A leg-up for new stand-up

The Weekend Australian - Review - - Television - Live From the BBC,

There’s some­thing about stand-up com­edy that is sim­ply ex­hil­a­rat­ing: the feel­ing of a combative au­di­ence ly­ing in wait — Billy Con­nolly calls it “the an­i­mal” — fol­lowed by those first vi­tal, anx­ious mo­ments of ex­change, and the sheer elec­tric­ity that sus­tains the whole thing.

This new BBC se­ries of stand-up spe­cials presents the stars of the fu­ture, most un­known here — so far, at least. It’s a bit of a re­lief not to have to stare at those same comic heads that now seem so tired from all that ex­po­sure on the Bri­tish panel shows that seem to dom­i­nate ABC pro­gram­ming.

The Bri­tish stand-up scene is a hot­bed of cre­ativ­ity that at­tracts the most dis­tinc­tive comic voices from around the world. In this se­ries some of those acts join lo­cal Bri­tish co­me­di­ans in the in­ti­mate set­ting of the art deco BBC Ra­dio Theatre, a nod to the BBC’s rich com­edy her­itage, a place where much con­tem­po­rary ra­dio hu­mour Live From the BBC is still pro­duced. It’s a lovely space too, a sim­ple raised stage and only a few coloured lanterns like large Chi­nese bal­loons in red and mauve light­ing the sole per­former.

In this pre­miere episode, award-win­ning co­me­dian Nish Ku­mar (“I’m a Bri­tish Asian gen­tle­man”) dis­cusses the ben­e­fits of hav­ing an eth­ni­cally prob­lem­atic ap­pear­ance (“the voice of Down­ton Abbey and the face of Home­land”), re­veals the true ex­tent of his pes­simistic ten­den­cies and is caus­ti­cally funny retelling his prob­lems with air­port se­cu­rity.

Join­ing him is rather sweetly droll Cana­di­an­born Mae Martin (“Did ev­ery­one have a good child­hood?”) do­ing her take on so-called “iden­tity hu­mour”, who gives us her pithy ob­ser­va­tions on liv­ing as a le­gal alien in Lon­don and what her prim par­ents make of it all. Satur­day, 8.45pm, ABC Two

The sweetly droll Cana­dian-born comic Mae Martin per­forms on

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.