REVIEW: Brynley Stent & Rhiannon McCall: “Why Does This Feel So Good?” (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 17, 2018
[Bad Education] Playing exaggerated versions of themselves, Brynley Stent and Rhiannon McCall use high school sexual education as the subject of their comedy show. Treating us as a high school students, the evening is structured simply but effectively (Puberty, Sex, Birth, Sexuality and Gender Equality), though often derailing itself with comedic asides and character drama to great effect. While the […]

REVIEW: Alice Snedden: Self Titled: Volume II (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 17, 2018
[A Room of her Own] Billy T nominee Alice Snedden serves up a platter of anecdotes and observations that will have you in stitches. Loosely tied by the “problem” of her unflinching confidence, we are taken on a wild ride down memory lane, covering past and recent events that have made Snedden who she is today. Despite being unfamiliar with […]

REVIEW: Chris Parker: Camp Binch (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 12, 2018
[Nostalgia Extravaganza] Chris Parker has mastered the art of self-deprecation and personal storytelling, taking the audience on an emotional detour through his childhood. Camp Binch is a brilliant underdog story of growing up in Christchurch, not just as a gay kid, but also simply as an outsider. Equipped with a ridiculous wig and a black sequin backdrop, Parker skillfully avoids […]

REVIEW: Eli Matthewson: An Inconvenient Poof (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 12, 2018
[Low-Fat Agitprop] Eli Matthewson’s latest show manoeuvres through the tricky and confusing world of ethical living, as he strives to be the best activist he can be. It’s a pressing question in our current time, particularly for our generation. Playing to the audience with just the right amount of charm and confidence, Matthewson effortlessly delivers his material, consistently hitting those […]

REVIEW: Leon Wadham: Giddy (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 10, 2018
[Sisyphus Smiles] An ecstatic delight, Leon Wadham’s Giddy is like a hot knife in butter, cutting through all the standup in the festival and making itself known. That’s not to discredit or undervalue the talent required for conventional forms of comedy writing, but there’s something special about a show so unashamedly kooky as Giddy is. Structured as a series of […]

REVIEW: Phil Wang (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 10, 2018
[Patriotasian] Phil Wang doesn’t describe himself as a minority, despite his Asian appearance. Instead, he suggests he’s two majorities (Chinese-Malaysian and British), due to his bi-racial heritage. It’s a funny subversion, but also a telling one. Ideologically, Wang plays almost a devil’s advocate to first-world progressivism, poking fun at liberal tendencies without ever resorting to ad hominem attacks or betraying […]

REVIEW: Aunty (NZ International Comedy Festival)

May 3, 2018
[Cat on a Hot Tinnie Roof] Invited as extended family of Johanna Cosgrove’s titular Aunty, the audience act as guests and onlookers to the party at hand. It’s a recognisably bare celebration, featuring bags of chips, a box cask of wine, bikkies and whipped cream. Though essentially plotless, she weaves bawdy anecdotes and personal observations with a confidence and energy […]

REVIEW: Uther Dean: My Fat/Sad (NZ International Comedy Festival)

April 28, 2018
[2 for 1] A consummate craftsmen, Uther Dean’s writing glows with a self-awareness and wit that is rare in standup. It doesn’t always make for the most obviously funny jokes, but there’s a cleverness that is inarguable. Essentially two shows wrapped in one, Dean opens the first half with Fat and then finishes off with Sad. There’s a neatness to […]

REVIEW: Eamonn Marra: Dignity (NZ International Comedy Festival)

April 28, 2018
[Reaffirm] Eamonn Marra’s Respite was one of my theatrical highlights a few years back, a profoundly resonant hour of personal storytelling informed by depression and anxiety but often diffused with gentle, observational comedy. If the previous show was about his struggle with his mental health, Dignity concerns itself with the question of what happens next. But, while his life and […]

REVIEW: WEiRdO (The Basement)

April 21, 2018
[Minority Report] This is an office space where tokenistic cultural gestures are used to tick boxes. Where the line between appropriation and appreciation is blurred. Where microaggressions lurk around every corner. For some people this will never be a concern; for the rest of us, it’s a reality. WEiRdO, created by Waylon Edwards, William Duignan and Jane Yonge, is a […]
1 2 3 4 9