Comedy double act Little & Large are to reunite on stage in January, as part of a special event for Bristol’s Slapstick Festival.
Syd Little and Eddie Large – real names Cyril Mead and Edward McGinnis – started working together as pub singers in the 1960s, before deciding to concentrate on comedy routines. In 1971 they won talent show Opportunity Knocks, which kickstarted their TV careers.
Their biggest hit – sketch format The Little And Large Show – ran for twelve series across ITV and BBC1, from 1976 until 1991. At its height, the show was attracting 18 million viewers. The double-act split up in 2003, when Large required a heart transplant that stopped him working.
Speaking in an interview last year about how he now works at his wife’s restaurant, Little said of the end of their joint career: “We were 14 years on television, but after that you start to come down. You go to theatres and they’re half full and me and Eddie thought, ‘Hello, this is it’. Every act has its shelf life.”
Large revealed in an interview in 2010 that he had not spoken to Little for several years, however speaking to The Mirror last year, Little confirmed: “We call each other up nearly every day now ‘cos we’re like two old fellas. It’s amazing. We can’t not say we’ve had a great life and I’ve enjoyed every minute of it.”
The double act briefly appeared together earlier this year, for the first time since they split, in a pre-filmed sketch for Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway
Now the duo will appear as part of the 15th annual edition of the UK’s biggest celebration of silent and classic screen comedy, Bristol’s Slapstick Festival.
On Friday 19th January 2019, the duo will be interviewed by Matthew Sweet for the show An Audience With Little and Large: A Larger Than Life Story. The event’s programme explains: “Hear their unique showbiz story in their first onstage appearance together for decades and following their triumphant 2018 TV reunion on Ant & Dec’s Saturday Night Takeaway.”
An Audience With Little and Large is one of 32 events lined up for Slapstick 2019, which will run from January 16th to 20th at venues across Bristol. Other highlights are set to include The Goodies discussing their career; Richard Herring interviewing Tim Vine; and the writers of The Inbetweeners looking back at the hit sitcom as it approaches its 11th anniversary.
Festival Director Chris Daniels says: “As befits our 15th anniversary, this is our biggest Slapstick to date – a true celebration of silent, visual and classic comedy, featuring an impressive array of top comedy talent from many different decades, from the earliest days of cinema to current day favourites and with welcome contributions from some irrepressible veterans including festival stalwart Barry Cryer. A sure way to beat the winter blues. Don’t miss!”
Tickets for all Slapstick 2019 events are on sale now. For full details can be found on the festival’s website: www.slapstick.org.uk