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    Press release

    BBC Faces of Comedy opens

    Press release - 30 Jun 2017

    BBC Faces of Comedy photographic exhibition opens at The Forum, Norwich, on Saturday 1 July

    A fascinating photographic exhibition called ‘BBC Faces of Comedy’ opens at The Forum, Norwich, on Saturday 1 July presenting over 80 photographs of some of the nation’s favourite comedians. 

    Lifes Too Short, Ricky Gervais & Stephen Merchant, production shot, S1 Ep1  2011, Copyright BBC

    From Tony Hancock, Victoria Wood and David Jason to Rowan Atkinson, Ricky Gervais and Miranda, these popular stars of BBC comedy have made us laugh for decades.

    This unique photographic display peeps behind the comic mask to show us some of our greatest comedians at work – behind the scenes, on set among the paraphernalia of cameras and microphones, in avid script discussion, or just enjoying a well-earned cuppa. It reveals nothing less than broadcast comedy in action.

    The Goon Show, Harry Secombe, Peter Sellers and Spike Milligan, 1956 Copyright BBC

    The BBC asked two of its most popular comedians, Paul Merton and Adil Ray, to act as expert comedy curators of this exhibition, selecting the comedy stars and shows that mean the most personally to them. Their witty and illuminating comments form part of the display’s interpretation.

    Ranging from the 1930s to the present day, this exhibition has been taken from the BBC’s Photo Library. The BBC’s iconic archive contains over four million photos taken both on set and on location, many of which have never been seen by the public before.

    Miranda 'A Brief Encounter'  S3  Ep6  2012, Copyright BBC

    Robert Seatter, Head of BBC History, said: “The BBC is delighted with this photographic display, charting the history of this important entertainment genre. We hope it will inspire visitors to think about the art of broadcast comedy in fresh and different ways.”

    Richard Fair, Events Manager at The Forum, Norwich, said: “I don’t belieeeeeeeve it! I challenge visitors to the exhibition to look at the photographs without a huge smile on their face! The memories, the faces, the laughs – it’s a fantastic exhibition that appeals to all ages and we’re delighted to host it throughout the summer. I expect to hear plenty of quotes from lots of classic comedy shows uttered by our visitors. Don’t panic!”

    This is a BBC exhibition and the tour is organised by Compton Verney. The exhibition is on display in The Gallery, at The Forum, from Saturday 1 July until Thursday 31 August 2017. It is free to enter and open daily 10am – 4pm.


    For images from the exhibition and further information please contact Lindsey Roffe, Marketing & Communications Manager at The Forum on 01603 727950 email: lindsey.roffe@theforumnorwich.co.uk

    Notes to editors

    About The Forum:

    • The Forum, in the centre of Norwich, is one of the UK’s most successful Millennium projects.
    • It’s a public building, open seven days a week, all year round (except Christmas Day and Boxing Day).
    • Everyone is welcome. Most of the public events, exhibitions and activities which take place at The Forum are free.
    • The Forum Trust is the independent, self-financing, charitable organisation which manages The Forum building.
    • It is responsible for The Forum’s continued development, growth and innovation.
    • The Trust works with many partners to ensure The Forum plays a valuable role in the community.
    • Details about the charitable ‘project purpose’ which under-pins The Forum are on the website