at the end of the month!
Can you tell us about some of the most memorable performances?
There’s been a few! We’ve had a couple of last-minute battles that really hit.
It sounds a bit Ru Paul’s Drag Race but we’ve had quite a few costume changes mid-roast.
It’s really surprising seeing the angles people come up with when they want to rinse a mate.
Where can people buy tickets for the event?
You can get tickets to this class event by clicking here
Show Date: Thursday 28th of September 2023
The Sevenoaks 5 Nicholas Street Manchester M1 4HL