The New Zealand International Comedy Festival is back with a bang! The three-week festival started on Thursday evening at the Sky City Theatre with the hilarious 5 Star Comedy Preview. Ten international comedians were packed into a two and half hour show, providing us with a sneak peak at what is to come from this year’s festival at The Classic Comedy Club and Comedy Chamber at Auckland Town Hall.
Kicking off the show was born and bred cockney geezer Rich Wilson who was to be our MC for the night. With his impeccable timing and commanding presence, it is no wonder he is regarded as one of the UK’s best MC’s.
Welsh man, Lloyd Langford was next to take to the stage. His likable nature and expressionless persona really complimented his witty observations about New Zealand even suggesting a dream combination for a new flag design.
Harley Breen followed, the Australian single father shared stories about his son’s pooing incidents and his mum’s midnight scrotum inspections.
Londoner Jimmy McGhie shared his frustrations about the hipsters of today, whilst the only female comedian of the evening and first time at the festival Angela Barnes left the audience giggling and questioning their tinder profiles.
Finishing off the first half George Egg demonstrated some cooking skills live on stage. Whilst on tour, he’d found himself dissatisfied with the quality and cost of room-service so he decided to experiment with the equipment found in his hotel rooms. There are certainly no boundaries for this culinary comedian.
The second act kicked off with regular comedy fest favourite James Acaster. Awkwardly running onto the stage after being mistakenly pronounced as the last act. The British comedian played on Rick Wilson’s slip up and it certainly worked in his favour. The crowd were left howling and definitely wanting more.
Nish Kumar took down the spice girls in his witty performance based on various parts of pop culture.
Finishing off the show on a high was Ron Josol. The Filipino/Canadian comic was certainly to blame for the teary smudged mascara mishaps of the evening as the theatre was left in hysterics after his rendition of an 1850’s porno.
The crowd favourite of the night was Finnish comedian Ismo Leikola. His simple yet side-splitting performance left everybody in tears. Playing a variety of gigs throughout the festival, he is definitely a must see!
The conveyor belt of comics had us entertained all evening- leaving us with a burning desire for more. My cheeks were sore and my stomach aching but it was all certainly worth the pain!
Reviewed by Lauren Sanderson.