According to prophecy, Laurence Owen will one day become a millionaire.
That's if we can believe the implied prediction of the Malcolm Hardee award the musical comedian received at the Edinburgh Fringe last August. Crowned as "Act Most Likely To Make A Million Quid" for his popular show Cinemusical, Owen follows in the footsteps of the likes of Trevor Noah; a still relatively unknown comedian when he scooped the award in 2013 and who now, of course, hosts The Daily Show.
Comedy connoisseur John Fleming — with the help of other experienced comedy scouts — judges the awards but went a little further than just bestowing a trophy on the act. During the Fringe he remarked on his popular blog: “Cinemusical, as performed by Laurence Owen, is one of the best shows I have seen in 30 years of going to the Fringe.”
Fleming has since added, "There was not really much discussion, as soon as anyone saw Cinemusical, they were blown away with his talent.”
Apparently unsatisfied with being good at one thing, Owen is also good at all the others. Infuriatingly talented, he combines comedy, composition and song into a one-hour, one-man show. And, Cinemusical is indeed remarkable. It's a journey through popular genres of film which parodies the limitations of stock Hollywood characters, while all the time set to an amusing but unnervingly accurate movie score.
Now Owen plays his way into the Freedom Bar on Wardour Street for three dates from next week.
Prior to finding comedy had an open door to the work he was developing, Owen had already gained recognition, winning a Früh Kölsch Audience Award in 2013 for a short film soundtrack. More recently he was nominated for Best Theatre Sound at the Pro Sound Awards for his work on The Golem.
So, while the rest of us rummage through overflowing drawers for a lost lottery ticket, it seems Owen may become a millionaire entirely on merit. In the meantime, at least by seeing him now we have the small consolation of saying we saw him before he was famous.
Laurence Owen: Cinemusical plays Freedom Bar, Wardour Street, Soho, on 22, 25 & 28 February, 7.30pm, £10. Buy tickets for Cinemusical here.