Over the years, disabled comedian Lauren Clark has performed in some strange venues, and in a recent blog he describes the time when he was approached to open a Conservative party event – as a warm-up act for David Cameron.
Back in 2006, not long after ‘Dave’ became leader of the Tory party, Clark received an email inviting him to perform at a seminar on future disability policy. Basically they wanted the comedian to do ten minutes of comedy and then pose for the press with their new leader. Clark’s assumption was that this was part of an attempt to make Dave look more “diverse”.
However, not only were the tight-fisted Tories unwilling to pay him for his troubles, they weren’t even prepared to cover his travel and access expenses (perhaps this was an early pilot for the Tories’ current “voluntary” work scheme!).
But Clark couldn’t leave it there and recalls: “So I emailed back my agent at the time, saying I’d still do it anyway as – and these were my exact words – it was “a golden opportunity to piss off the Tories.” But just as I hit the ‘Send’ button, I felt a sinking feeling in the pit of my stomach. This was down to my sudden realisation that I’d accidentally selected ‘Reply to All’ and directly emailed Tory Party HQ too. Needless to say, I got a swift response saying my services were no longer required. I can’t for the life of me think why!”