Comedy Festival ’08

6 05 2008

The comedy festival came and went all too quickly this year.  However I did get to see Arj Barker and Daniel Kitson before the end of the festival. 

If you’ve seen Arjy Barjy before you’ll know what to expect; a fair chunk of low-brow humour!  Thankfully Arj isn’t all poopy jokes (though I wouldn’t recommend him if that’s not your cup of tea!) and he’s a notch smarter and more respectful than many in his category.  Further, he’s possessed with superb comedic timing and delivery.  I’ve seen Arj a few times now and, while he’s not been pushing boundaries or doing anything particularly new he’s always funny and enjoyable.  Especially if you’re a guy.

After following him in interviews and on TV I’d been wanting to see Kitson for years but had just never gotten organised enough to do so.  I wish I’d seen him sooner.  In a packed Athaneum I caught him on his last night, a Sunday.  Funny, touching, compassionate, extraordinarily eloquent, Kitson’s show was based around telling a number of (often hilarious) interconnected stories while appealing to the audience to be generally considerate of others and generally decent.  Yeah, a comedy show with moralistic intentions.  Brilliantly delivered by perhaps the greatest storyteller I’ve ever seen it was definitely up there as one of the best comedy (theatre?) shows I’ve seen. 

However, it was long.  Kitson started talking then, almost two hours later, he was done.  Half-way through we felt drained and, by the end, exhausted as we were led through a roller-coaster of emotions and though-provoking scenarios.  Despite my obvious love of the show even I had to admit that it could have been more enjoyable had some further judicious editing been undertaken. 

Having said that, I can’t wait to see him next!

Thanks to Daniella and Frank for help in organising these shows.




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