THE most viewed British comedian of all time on TikTok, infamous prankster and Lee Nelson creator Simon Brodkin is all Screwed Up at the Grand Opera House, York, on Saturday.
That night he will rip into celebrity culture, social media, the police, Putin, Prince Andrew and Jesus in his new stand-up show, where nothing is off limits, from his mental health to his five arrests and his family.
Star of Channel 4’s Britain’s Greatest Hoaxer, Brodkin has pulled off headline-making stunts, from handing Theresa May a P45 during her Prime Minister’s speech at the Conservative Party Conference to showering disgraced FIFA president Sepp Blatter with bank notes.
From surrounding Donald Trump at the opening of his golf course with 60 swastika-emblazoned golf balls to attaching a 25ft sign to the side of Sir Philip Green’s super yacht, and going on Britain’s Got Talent as the ultra-orthodox Jewish rapper Steven Goldblatt – fooling Simon Cowell and the other judges to win four Yes votes.
“I have performed in York before,” says the 46-year-old Londoner. “It might well have been as my alter ego Lee Nelson and that’s why it’s exciting to be going to the big-time Grand Opera where you can’t just turn up. You have to bring your A-game. I might even sing.”
Lee Nelson was a “very useful” suit of armour for Simon. “It was the only way I could see myself being funny. That was my comedy, pretending to be him or pretending to be multiple characters, including for sketch shows for the BBC,” he says.
“It’s not brave, being a comedian, not like being a firefighter, but it did feel personally brave because I felt it was the most difficult thing I could do.”
Dropping the Lee Nelson front, the real Simon Brodkin will stand up at the Grand Opera House at 8pm on Saturday. Box office: atgtickets.com/york.