Mat Ricardo is one of Europe’s most in-demand comedy variety performers.
"Immensely skilled and very funny"
– Time Out
"A thoroughly entertaining show that kept us on the edge of our seats"
– Broadway Baby ★★★★
The Gentleman Juggler, leading speciality act of the British cabaret revival and the UK’s most successful juggler, presents big laughs, serious skills, slapstick, and breathtaking spectacle. Mat presents genuine danger, dexterous elegance, and thrills, performed by a man at the top of his game.
Since helping to spearhead the resurgence of new circus and variety in the late 1980’s, Mat has gone on to headline theatres across Europe, appear at countless international variety and comedy festivals, and on some of the finest cabaret and burlesque stages in the world. He has entertained corporate clients too numerous to mention, as well as members of the Royal Family.
"He is charming and impeccably dressed, he has incredible skills and an admirable respect for the craft from which he now makes his living. Mat Ricardo is a Gentleman Juggler. And very witty with it...a funny, impressive, always entertaining show,..If you like your comedy with skills and more than a little genuine risk of amputation, try Mat Ricardo" – Kate Copstick, The Scotsman ★★★★
Alongside his prolific live work as both performer and director, he has made many high profile television appearances, most notably as a regular cast member on three series of ITV1’s “Moment of Truth”, and as a special guest on BBC1’s “The Slammer”. More recently he was the first variety performer to be invited as a guest on ITV1’s “The Jonathan Ross Show”, performed and talked about variety on “The Alan Titchmarsh Show”, is the star of the famous “Unum tablecloth trick” TV ad campaign, and appeared on new primetime BBC1 Magic Show 'Now Your See It'.
"Relentless hilarious, jaw-dropping fun…Ricardo’s smooth wit drives the show at full speed. The actual tricks are as stunning for their mastery as for their ingenious conception. You’ll struggle to find a show more tightly packed with cunning humour and spellbinding amusement" – ER Magazine
With his first one man show, 2011’s “Three Balls and a new Suit”, he became the first ever cabaret artist to win the Herald Angel award for excellence in theatre.
"Utterly gobsmacking …surpassed all expectations and went down an absolute storm" – Mark Tattersall, Dorchester Corn Exchange
As one of the busiest acts on the European cabaret scene, he was named Best Speciality Act in the inaugural British Cabaret Awards, along with receiving a nomination for Best Overall Show. That same year, his second one man show “Vaudeville Schmuck” played to a sell-out run in London and received five star reviews at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe.
"It takes more than dexterity to bring this timeless art to the forefront. It takes dazzling showmanship, spot-on comic timing and bucket-loads of style. It takes Mat Ricardo" – ER Magazine
His critically acclaimed and award-nominated West End “London Varieties” project mixed legendary names from the world of light-entertainment with some of the hottest young variety and circus acts, and consolidated his position at the forefront of the British variety revival.
"This circus star is a unique and unmissable showman" – EdFest Mag
"Probably the best juggler you will ever see" – What’s On Stage
"As a dapperly dressed gentleman juggler, his props include cigar boxes, snooker cues, silverware and – in a signature trick – tablecloths. His dexterity is captivating, whether he’s sending coloured bottles spinning like fireworks or manipulating a hat, cane and wine glass in an elegant routine that borders on dance – one of several bits perfectly timed to a musical track." – The Scotsman
His hour long show “Showman”, which premièred at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe in '13, and returned due to huge public demand in 2014, received some of the best reviews of his career, completed a week-long sell-out London West End run, was invited back for a three date run at the London Mime Festival 2015, and is touring now nationally and internationally.
Don't have time to see all of Mat Ricardo's critically-acclaimed one man show "Showman"? Fine! Here's the whole thing in less than a minute and a half. Without the jokes. So, actually, you're probably better off just going to see him on tour….. ;)
Mat is Chortle's new Cabaret Correspondent, writing a monthly piece about Variety from his perspective. His first article is available here
"A minor legend... We left feeling rather richer to have spent an hour basking in his warm and commanding presence"
– Total Theatre
" categorically one of the best shows I have ever seen. If you have the opportunity to go and see this show, you should totally, completely 100% go see it. In fact, stop reading this review and go book a ticket now…a show that has you going from the edge of your seat one moment, to roaring with laughter, and then straight back to tension! quite incredible." – Arts Award Voice
"real aplomb, terrific humour and genuine skill. This showman deserves your applause." – The Guardian
Stay up to date with Mat's latest shows and tours here, and his adventures on our news page