NZICF 2013: Le Comique – Keep Calm and Comedy On

Le Comique

Le Comique is a riotous night of comedy with a bit of a twist.  Featuring an eclectic line up of mostly “oddball” acts, this is a great option for those who enjoy their comedy a bit on the quirky side.

This delectable variety show is co-hosted this year by boisterous ex-pat icons Jarred Christmas and Urzila Carlson and there couldn’t have been a more suitable pair to host the festivities.  From Urzila enlightening us on what “white people curry” is to Jarred’s amusing “true anecdote time”, this energetic duo easily kept the audience well and truly entertained throughout.  I particularly enjoyed the series of “joke offs” where they tried to best each other which in the end culminated with someone prancing around in a flashy red onesie!

With eight acts on the bill, your laughing muscles do get a bit of a workout!  In the first half, Vance Fontaine impressed with improvised songs about love and refrigerators and select audience members received scarily accurate tarot readings by gifted spirit “comedium” Ian D Montfort.  Then Clayton Carrick-Leslie entertained us with his John Key impersonation and a rant about the fine dining menus of today before things turn a little raunchy with some cheeky cabaret by the saucy ladies of Titty Bar Ha Ha.

Markus Birdman kicks off the second half with his brilliant style of witty sometimes controversial commentary followed by “Juan Vesuvius from Venezuela” whose bizarre interpretation of calypso music with maracas and audio tracks didn’t quite resonate with the audience.  James Acaster picked the energy back up with a hilarious set which included a crash course on the three types of mariachi  music and his aspirations to be a sky writer.  The evening ends on a high with crowd favorite The Boy With Tape On His Face who effortlessly enthralled us with his unique brand of silent comedy.

Le Comique is the perfect way to end the weekend and a nice halfway point in the comedy festival.  If you didn’t make it this year, I strongly recommend that you add this to your to-see list next year!

The Whimsical Banana rates Le Comique: 5/5 bananas!

Most of these acts are performing their solo shows this week.  Check out comedyfestival.co.nz for dates and tickets.

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NZICF 2013: Titty Bar Ha Ha

Titty Bar Ha HaTitty Bar Ha Ha – the name alone should grab your attention and get you curious enough to buy a ticket to find out more.  Sexy, bawdy and just a little wrong, this is the perfect late night rendezvous for those who like their cabaret a little blue.

Set in 1943 England during World War II, we meet Hope and Gloria, the “providers of pleasure” of Titty Bar Ha Ha, a burlesque bar they run.  We learn that they are hiding a very human, very dead secret in their basement which is causing some anxiety but this does not stop them from doing what they do best – entertain and deliver a rollicking good time!

Throughout the hour you can expect many a raunchy song and suggestive dance that will make you both giggle and blush.  The lyrics are incredibly audacious and unabashedly risqué with witty double entendres and are performed superbly with great conviction by this talented duo.  They have some serious vocal chops and they also do an impressive kazoo duet which was a clear crowd favorite.

Although Hope and Gloria love the attention and the spotlight, they also enjoy interacting with the crowd.  They mingle and flirt with the audience and be prepared to be picked to get involved in the shenanigans too, be it in a game of “spit or swallow” or an impromptu dance audition.  This is definitely not a show for the shy and reserved!

If songs about sex and masturbation make you uncomfortable then Titty Bar Ha Ha is probably not for you.  But if you don’t offend easy and are up for some high-end smut, this show has it in spades.  Be warned though: the songs are extremely catchy and you will find yourself humming the melodies the morning after.

The Whimsical Banana rates Titty Bar Ha Ha: 4/5 bananas!

Titty Bar Ha Ha is at The Basement for 4 more nights – May 15th to 18th at 10pm.  For tickets, click here.