Review of 'Bill Bailey: En Route to Normal'

Bill Bailey


I have seen Bill Bailey before when he played in London but when a friend offered tickets to his “En Route to Normal” show in Liverpool (and since I have recently moved to the area) we had to see him again and we are very glad we did. Bailey had postponed the original date of January 8 to May 8 due to the rising number of Covid cases and, as luck would have it, this worked perfectly for us.

The show was in held in one half of the M&S Bank Arena on the Mersey but even at that there were about 5,000 fans in attendance with very few seats empty. Some were wearing masks but most were not. We had absolutely brilliant tickets only a few rows from the front of the stage on the ground but, of course, there were large screens on either side of the stage and behind it so everyone could see what was going on. I do have to say our seats were quite cramped together which was awkward considering the pandemic when you are next to someone you don't know.

You would think with what is mostly a comedy show there would not be a lot happening on the massive stage but you would be wrong – Bailey had instruments set up all around the place which he would return to time and time again throughout the evening.


The show started just after 8 pm and ended shortly after 10 pm with a brief interval meaning that Bailey was on the stage for the best part of 2 hours and the time flew by as he regaled the audience with numerous pokes at Boris Johnson and other political figures with interludes of instrumental performance demonstrating his considerable skills as a musician. Bailey is not afraid to make fun of himself or the music which kept the audience in stitches throughout. The lights and visual effects were quite amazing and really “went to town”. It felt like a special occasion to everyone and it was much appreciated by the audience.

There were a few things that fans will have seen before such as his playing of rock anthems on horns and hand bells, or playing with the Theremin in quirky ways (always as a punch line to a joke). Here he also had keyboard, synthesiser, piano, banjo, various guitars (electric and otherwise), and “Bali Steel Pan”. Mixing between the comedy and music kept the audience interested and on their toes.

A wonderful return to the stage for Bill Bailey with a warming and fun performance in Liverpool.

Rating: “Nearly perfect, but not quite”

Review Date: 2022-05-05

M&S Bank Arena

Location: Liverpool (England)

Address: King's Dock, Port of Liverpool, 16 Monarchs Quay, Liverpool L3 4FP ENGLAND


Located on the Mersey just south of Albert Dock this massive arena plays hosts to many large entertainment events. Food and facilities are as you might expect with nothing particularly notable…