Last year’s winner of Britain’s biggest talent contest will take to Norden Farm’s stage this November as part of his comedy tour.
Lee Ridley- who is famously known as Lost Voice Guy- won the 2018 series of Britain’s Got Talent and is continuing his success with an extended UK tour.
The new performance dates, added by popular demand following Mr Ridley’s sell-out spring tour, span October and November and include venues in Exeter, Liverpool, Bath, and Maidenhead.
Lee said: “The show seems to be shaping up nicely and I can’t wait to get back out on the road.
“The first tour earlier this year was so much fun to do, so I’m hoping that the autumn tour will be just as good.”
The performer- who is the first comedian to win the ITV talent show- delivers a unique act which involves the use of a communication aid.
And Mr Ridley is not shy of addressing this disability in his content. He said: “My Tour show will be a typical Lost Voice Guy show, it’ll be cheeky, mischievous and, most of all, very funny.
“I think my show this year is definitely a reflection on what has happened to me since I won Britain’s Got Talent in 2018.
“Ever since winning the ITV show, I’ve had people coming up to me and congratulating me, which is great. But I’ve also had almost the same amount of people coming up to me and asking me stupid questions about my disability. So I’m using my time on tour to answer all of these for you.”
Lee added: “I think the question that I’m sick of being asked the most is definitely ‘are you as clever as Stephen Hawking?’ Spoiler alert, I’m not.”
Mr Ridley will also perform alongside supporting comedy act Jonny Awsum who was a semi-finalist in the 2017 series of Britain’s Got Talent.
Hinting at what audiences can expect from his tour, Lee said: “My tour is an extension of my book, I’m Only In It For The Parking and it’s all about the questions I get asked about my disability.
“For example, one of the most common questions I get is ‘have I ever tried to talk just to see what would happen?’. Like I was only putting it on to take advantage and jump the queues at Disney world.
“But, in case you are wondering, no I haven’t tried to talk before. Mainly because I know nothing would happen.”
Referencing one of Wokingham’s well-loved figures, Lee added: “I’m not going to suddenly open my mouth and hear Brian Blessed’s voice booming out. Besides, I’ve built a career out of not being able to speak now. I don’t think I should be encouraging my voice to magically reappear too much.
“The found voice guy just doesn’t have the same ring to it.”
Since performing his first stand-up gig in 2012, Lost Voice Guy has appeared at festivals including Edinburgh Fringe and Brighton Fringe, as well as featuring on TV shows The One Show, This Morning, and Lorraine.
The comedian said: “One of the best things to happen since I won, is that people are engaging with me a lot more than they would have in the past.
“For the first time, they seem comfortable talking to a disabled person. I’m used to being stared at for negative reasons, so it’s nice to be stared at for positive reasons for a change.
“It’s just a shame that I had to win a talent show to get to this point. For most disabled people, this isn’t an option.”
And as well as winning Britain’s Got Talent, the comedian won the BBC New Comedy Award in 2014 and has supported top comedy acts across the country.
He said: “My most memorable performance to date was supporting the comedian Ross Noble. It was a very big deal for me as I’ve been a fan of his for about twenty years now and he’s a bit of a hero to me.
“It meant the world to me when he asked me to warm up for him at his Newcastle show. It was especially good because the show was taking place at my favourite comedy venue, The Stand Comedy Club in Newcastle. Everything was perfect.
“That was a really proud moment for me.”
In the past twelve months Lost Voice Guy has performed for the Duke and Duchess of Sussex on The Royal Variety Show, appeared on Live At The Apollo, America’s Got Talent: The Champions and the New Year edition of The Last Leg. He also starred in and co-wrote the second series of his popular radio sitcom, Ability.
Describing the creative process of his material, Lee said: “Whenever I think of an idea for a joke, I’ll make a note of it in my phone and then eventually I’ll develop that idea into an actual joke.
“Admittedly, not all my ideas turn out to be funny ones and sometimes I forget what the note means at all. So I have loads of random words written in my phone and I have no idea what they relate to.”
He added: “Sadly comedians don’t get the opportunity to practice really. The only way to try out a new bit of material is in front of an audience.
“This means that you have to make sure it’s at least good enough to be told in public, when you’re writing it.”
“It’s a very harsh way to get feedback but it’s the only way that works.”
Outside of his performing career, Mr Ridley is also an ambassador for several charities including Scope, Find A Voice, and Communication Matters.
He said: “I’m proud to support these charities as obviously communication and communication devices are very close to me.
“I literally wouldn’t have a voice without people such as those who have supported me throughout my life so it’s nice to be in a position where I can support them now as well.
“If I can encourage other people in a similar situation to me to follow their dreams, then that’s great.”
And Lee also believes that his victory on Britain’s Got Talent could signal a positive future for the disabled community. He said: “Obviously winning the show is something that I’m very proud of and meant a great deal to me. I’d like to think that it’s pushed the barriers a bit further certainly.
“When I was growing up, I never really had any disabled role models on my television screen, which probably made it harder for me.
“I think it’s very important that there’s more representation of disabled people in the media.”
The Lost Voice Guy UK tour will be performed at Norden Farm, Maidenhead on Tuesday, November 12 at 8pm. For more information or to book call the box office on 01628 788 997 or log on to norden.farm
On a final note, Lee joked: “Why should people come and see the show? Because I need the money to buy myself a new Geordie accent for my iPad.”