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Facilitators of Mirth

Jamie MacDonald

Biography

Jamie MacDonald

Awards & competitions

Jamie MacDonald

Appearances & credits

Jamie MacDonald

Biography

Jamie MacDonald is a Glaswegian stand-up comedian, writer and voiceover artist, who is also blind

MacDonald’s blindness flavours his comedy but doesn’t define it. That said, he has found that his disability allows him to extract comedy from lesser explored areas; like the jealousy he feels towards laboratory mice with 20/20 vision.

"Pure wit and confidence”
– ★★★★The Skinny

 

Jamie started losing his sight in his early teens when he was diagnosed with Retinitis Pigmentosa (RP), a progressive degenerative retinal disease. Yet as he says; “It’s easy to find the misery in disability; it’s much more interesting to find the fun in it”.

"a performer of great warmth and wit.. When a routine becomes more niche and personal, he paints a vivid portrait, lack of sight being no barrier to imagination”
– The List

 

Despite his prognosis, Jamie completed an Ancient History degree at St. Andrews University and a Law degree at Aberdeen University and became a corporate banker for Bank of Scotland in London.  Whilst there Jamie succumbed to the pull of the stage and gave his first performance at an open mic night at the Comedy Café in Shoreditch. After playing a small role in bringing down the Bank of Scotland he quit his banking career, and took up comedy full-time.

He debuted his first one man show That Funny Blind Guy at the Laughing Horse at the 2013 Edinburgh Festival Fringe; Assembly then picked him up and he’s performed with them ever since, for a further five years. Jamie can be seen on stage at comedy clubs all around the UK, including The Glee, The Stand and The Comedy Store. Jamie has also successfully toured Scotland with his fringe show, Designated Driver, in 2019.

"Consistently hilarious.. MacDonald has an informal and easygoing charm that makes even the most edgy of jokes seem like lighthearted banter, managing to take the edge off his more risky lines.. a consistently hilarious show from a performer who has the audience in the palm of his hand”
– Ed Fest Magazine

 

"well-crafted hour of storytelling and stand-up, performed in front of a receptive crowd. The majority of the set is a fascinating multi-sensory glimpse into the life of a blind man, and the challenges he faces on a daily basis. In the end, MacDonald does reveal a vulnerable side – one that relies on society’s compassion, even if it is overbearing and contrived. But as a performer, he is able to embrace all this and turn it on its head, through his naturally funny and endearing comedy”
– ★★★★Fringe Guru

 

In 2017 Jamie was named on the BBC New Talent Hotlist as well as reaching the semi-finals of the BBC New Comedy Award. His credits include Breaking The News (BBC Scotland/BBC Radio Scotland), Socially Distant With Susan Calman (BBC Scotland), The Comedy Underground (BBC Scotland), Fred At The Stand (BBC Radio 4) and Rosie Jones: Box Ticker (BBC Radio 4). His acting credits include The Scotts (BBC Scotland) and Scot Squad (BBC Scotland).

He’s featured on Radio 4’s Fred at the Stand: BBC Scotland’s Comedy Underground and in March became the first ever blind comedian to appear on a TV panel show – ‘Breaking the News’. Jamie was invited to speak at the world famous Oxford Student Union, and performs at numerous corporate and private events each year.

 

 

 

 

 

 

"the perfect choice of compere for our event on genetic eye conditions, where we shared research updates from clinical ophthalmologists and genetic researchers from the MRC Human Genetics Unit, University of Edinburgh.. Jamie was an inspired addition.. brilliant. We look forward to working with Jamie again."
– Dee Davison, Institute of Genetics and Cancer

 

"Jamie brought down the house with a routine that was hilarious, poignant, and thoroughly bloody funny. I have since gone back and booked him twice for other events and he always delivers."
– Ian Clark, Viavi Solutions

 

"We are constantly searching for something different for our major national sporting charity events which always comprises a huge diverse audience including large company CEOs and their guests. Jamie had the whole audience totally bewitched with a routine that was hilarious, poignant and side splitting.. We are not surprised that Jamie is gaining so much fame on BBC radio and TV. Jamie is back again with us in 2021 for the 4th time which probably says it all."
– Gary Welsh, Soskitaid

 

Jamie MacDonald found out during lockdown that the devil does not, it turns out, make work for idle hands; he makes pies and pints. In the first eight weeks of the coronavirus crisis lockdown in the UK, Jamie ate and drank heartily, and put on 10 kilograms. His mental health might have suffered too, but he was too drunk to notice.

Deciding enough was enough, he enlisted the help of Fran and John of FSR Personal Training to get back on track. His podcast series, '10 Lockdown Kilos and Friends' charts his progress, from one weigh in to the next. Along the way Jamie speaks to some of his comedian friends about life, lockdown and forced unemployment, and its available to listen to, here.

Later in 2021, Jamie teamed up with Jamie O'Leary, on the documentary 'Blind Ambition' for BBC2. Exploring how people cope with sight loss, and how blind artists achieve their creative vision of a world they see from a unique perspective, the duo brought light and shade to facing the condition. A 'blind-leading-the-nearly-blind' mission to uncover and collaborate with the best blind creative talent, which received rave reviews;

“Nimbly Unserious” – ★★★★ The Times
Review of BBC2 documentary, Blind Ambition. Full review here

 

“an illuminating take on blindness and creativity, as well as a candid look at the psychological effects of being visually impaired” – ★★★★ The Guardian
Review of BBC2 documentary, Blind Ambition. Full review here

 

“gloriously funny” – ★★★★ The Telegraph
Review of BBC2 documentary, Blind Ambition. Full review here

 

Jamie is a prolific writer, and has penned numerous articles for national newspapers, such as the articles 'Here’s what it’s like being blind in time of coronavirus' and 'Being blind hasn’t stopped me finding a career I love' for The Glasgow Times, and 'We're happy to call each other blinkies and wheelies' for The List.

As well as comedy Jamie is a professional voice over artist voicing ads for Tennants; the Scottish Government; and narrated the prime time BBC documentary ‘Without Limits’.

Awards/Competitions

  • Semi-Finalist - BBC New Comedy Award, 2017
  • Listed - BBC Hot Talent, 2017

Appearances & credits

Festivals:

  • Scottish Tour - 'Designated Driver', 2019
  • Edinburgh Festival Fringe - 'Blinkered', 2018
  • Edinburgh Festival Fringe - 'Designated Driver', 2017
  • Edinburgh Festival Fringe - 'Hi Vis', 2016
  • Edinburgh Festival Fringe - 'Oblivious', 2015
  • Edinburgh Festival Fringe - 'That Funny Blind Guy', 2014

Radio:

  • BBC Radio 4 Series 'Life on the Blink', April 2021
  • Fred At The Stand, BBC Radio 4
  • Rosie Jones: Box Ticker, BBC Radio 4
  • Breaking The News, BBC Radio Scotland
  • Good Morning Scotland, BBC Radio Scotland

Television & film:

  • Blind Ambition, BBC2, 2021
  • Raiders of the Lost Archive, BBC Scotland, 2020
  • Socially Distant With Susan Calman, BBC Scotland
  • The Comedy Underground, BBC Scotland
  • Breaking The News, BBC Scotland
  • Sanjeev Kohli's Big Talk, BBC Scotland
  • Scot Squad, BBC Scotland
  • The Scotts, BBC Scotland

Currently appearing at:

Jamie performs regularly at The Glee Clubs, The Stand, The Comedy Store and many more

Gag Reflex looks after Jamie for his live, touring and corporate work.

Please direct all TV, Radio, Writing, and Acting enquiries to Andrew Roach Talent  / 0208 3156533 / info@andrewroachtalent.com 

Writing credits

  • BBC2 Documentary 'Blind Ambition', August 2021
  • BBC Radio 4 Series 'Life on the Blink', April 2021
  • Article - The Glasgow Times, April 2020
  • Article - The Glasgow Times, January 2020
  • Article - The List, July 2018
  • Edinburgh Festival Fringe Show - 'Blinkered', 2018
  • Article - British Comedy Guide, August 2017
  • Edinburgh Festival Fringe Show - 'Designated Driver', 2017
  • Edinburgh Festival Fringe Show - 'Hi Vis', 2016
  • Edinburgh Festival Fringe Show - 'Oblivious', 2015
  • Edinburgh Festival Fringe Show - 'That Funny Blind Guy', 2014
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