Article Title:A crack up: 2014 Comedy Gala
Author or Credit:Jacqui Stanford
Published on:25th April 2014 - 11:13 am
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Story ID:14969
Text:Host Jason Byrne There seemed to be running themes of jokes about gays and bums at the Comedy Gala. But, thankfully, not together. In fact the gay community was far from the butt of the jokes, as a couple of straight comedians made fun of homophobes and offered some wicked comebacks – and a couple of gay favourites strutted their stuff. Kind of like a mass speed audition where some of the big acts at the New Zealand International Comedy Festival get a chance to woo prospective audiences, the three hours show really packs it in. The bum jokes started with Irish comedian Jason Byrne, who had a bit about itchy bums which went on through the whole show, and no doubt had a few people wiggling in their seats. Rhys Darby got in on the act too, with a bit about skinny jeans which was butt-heavy. But arses aside, the Gala was also punctuated by something akin to a gay rights revival. With marriage equality fresh in the UK, John Gordillo had the audience in stitches explaining how he explained that a married gay couple was coming to dinner to his rather conservative Spanish father. That was topped off by Kiwi living in the UK, Jarred Christmas, brilliantly re-enacting the dressing down he gave to a homophobic former classmate. Urzila Carlson As for the gay act themselves, Urzila Carlson had the crowd in the palm of her hand in her all too short four minutes on stage, with a quick taste of her latest show Poise Control, which is a likely sell out once more. Stephen K Amos and his smooth deadpan style was another highlight of the gala, with a final punchline which will have gay men nodding and giggling in amused agreement. The saucy Marcel Lucont was a stand-out, with his hilariously French wine-sipping smooth take on the world, and the UK’s Sara Pascoe proved she is really one to watch with a Russell Brand-like irreverence. The Comedy Gala screens on TV3 on Monday night at 8.30PM so you can check it out for yourself. Stephen K Amos There is also a delicious glut of glbti-interest shows in the festival once again. Carlson and Amos are of course doing solo shows, as is comedy luminary Julian Clary. Gay favourite Penny Ashton is bringing Austen to the festival with Promise and Promiscuity and fresh faced comedian to watch Eli Matthewson has a show called ‘Big Audition’, Up-and-comer Becky Crouch, one of the standouts of last year’s Raw Comedy Quest, is in a group show Rule of Three. The Raw Comedy Quest is also one to watch, with gay Christchurch wit Thane Pullan in the finals – as is the one and only Suzanne Paul! Find full NZ International Comedy Festival information and buy tickets here Jacqui Stanford - 25th April 2014    
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