Sunday, 23 May 2021

New Zealand Comedy Festival 2021

The New Zealand International Comedy Festival takes place in Auckland and Wellington during May each year. Well, most years. 2020 was obviously an exception. The festival kicks off with a gala evening where local and (usually) international comedians put forward four minute samplers of what's to come during their festival shows. Last year's gala evening happened later in the year and featured an almost exclusively local lineup. This year's show had a few more internationals who had either moved her shortly before the pandemic or simply decided to sit it out in relatively safety while on their travels. Either way, we're glad we can enjoy live stand-up comedy again.

We went to five stand-up shows during the festival, having decided on three of them after attending the gala show. Hands down the best show we saw was Arsebiscuits by British-Indian storyteller and comedian Sameena Zehra. Her show was a roller coaster of intelligence, hilarity, dark humour and clever wit that has left me looking out for anything else featuring this multi-talented performer. Such a treat! 

Another on-form performance was Ladi Dadi Assadi like to party by Pax Assadi, who is really hitting his comedy stride. Ben Hurley is one of our favourites but we realised during Turn off your mind, relax and float down stream that we may have been to a few too many of his shows recently as we could recognise many of his stories from the opening lines. Guy Montgomery and Nick Rado served up fun nights out - even on a school night. 

It feels great to be able to support local artists and attend live events once again.

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