Comedy for Christmas in Melbourne

By Lisa Clark

Comedy at Christmas time is the perfect choice for festive celebrations. Sometimes Very Christmassy, sometimes a look at the year gone by (& aren’t we just hanging out for 2016 to have gone bye bye?), sometimes a chance to drink, laugh and forget….  The Comedy Rooms in Melbourne are putting on some Fantastic line ups throughout December and brilliant comedians doing exciting Christmas shows. So organise your bookings, get together with your friends to laugh and forget about the past year and the coming Christmas family obligations.

3 Sat – A Very Judy Christmas – The Butterfly Club

Brendy Ford  as Judy Free

https://thebutterflyclub.com/show/a-very-judy-christmas

4  Sun – Political Asylum – The Brunswick Green

Mathew Kenneally
Toby Halligan
Jess Moir
Tom Ballard
Ben Pobjie
Nicholas J Johnson
& more!

http://blog.politicalasylum.com.au/2016/11/first-show-of-new-trump-tatorship.html

7 Wed – The Wheeler Centre The Show of the Year 2016  – The Atheneum Theatre

Casey Bennetto  Geraldine Quinn , Deborah Conway, Tom Ballard, Geraldine Hickey, Cal Wilson, Danny McGinlay, Jennifer Byrne and more…

http://www.wheelercentre.com/events/the-show-of-the-year-2016

9 Fri –  Tripod Christmas Turkeys – Memo Music Hall in St Kilda

http://3pod.com.au/site/christmas-turkeys/

10 Sat –  Tripod Christmas Turkeys – Memo Music Hall in St Kilda

http://3pod.com.au/site/christmas-turkeys/

15 Thurs –  Sammy J & Randy Land – Xmas Tour – The Atheneum

http://premier.ticketek.com.au/shows/show.aspx?sh=SAMMRAND16&v=ATT

16 Fri –  Sammy J & Randy Land – Xmas Tour – The Atheneum

http://premier.ticketek.com.au/shows/show.aspx?sh=SAMMRAND16&v=ATT

17 Sat –  Sammy J & Randy Land – Xmas Tour – The Atheneum

http://premier.ticketek.com.au/shows/show.aspx?sh=SAMMRAND16&v=ATT

19 Mon – Local Laughs Christmas show – Local Taphouse StKilda

MC Andrew McClelland
The Bedroom Philosopher
David Quirk
Michael Williams
Geraldine Hickey
& More!

21 Wed – Swingin’ Bella Christmas – Bella Union Bar

MCs Casey Bennetto and Geraldine Quinn will be joined by Tim Rogers

https://www.bellaunion.com.au/event/1114/

22 Thur – Swingin’ Bella Christmas – Bella Union Bar

MCs Casey Bennetto and Geraldine Quinn will be joined by Deborah Conway and Willy Zygier

https://www.bellaunion.com.au/event/1114/

23 Fri – Swingin’ Bella Christmas – Bella Union Bar

MCs Casey Bennetto and Geraldine Quinn will be joined by Scott Edgar, Steven Gates & Eddie Perfect

https://www.bellaunion.com.au/event/1114/

24 Sat – Little Dum Dum Club Orphan Christmas – European Bier Café

Tommy Dassalo and Karl Chandler and their mates.

https://www.trybooking.com/Booking/BookingEventSummary.aspx?eid=241442&hs=littledumdumclub.com

 

5 Good Reasons To See Smackweasel: A Memoir by Ben Pobjie

1. It is a harrowing expedition into the dark heart of an ambitious mind, a dissection of the human lust for fame and fortune that will leave nobody psychologically intact. But, you know, in a fun way.

2. It features the Comedy Festival debut of popular children’s television characters Happy Duck and Oigle the Bear. Their journeys in the Land of Self-Esteem have delighted generations of children, and now, finally, they will be delighting adults. After all, adults need self-esteem too.

3. My voice is extremely loud – this will be one of the easiest-to-hear shows of the entire festival.

4. What is a Smackweasel? A weasel on smack? A weasel you use to smack people? A jocular nickname for a certain prominent cabinet minister, relating to his peculiar sexual proclivities? There is only one way to find out, and that is to attend.

5. The show is entirely gluten-free.

Ben Pobjie’s Smackweasel: A Memoir is on at Bar Open in Fitzroy from April 8 to 19

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2015/season/shows/smackweasel-a-memoir-ben-pobjie

5 Good Reasons to See Ben Pobjie: Wearing A Towel

5 Good Reasons to See Ben Pobjie Wearing A Towel:

1. You know from the title and the poster that I’ll be showing some skin. You’ll be getting your money’s worth as far as acreages of flesh go.

2. This is the first time I’ll be devoting an hour to exploring my own feelings, stripping back layers of pretence and artifice to reach a place of true honesty on stage. As such it is possible that during the show I will suffer a nervous breakdown, and you KNOW that’s gotta be entertaining!

3. In their review of my last show, Australian Stage wrote “Pobjie bundles all kinds of comic devices together into a brilliant hilarious mess.” And that’s coming from Australian Stage. They review actual, proper plays and stuff. They know what they’re talking about. I am indeed a brilliant hilarious mess.

4. I give out hugs to people who come to my shows. Good hugs too. I’ve got these enormous arms. It’s like being hugged by a gigantic plush orang-utan. Really the hug will be worth the price of admission alone. The jokes are just a bonus.

5. Because there is nothing like hearing about another person’s problems to make your own seem less daunting.

You can see Ben Pobjie at the Lithuanian Club at 9pm til the 27th

http://www.melbournefringe.com.au/fringe-festival/show/ben-pobjie-wearing-a-towel/

Shows at 2013 Melbourne International Comedy Festival that have previously been reviewed by Squirrel Comedy.

By Lisa Clark

Waiting for reviews to come in to make a decision about what shows you are seeing this year? Well we’ve already reviewed quite a lot of shows that are on at this year’s Melbourne International Comedy Festival. Of course some of the shows reviewed here may have been reworked, improved or changed in some way. Hang the DJ has a new DJ, Eddie Pepitonne’s show isn’t called Bloodbath and some of these shows will be different at every performance. Hopefully the past reviews that you will find linked here in alphabetical order will give you an idea of what to expect and help you work out what you are going to see this year. Look out for our new reviews from this years comedy festival, coming soon to Squirrel Comedy!

 

AUNTY DONNA AND THE FAX MACHINE SHOP

Aunty Donna’s first show Aunty Donna in Pants Suits got them nominated for a Golden Gibbo Award, this new show, originally performed at Melbourne Fringe 2012 made them winners of the People’s Choice Award. Aunty Donna are a sketch troupe of four guys performing very adult humour. Cathy enjoyed it and thought it was ‘a very slick production. It’s tightly scripted and well-performed.’

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=2043

Aunty Donna will be late at The Portland Hotel

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/aunty-donna-and-the-fax-machine-shop

 

BEN POBJIE – LET’S PUT ON A SHOW

Ben’s show is a collaboration with the audience to explore the nature of putting on a comedy show. Elyce thought the show was fun and that’ the more the audience puts into this show, the more you will get back’.

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=2020

Ben Pobjie will be on at Gertrude’s Brown Couch

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/let-s-put-on-a-show-ben-pobjie

 

EDDIE PEPITONE

I adored Eddie when I first saw him in Edinburgh at the recording of Stuart Goldsmiths’  Comedian’s Comedian podcast. I knew I had to see his solo show Blood Bath and was not disappointed. I described him as ‘arse-achingly funny’.

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=1804

Eddie’s solo show is on at 11pm on April 5th at Victoria Hotel – Banquet Room

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/one-off-solo-show-eddie-pepitone

He’ll be doing seven shows as part of Headliners

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/in-headliners-eddie-pepitone

and there will be a showing of his documentary Bitter Buddha is on at the Hifi Bar 4pm on April 6th

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/eddie-pepitone-documentary-the-bitter-buddha

 

FELICITY WARD – THE HEDGEHOG DILEMMA

Felicity’s only appearance at this year’s comedy festival will be a reprise of her stunning, hilarious and moving show The Hedgehog Dilema. She’s filming it for prosperity and I can’t recommend it highly enough. It was one of the first shows I saw last year and her story stayed with me for a long time. ‘Her ability to keep the audience in stitches throughout all of this is a testament to her stunning talent.’

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=1237

The Hedgehog Dilemma will be on at the Atheneum Theatre on April 15

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/the-hedgehog-dilemma-felicity-ward

 

GIRLS UNINTERUPTED ARE GOOD VALUE

Cathy thought that it was criminal that Louise Joy McCrae and Nicolette Minster don’t have higher comedy profiles on the Australian Comedy Scene in her review from Melbourne Fringe 2012

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=2082

They’re performing at Portland Hotel in the Portland Room

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/are-good-value-girls-uninterrupted

 

HANG THE DJ – ANDY McCLELLAND & KIEREN O’SULLIVAN – 

This now has a different DJ to the one reviewed at Melbourne Fringe 2012. But Andy is still there in a show where he gets to share his passion for music and hilarious tales of being a DJ. Colin said ‘This fusion of comedy, music and dancing was a brilliant way to end an evening.’

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=2085

Hang the DJ is on late at Trades Hall in the Quilt Room<
http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/hang-the-dj-feat-dj-kieran-o-sullivan-andrew-mcclelland-s

 

HOW TO GET RICH ALEISHA McCORMAC

Originally directed by Julia Zemiro for the 2012 Melbourne Fringe, I thought this one woman play was ‘a  pretty light and fluffy soufflé of a show that would suit a girls’ night out or hen’s night’

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=2052

Aleisha will be performing at Trades Hall – The Meeting Room til April 7th

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/how-to-get-rich-aleisha-mccormack

 

LIVE ON AIR WITH POET LAUREATE TELIA NEVILE 

When I first saw Live on Air it was really a work in progress but I still found it very entertaining and Telia was ‘able to consistently create new ways to make her audience laugh with her clever poetry and personas.’ She’s apparently put a lot of work in it since so it should be a pretty fabulous show.

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=2016

Live on Air will be on at The Northcote Town Hall

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/live-on-air-poet-laureate-telia-nevile

 

NICHOLAS J JOHNSON – TODAY TONIGHT, TOMORROW THE WORLD

Based on his own true experience appearing on Today Tonight and Cathy thought it was ‘a cracker’

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=1956

Today Tonight, Tomorrrow the World will be at Comedy on Collins at The Scots Church Assembly Hall

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/today-tonight-tomorrow-the-world-nicholas-j-johnson

 

 ROB HUNTER – LATE O’ CLOCK WITH ROB HUNTER

In the tradition of Alan Partridge and Dame Edna amongst other purveyors of Theatre of Cruelty, Rob Hunter’s interview show satirises chat shows while being pretty mean to the guests, who are mostly in on the joke. Our reviewer wasn’t when he saw it at last year’s Melbourne International Comedy Festival and did not have a very good time as he explained ‘ The MICF blurb about this show being “uncomfortably tense” and “not for the squeamish” was a freaking understatement for me personally’ Well if Rob Hunter is hoping to provoke strong reactions, it certainly worked with Andrew who gifted Rob with the poster quote ‘I fucking hated this show’ . We’ll be giving another reviewer a go at it this year.

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=1380

Late O’Clock with Rob Hunter is on at Melb Town Hall  in the Cloak Room

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/late-o-clock-with-rob-hunter-rob-hunter

 

SIMON MUNNERY – FYLM MAKKER

Simon Munnery has been around a long time is always up to something creative, original and silly. We think Simon is a comedy genius and this was the highlight of Colin’s 2012 Edinburgh Fringe. He describes it thusly; ‘Broadcast via video link from the middle of the room, he performs sketches, monologues, puppetry and songs to camera using all sorts of video trickery to create a unique and hilarious show.’

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=1861

Simon is performing at The Victoria Hotel in the Vic’s Bar

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/fylm-makker-simon-munnery

 

SLUTMONSTER AND FRIENDS

This was a show that blew the minds of everyone who saw it at last year’s Melbourne Fringe Festival. You came out wondering ‘What the hell was that?’ and ‘Why am I still still laughing hours later?’ Beautifully designed, sharply written with clever catchy songs, surprises and lots of rude bits. Colin said ‘It’s a sick, twisted and perverted play that’s gutbustingly hilarious.’

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=1985

Slutmonster will be Strutting her stuff at the Northcote Town Hall
http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/slutmonster-and-friends

 

TRYING HARD – ALASDAIR TREMBLAY-BIRCHALL

Alasdair gives us two shows for the price of one in what Cathy describes as ‘some entertaining and delightfully original comedy’

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=2026

Trying Hard is on at the Forum Theatre – Carpet Room
http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/trying-hard-alasdair-tremblay-birchall

 

VICTORIA HEALY ‘S ANATOMY

Victoria Healy is not very comfortable with her body but manages to spend an hour exploring it for laughs. Elyce described Healy as ‘a quick-witted and talented comedic performer, who is only getting better and better at her craft.’

http://www.squirrelcomedy.com/?p=1965

Victoria is on at the Imperial Hotel

http://www.comedyfestival.com.au/2013/season/shows/victoria-healy-s-anatomy

Ben Pobjie – Let’s Put On A Show

By Elyce Phillips

Writing reviews can be hard. You go and see a show and that’s all well and good, but then you have to somehow make words on a page about it and it’s all an awful lot of effort. Luckily, Ben Pobjie has made life easy for the critics among us by providing a short leaflet of suggested things to write when reviewing ‘Let’s Put On A Show’. And so… Ben Pobjie’s ‘Let’s Put On A Show’ is “a lot like having balloon animals forced down your throat by a Nazi.” I can say without doubt that “I spent the whole time vomiting on myself”. Wait, no. That won’t do at all. Let me start over.

Ben Pobjie’s ‘Let’s Put On A Show’ is a quick-witted improvisational exploration of comedic performance. Over the course of the hour, Pobjie attempts to uncover exactly what it is we, as an audience, want from a comedy show. He takes us through the essential components of any performance, from hecklers to joke topics, collaborating with the audience to figure out what we would consider to be the perfect show. Scattered throughout are stories about what drew Pobjie to comedy and his ongoing quest for fame.

Be prepared to get involved. This is an interactive show in an intimate venue, so you really don’t have anywhere to hide. Now, the words “audience participation” have been known to strike fear into the heart of many a festival goer – myself among them – but be assured that it is not as terrifying as it may sound. Pobjie works with the crowd to create comedy, as opposed to singling out individuals to be the butt of the joke.

On the night I attended, there were moments where the audience was reticent to participate, but on the whole, they were willing to collaborate, throwing out the topic of “cute animals” as the thing they’d most like to see a show about. Pobjie’s ability to take a topic and run with it is impressive. Cute animals may not be an intuitive source for comedy, but Pobjie managed to take the discussion in a hilarious and somewhat disturbing direction after discovering that a gentleman in the front row had a cat named Barbarella. The more the audience puts into this show, the more you will get back.

‘Let’s Put On A Show’ is great fun. Go along, get involved and you won’t be disappointed. I for one hope to see our chosen production – ‘Barbarella the Cat and the Japanese Slitface Ghost Go Camping’ – at the Comedy Festival next year.

Ben Pobjie – Let’s Put On A Show is on at Son of Loft at the Lithuanian Club until October 13

http://www.melbournefringe.com.au/fringe-festival/show/let-s-put-on-a-show/