Alan Davies was born in Chingford (1966). His childhood years were spent in Chingford and Loughton, where he was raised by his father; after his mother passed away, when he was only 6. Alan graduated from the University of Kent in 1988. These formative years were documented, in his 3 part programme on channel Four ‘Alan Davies’ Teenage Revolution’ (2010).
Stand Up Comedy
Alan Davies began performing stand up comedy in 1988, with a three month trip across Canada performing at various Fringe Festivals and Comedy Clubs; only five months after leaving university. The stress of performing to Canadians prepared him for his return to England, and he secured a TV spot within six months.
In 1991, he was named Time Out’s ‘Best Young Comic’. He soon appeared on ‘Tonight with Jonathan Ross’ in 1992, and continued touring and performing in the UK and Canada. Winning the Edinburgh Festival ‘Critics Award for Comedy’ in 1994. Alan’s most successful stand up tour was his show ‘Urban Trauma’, which completed a sell out season at the Duchess Theatre in 1998.
Alan had always been interested in straight acting and for a while he moved into serious drama. In 2004, he starred as Henry Farmer a maverick barrister, in the ITV Sunday night drama ‘The Brief’. Although he quit after the second series.
His theatre debut was in Morris Panych’s ‘Auntie & Me’. The production was a sell out success at the 2002 Edinburgh Festival, and transferred to the West End in 2003. Alan returned to the stage in 2005, this time along side Bill Bailey as Felix in ‘The Odd Couple’, again at the Ed Fringe.
However it was his lead role in David Renwick’s (BAFTA award winning) comedy/drama ‘Jonathan Creek’, that made him really well known to a wider public, outside of comedy. There he played a ‘trick deviser’ for a stage magician, with a side interest in solving crimes. The series ran from 1996 until 2003, picking up a BAFTA for Best Drama. The series earned Alan a large following of loyal fans and it has been exported to several countries.
Alan Davies has also appeared in many drama series; ‘Bob & Rose’, ‘Miss Marple’, ‘Hotel Babylon’ and in ‘Whites’. The latter where he played a head chef, was one of his favourite roles and comedy dramas. Unfortunately the show was cancelled after one series which upset Alan.
Along side his acting work, since 2003 he has appeared as a permanent panellist, on the BBC TV comedy panel quiz show ‘QI’, hosted by Stephen Fry. This interesting format, where most of the questions are extremely obscure, making it unlikely that the correct answer will be given – has kept Alan very much in the public eye.
Life in General
In January 2007 he got married to Kate Maskell. His good friend Bill Bailey, was chosen as his best man at the wedding. Alan is a huge fan of Arsenal Football Club and is a regular at all their home matches. He’s big on Twitter, produces an Arsenal podcast called ‘It’s Up For Grabs Now’, and has written a book called ‘My Favourite People and Me 1978-1988’.
He returned to stand up in 2012, with his successful tour ‘Life is Pain’.
So Book Alan Davies Today!
Matthew Willetts MA is the Director of Comicus who has over 35 years experience in television, film, theatre, and comedy club/cabaret entertainment, working as a performer, screenwriter, producer and agent. He lectured at Southampton Solent University in Comedy, Screenwriting, Television, Theatre & Radio. Matthew can sometimes be seen and heard on TV & Radio and often quoted in the national press and media publications. As well as speaking regularly at festivals and industry conferences, he has been a judge at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and the Montreux Television Festival.
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