Sarah Watson, director of the Whyte & Mackay Glasgow International Comedy Festival, shares the shows she can't wait to see at this year's festival.

An Audience with Elaine C Smith

King's Theatre, Friday 15 March, 7.30pm


Elaine C Smith is totally amazing, she’s been making people laugh since the bad old days when comedy was a total boys club and she’s never taken any nonsense while being a brilliant, smart performer. She’s won a BAFTA and both Richard E Grant and Peter Kay think she’s hilarious so I don’t know what further recommendation you need.

Andy Zaltzman: The Bugle Live

The Stand Comedy Club, Tuesday 19 March, 7pm


Everyone says that in the age of Brexit and Trump satire is dead, but Andy Zaltzman’s Bugle proves that is most definitely not the case. The Bugle has grown from cult favourite to massive global hit with its ridiculous take on politics, sport, science and random news from around the world, but this is their first time in Glasgow so it’ll be certainly be interesting to see what Andy and his guests will have in store.

Des Clarke: Broken

Garage, Friday 29 March & Saturday 30 March, 7.30pm


Des is a proper local boy made good, him off the telly (and the radio!) but stand up is where he got his start and it’s where he feels most at home. This year Des says he has some things to get off his chest so you can expect high energy comedy nonsense and punch lines hitting you at a million miles an hour, plus he’s free to swear which you certainly can’t do on the Breakfast Show…

An Evening Of Eric And Ern

King's Theatre, Tuesday 19 March



Remember when there was only one screen in the house and you weren’t constantly checking Twitter for audience reactions? Morecambe and Wise made the whole country laugh with their songs and sketches, and this show from the Olivier nominated duo behind the massive west end hit Eric & Little Ern brings some of their best loved routines back to life, along with a musical guest of course. Bring your da! Bring your gran! Make it a family night out.

Phil Differ: Me

Oran Mor, Saturday 23 March, 8pm


Phil Differ had in hand in some of Scotland’s greatest TV comedy hits, from Rab C Nesbitt to Chewin’ the Fat – so chances are you’ve been enjoying his work even if you didn’t know it. I would never want to bring up a gentleman’s age, but Phil is embracing his elder status in his GICF show - taking aim of modern life’s abundant and seemingly never ending annoyances, while also slyly questioning whether the ‘good old days’ were ever that good at all. Go to see one of the geniuses of Scottish comedy at work.

Jack Docherty : Miekelson and McGlashan – Serious Men

King's Theatre, Wednesday 20 March, 7.30pm


A polis you can laugh at without worrying you’ll get chucked in the back of a van, and a fiercely patriotic Scot who’ll crack you up rather than drag you into an unfortunate social media spat – this promises to be a great night of character comedy from Scot Squad star Jack Docherty. He’s from Edinburgh but of course we don’t hold that against him – we’re an international festival after all.

Siân Docksey: Canary

ARG at The Vacant Space, Saturday 30 March, 2pm


The Vacant Space has an excellent line up of indie comedy from the alternative end of the scene this year and Siân Docksey’s show promises to be a silly and subversive treat. She’s an up and coming queer millennial who is describing this work-in-progress performance as a “violent knitting experience / psychic Freudian shitcircus” and honestly I don’t think I could put it any better than that.

Jess Robinson: No Filter

Òran Mór, Friday 22 March, 8pm


Why shell out for concert tickets to see your favourite singing stars when you can hear them all at Jess’s show? Shakira, Adele and Kate Bush will all be getting an outing from this hilarious vocal gymnast, who’s appearing with a live band to make it a proper night out. She’s done everything from Britain’s Got Talent to The One Show and none other than Rory Bremner says she’s the “most exciting impressionist we have.”

Bobby Mair: Undeterred

Blackfriars Basement, Saturday 23 March, 9.15pm


Here are all the things you need to know about Bobby Mair: 1. He appeared on Katie Hopkins’ TV just so he could give the fee to people she hated. 2. He is a third cousin of Justin Bieber. 3. Doug Stanhope, Bill Burr and Jerry Sadowitz have all picked him to open for them. 4. His show at GICF will be brilliant.

James Campbell: The Hilariously Funny World of…

Eastwood Park Theatre, Saturday 30 March, 2pm

£10/£35 Family Ticket

We always have a strand of family shows in the festival – it’s good to remind folk that comedy is not all rude words and blue gags, plus we like to cultivate our audiences from as early an age as possible. James Campbell pretty much invented the idea of stand up for kids and he’s kept them entertained for the Royal Albert Hall to Broadway so this is definitely one to bring the brood to.

Reginald D Hunter: Facing The Beast

King's Theatre, Saturday 16 March, 7.30pm


Reginald D Hunter says that when he first stepped on stage as a comedian all he had was an accent and an attitude. Having honed his skills over twenty years at the microphone he has a lot more in his back pocket these days, but the attitude is still unmistakable. Reginald takes on topics that many would shy away from and his material is never less than searingly honest – he’ll make you think almost as hard as you laugh.

Robert Florence is Biscuity Boyle: My Bastart Life - One Last Time!

Oran Mor, Wednesday 20 March &Wednesday 27 March, 8pm


Who knew that Biscuity Boyle had a secret past life as an athlete, raconteur and disco dancer? This is your last chance to see Burniston’s favourite son live on stage with his memoir show which promises laughs, tears and screams of despair before the grand old man of Scottish comedy takes his final bow.

Chris Kent: Looking Up

Blackfriars Basement, Saturday 30 March, 9.15pm


Cork man Chris Kent is one of Ireland’s rising stars, a superb storyteller with a lovely laid back style – the perfect act for the Blackfriars Basement which is a such a nice, intimate room for comedy. Chris claims to have spent the past year balancing comedy with being a stay at home dad and trying to grow a beard so expect some observations on that and whatever else has caught his creative mind.

Paul Sinha: The Two Ages Of Man

The Stand Comedy Club, Monday 18 March, 7pm


Daytime telly fans know him for STV’s The Chase, where he goes by “The Sinnerman” but alongside his serious general knowledge prowess (currently ranked in the top ten of the European Quizzing Championships thank you very much) Paul’s stand up has been earning him critic acclaim for well over a decade. This show got a clutch of four and five star reviews at the Fringe and sees him reflect with trademark wit on the ageing process.

Stuart Laws Flops

ARG at The Vacant Space, Sunday 31 March, 8pm


The multi talented Stuart Laws is a sketch and stand up comedian who also writes, produces and directs for stage and TV. Lucky audiences at this GICF show will see his new stand up hour – the story of the day Stuart’s life changed forever and how he ended up on the final table in a poker tournament in Vegas. Expect an accomplished surrealist with smart, fast-paced material and a twisty way with words.

The Whyte & Mackay Glasgow International Comedy Festival is at venues across the city 14-31 March