Three men in a Bow Tie
Classic Comedy

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Freda
"A modern-day Flanders
and Swann"

Reviews & Testimonials

We've been sent a limerick about our 500th show (at The Wightman Theatre in Shrewbury) in October 2105...

The Three Bowties

Those wonderful persons in bowties
(jazzy waistcoats – whatever)
Construct lyrics never less than wry.
On matters agricultural -
Cultural or sociological -
They always bring a warm tear to your eye.


MIKE WILLMOTT
SHREWSBURY WORDS 17.10.16
(the Monday morning after the Saturday night before)

 

AUDIENCE REACTION TO OUR 20th ANNIVERSARY CONCERTS

IN SHREWSBURY, DECEMBER 2013

 

“We got swept out with the crowd last night – please accept a HUGE bravo to you all. I have a handbag full of wet tissues from crying with laughter” Susie – Pontesbury

 

“Yet another Tour de Force from some very talented people!” Anthony – Telford

 

“The perfect start to Christmas”. Rosemary - Cross Houses

 

“Thanks for a brilliant show last night. It was as hilarious as ever!” Tess – Bomere Heath

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AUDIENCE FEEDBACK from our November 2013 Water’s Upton concert

The audience was in a state of paralytic and incontinent laughter at Waters Upton Village Hall on Friday evening as Three Men In A Bow Tie visited us on their 20th anniversary tour.

The blend of the quirky off-the-wall performance of Pontesbury farmer Martin Jones (aka Freda Brace-cock, in his female incarnation), Sally Tonge as the vocalist and guitarist who can work her audience into synchronised swimming routines on dry land, and Chris Eldon Lee as the anchor man who holds the show together is so much more than the sum of the 3 constituent parts.
We could all identify with Sally’s rising fuel bill re-wording of The Doors number “Light My Fire” and relished her version of Victoria Wood’s “Let’s Do It”.

Martin’s “Robot Milker” was just hysterical and his travails with “Derek Lovell”, the work experience lad down on the farm, struck a chord even with the more urban members present.

Chris’ verbal gymnastics with Shropshire place names inevitably culminating in a Waters Upton punch line was both cleverly scripted and heart-warming.

What is their special ingredient as they launch into their 21st year?

They are completely unique, delightfully naughty and very, very nice.

Oh, and we laughed all the way home and into the night.

Anthony Lowe

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Friday, 22nd November 2013 at Middletown Village Hall, near Welshpool:

Fantastic evening !! I have seen the Three Men in a Bow Tie twice before, and their show on 22nd November was just as brilliant as ever.

Congratulations to you all !! Janet Cresswell

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Last night, Sal, Chris and Martin - aka Three Men in a Bow Tie - descended on Snailbeach village hall. This was a fund raising event for Stiperstones School and we were promised an evening of humour, song and monologue. What an understatement! The sell out audience was warmed up within minutes and united in laughter at this unique take on rural life. The good honest humour picked up everybody without exception. Moments of the evening are still being shared between neighbours and still raising a smile.

We have never attempted to set up this type of fundraising event before and there was initially worry over how to organise it. With hindsight, these fears were unfounded as the "Bow Ties" provided the show; we just had to sell tickets, set up a bar and line up the chairs! A great night with over £800 raised.

Go and see these guys or even better, book them for your own community event. You won't regret it! I'll never look at a piece of binder twine the same way again.......

Dave Jackson - on behalf of Friends Of Stiperstones School.
November 2013
 

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Feedback from the concert organisor at Marthall Hall, Cheshire, October 2013:

Thank you very much for entertaining us. I have not heard my Dad laugh like that for ages. Everyone I spoke to at the end said how much they had enjoyed it. I will speak to you soon regarding next year!

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Reaction to our Arts Council Wales performance in Fairbourne, August 2013.

“There wasn’t a dry seat in the house”. Joyce

"Funniest ‘Night Out’ that I have enjoyed in a very long time. Great Show!". Bernard.

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“The best thing to come out of Shropshire in ages” Edinburgh Festival

“Non stop hilarity” Shropshire Star

"An amazingly witty show. I just couldn’t stop laughing” Shrewsbury Chronicle

“Extremely funny.” Ludlow Assembly Rooms.

“They won a standing ovation” Shrewsbury Music Hall

“Everyone really enjoyed the show and we made around £900 profit" "Terrific" "Wonderful" "We haven’t laughed so much in years” Local venue organisers

“I laughed so much I fell off my chair and they had to cart me off to hospital” Three Men in a Bow Tie’s one and only ambulance case!

From The settlement of Bleddfa - November 2007

The settlement of Bleddfa didn’t quite know what had hit it when ‘Three Men in a Bowtie’ came to entertain us on the12th. For a start, one of the ‘men’ was a woman. She had a great singing voice and began with the poignant “From a Distance”, but from then on it was comedy all the way. One of the men was a farmer from Shropshire, and the theme of the songs and monologues was mainly the earthy humour of rural life. A highlight was when he dressed up as a farmer’s wife and did amazing things with baler twine.

The ladies in the audience seemed to enjoy ‘The Chain Letter’, whereby they were invited to send their husbands to the woman whose name appeared on the top of the list, and in eight days’ time they would receive 1528 men. If they broke the chain, they got their own husband back!!

The audience was kept hugely entertained throughout, and the laughter was loud and long. There cannot have been any better comedy on TV that night. At the end of the evening, during his vote of thanks, a certain gentleman was presented with one of the baling twine concoctions, and we understand he has forsaken Wagner’s ‘Ring Cycle’ in favour of ‘Just a Thong at Twilight’.

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From Chris Edwards of Ryton Village Hall, Shropshire:

The washing up has been done - the floor has been swept - and the money has been counted and we send a big thank you to Three Men In A Bow Tie because :

1) It was the only occasion that we have pre-sold a full house

2) We made more money than we have ever made at any single event in the past, covering approximately one third of our annual overheads. All due to your well deserved reputation for giving an evening of excellent entertainment. Let us know when you are free again and we will get you back pronto.

Many, many thanks and keep the country laughing.

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From Ruth Pidsey of Capenhurst Village Hall, Cheshire:

This was an absolutely brilliant show. We had a sell out audience and had to turn away potential customers by the middle of last week. And any venue yet to host this act is guaranteed to have a great night. You will laugh until the tears roll down your cheeks. They are a great act to work with – very easy going. Could Freda Brace-cock please come back to run thong making workshops?

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The Cider Press ( Herefordshire ) - 29th April 2006

Stoke Lacy Village Hall rocked with the sound of laughter on the night of 29th April. Three Men in a Bow Tie, fresh from their international tour incorporating Bromyard, the Edinburgh Fringe and numerous parts of Shropshire, performed to a capacity audience.

The trio is made up of Chris Eldon Lee, Martin ‘Monologue’ Jones and Nonny James. The latter is the most definitely of the female persuasion; something that was pointed out to great comic effect in their first song. The threesome went on to entertain an increasingly enraptured audience with a mixture of jokes, monologues and more songs.

During the course of the evening, through light hearted and witty banter, the trio managed to insult most sections of the audience whilst cleverly avoiding alienating anyone. The residents of Bromyard were the recipient of many ongoing gags and these were received in the spirit in which they were given.

Highlights of the evening included Martin Jones’ phone call from his relief milkman - which struck a chord with the farmers in the audience, a cleverly written song poking gentle fun at topical news items and the unforgettable Ivor Biggun. After the interval, things got a little more risqué. No one there on Saturday night will ever forget the vision which was Freda the Female Farmer. Certainly this reviewer had her legs firmly crossed at the sight of Freda’s attempt at diversification; thongs made from Hessian. Just imagine where the knots go, ladies!

An evening of gut wrenching and tear inducing humour? Absolutely. If you weren’t there, you missed a treat.

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From Peter Poole at Stoke Lacey - June 2006

There is something about Stoke Lacy Village Hall and darned good entertainment!

Janet Ivison and her fellow committee members engaged the satirical singing group "Three Men in a Bow Tie" (actually two men and a woman) to make a fund raising visit to the village hall, and what followed was an evening of highly entertaining humour and outrageous fun as this outstandingly versatile trio treated an enthusiastic audience to their own perceptive, view of rural life and topical issues.

Nonny James and Chris Eldon Lee (who both work for BBC Radio) and Martin Jones (a Shropshire dairy farmer) have between them put together a rich vein of material and, what's more, possess abundant talent to present it. In a fast flowing review the audience are entertained with a series of monologues, songs and topical comments which any group would be hard pressed to match; indeed, "Three Men in a Bow Tie" have performed at the Edinburgh Festival.

The evening contained such delights as the song about Joyce the love-lorn librarian; Martin's mobile telephone conversation with John, his rather dim relief milker, and John's efforts to start the tractor ("John, take the nail out of the toolbox and jiggle it around in the hole on the control panel"- we all know that farmer!); Nonny's calypso to the inadequacies of men; Chris's wonderfully humorous rendition of The Shipping Forecast and a topical round-up of recent events (yes-two shags Prescott included).

If one had to be selective - and it is by no means easy given the overall high standard of the performance - the appearance of the inimitable Freda the Female Farmer was the highlight of the evening. With her glamorous outfit, tattered wax jacket tied with binder twine and green wellies, the fabulous Freda regales the audience with her adventures, and ventures, to make the most of rural life.

Far be it from me to reveal what her latest line in intimate apparel is; just, dear reader, catch up with "Three Men in a Bow Tie" as soon as you can.

lots of bow ties
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