FUNNYMAN Carl Lawrence only started doing stand-up six months ago.
But already the 28-year-old milkman, who is following in the footseps of other famous Bolton comedians such as Peter Kay , Paddy McGuinness and Dave Spikey , has been snapped up by comedy club giant Jongleurs and is now due to perform a national tour, starting at the Octagon Theatre .
The father-of-four, who was brought up in Farnworth before moving to Little Lever , said: “I had a friend who said, ‘you’re a funny lad, you need to get into comedy’.”
He ended up taking part in open-mic nights at comedy clubs and went down a storm at three Beat the Frog nights, where amateurs take to the stage at the Frog and Bucket in Manchester and Preston.
Mr Lawrence also impressed at the King Gong amateur comedy night at The Comedy Store in Manchester.
He then went to London to compete in Comic Idol at Jongleurs, making the final 10 out of 200 hopefuls.
Mr Lawrence, a former pupil of Our Lady of Lourdes School and Mount St Joseph, in Farnworth, said: “Out of those 200 people, some of them had been in the industry for up to 10 years. I got called up first to go up in front of everyone.”
He performed in front of Maria Kempinska, Jongleurs founder, ’Allo! ’Allo! actress Vicki Michelle and Show Me The Funny winner Patrick Monahan.
He said: “The feedback I got off them was fantastic. I didn’t win but I was asked back to perform at their newest venue, Piccadilly London, with Andre King.
“It was such a fantastic night, the roof lifted off the place.
“I then got a phone call from Jongleurs to say they would like to sign me to their agency.”
Jongleurs, which has clubs in Birmingham, Bristol, London, Glasgow, Nottingham and Portsmouth, is hosting a Comedy On The Road tour, with comedians visiting towns and cities across the country.
The Bolton Wanderers fan, who goes by the stage name of Carl “Chunk” Lawrence, said: “I’m Bolton born and bred. What better way to launch my professional career than by bringing it to Bolton? “I get a lot of people who say I’m kind of a mix between Peter Kay and Johnny Vegas. If I can be half of what they are, that would be absolutely fantastic for me.”
Mr Lawrence, has three daughters, aged six, four and two, and a 10-week-old son, and he now lives in Wigan. He has gone part-time so he can concentrate more on his comedy.
Speaking of his act, he said: “I’ve been with my missus for 10 years. I talk about home life, work life, the kids.” The tour starts at the Octagon on September 28, 7.30pm Tickets, £12 to 14 or £10 concession. Call 01204 520661 for tickets.