Page last updated at 18:54 GMT, Monday, 11 May 2009 19:54 UK

Theatre declines Ken Dodd booking

Ken Dodd
Ken Dodd has not had the booking at Nottingham confirmed

Comedian Ken Dodd has not been booked for his annual show in Nottingham after concerns about last year's show, say theatre managers.

His provisional booking for the Christmas show at the Royal Concert Hall was not confirmed.

Dodd's agent, Robert Holmes, said it was an insult to a legend who had played the venue for over 50 years and had disappointed the performer.

Theatre managers said some people left before the end of last year's show.

Royal Concert Hall managing director Robert Sanderson said: "Following Ken Dodd's performance in December 2008, a decision was made not to confirm his provisional booking for December 2009.

FROM THE PM PROGRAMME

"Following the Ken Dodd Show on 27 December 2008, a significant number of audience members left before the end, raising concerns to our manager on the night as to the quality of some of the performances within the show.

"The management team therefore took the difficult decision to give this long-running and much-loved show a break during 2009."

He said no decision had been made for future visits to the centre for next year and beyond, and added: "Ken Dodd has a long and illustrious history of performing at both the Royal Concert Hall and the Theatre Royal Nottingham and is by no means 'banned' from appearing at either venue."

Agent Robert Holmes said Dodd deserved better treatment and the people of Nottingham were the ones missing out.

He said: "How can you say that man's not funny?

"He's a legend, and this is an insult to a legend.

"I am absolutely and totally disappointed for the man that he's had to listen to this sort of thing and read about this sort of thing.

"How can the theatre turn its back on a man who is a box office certainty?

"They're talking about a show last year that attracted 2,224 people into that theatre which is the biggest audience that Ken's ever had and he's played it for 55 years."

Mr Holmes said Dodd was "very disappointed" and he felt for the people of Nottingham.



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