He’s best known for his big brain on the game show The Chase, but Paul Sinha has also been a professional stand up comedian for nearly 20 years. With nine Edinburgh Festival Fringe shows under his belt he’s now brought Paul Sinha: A Stand-up Comedy NZ Premiere to The Classic here in Auckland. So, can this quiz egghead make you laugh? Is the ‘Sinnerman’ a winner man?
His comedy pedigree is apparent from the outset. His well-crafted set takes you on a journey through his life covering everything from his days as a doctor and coming out as a gay man, through to being the white-suited brain box on one of New Zealand favourite day time tv shows.
With every anecdote, there is a well-crafted punchline and joke and fans of the Sinnerman will learn a lot about the man behind the chaser’s desk. There were plenty of laugh out loud moments and he definitely knew the right kiwi buttons to press by including some outstanding sporting jokes around rugby and cricket.
The only thing that surprised me was his somewhat nervous delivery and demeanour which made it all too apparent that this was a well-written but maybe an over-rehearsed piece of comedic theatre. However, overall this didn’t take away from the fact we watched a very entertaining hour of comedy that was enjoyed by all. Having sold out 10 of his 11 nights at The Classic, Paul is very aware that this is probably due to his minor celebrity status and not due to his comedic profile, but he is very humble and grateful for this nonetheless.
Paul Sinha is a sweet, witty man who will definitely please his Chase fans and NZ comedy fest attendees alike.
Check out Paul Sinha: A Stand-up Comedy NZ Premiere at SKYCITY Theatre on the 19th May. In Wellington, he’s at Te Auaha – Tapere Nui (Big Theatre) 20 – 25th May.
Reviewed by Ian Wright.