TO many, Justin Moorhouse is best known as Young Kenny, the one with the permanent painted tiger face from Peter Kay’s cult hit sitcom Phoenix Nights.

But he’s also one of the country’s most talented and funny stand-up comics, described by Jimmy Carr as “easily my favourite comedian”.

The 47-year-old Mancunian is coming to the Black Country on Saturday, February 17 to perform on the latest ‘Live At The Civic’ bill at Brierley Hill Civic Hall.

It will be the first time the keen Manchester United fan has ever performed, or even been to Dudley properly – but he said he was looking forward to it.

“I’ve never gigged locally,” he said. “The only time I’ve ever visited is when I’ve been diverted off from the M6.

“It seemed nice. But at 2am in the morning, if I’m honest, I just wished I was on my way home.

“Any venue with a full house is brilliant. I’ve heard we’ve sold loads of tickets for this night so far, so I’m really looking forward to it.”

Sales have been strong, almost 500 tickets have been snapped up for the show – a double headline bill also featuring one-liner king Gary Delaney, as seen recently on Live At The Apollo and a regular on Mock The Week.

But there are still a few left for the latest instalment of the popular night, which has seen the likes of Ross Noble, Joe Lycett, Seann Walsh, Tom Stade and Doc Brown perform on stage since July 2016.

Justin first started performing stand-up nearly 20 years ago after trying a myriad of other jobs, including roles as a salesman and a chef.

His first gig was at Manchester’s famous Frog and Bucket comedy club – and he still rates it as his best to this day.

He said: “It’s hard to say really what your best ever gig was, after doing so many.

“But I suppose the best one was the first one. If I hadn’t done that then, I’d not be doing this job that I love now.”

And his worst?

“Millennium Eve. Nottingham,” he said. “Stupid idea to do a character act. 200 annoyed East Midlanders. Didn’t get paid.”

But back to the early days, after that first gig Justin started to catch the eye in comedy clubs around Manchester and caught the biggest break of his career when he was cast as Young Kenny in Phoenix Nights.

Dudley News:

The sitcom was a massive success, but does it frustrate him that it’s still the main thing people want to talk to him about, 15 years after it was last aired?

“Not at all,” he says quickly. “I’m very proud to have played a small part in such a massive success. I’ll never be ashamed or bored of it, it was a wonderful help up the ladder.

“Yes, I was incredibly lucky early on to get the part of Young Kenny in Phoenix Nights.

“It gave me a big dollop of confidence and helped get me though doors of comedy clubs I’d probably have to have been knocking on for years.

“Thing is with getting a break, you have to take it and do something with it.”

And he certainly has. TV stand-up appearances on both Live At The Apollo and Michael McIntyre’s Comedy Roadshow have followed. Justin also appeared alongside his idol Eric Cantona in the film Looking for Eric and won Celebrity Mastermind, where his specialist subject was Les Dawson.

Dudley News:

He has presented programmes on commercial radio, written in and starred in a Radio Four sitcom and even appeared in a couple of episodes of Corrie, where he played rival landlord Dean.

So what’s next for Justin Moorhouse?

He said: “I’m writing my next Edinburgh show at the moment, and we’ll be taking it out on tour after that.

“But I always keep my eyes and ears open for opportunities, so I’ll pop up on the telly again at some point.”

Tickets for ‘Live At The Civic’ cost £15 each and are available from or by calling Brierley Hill Civic Hall on 01384 573381.