Good year for lo­cal com­edy ahead of in­dus­try awards

CityPress - - News -

The usu­ally laid-back yet classy Katzy’s in the Hy­att Shop­ping Cen­tre in Rose­bank was in­vaded this week by a rowdy bunch of co­me­di­ans with buck­ets of Sa­vanna ciders, cour­tesy of the event’s spon­sor, for the an­nounce­ment of this year’s Sa­vanna Comics’ Choice Awards nom­i­nees. The theme for the 7th edi­tion of the awards is “free­dom of funny”. And the in­volve­ment of spon­sor Nando’s prompted host Lihle Lindzi to say: “They know all about hav­ing to fight for their free­dom of funny.”

Lindzi did a slick job host­ing this event with­out break­ing a sweat. The jour­nal­ists present played along with the help of the new Sa­vanna te­quila flavour and a lovely light lunch with (to-die-for) cala­mari ke­babs on of­fer.

Lo­cal co­me­di­ans have been break­ing ground, not wait­ing for in­ter­na­tional comics to drop cer­tain schemes or punch lines for them to repli­cate for lo­cal au­di­ences. They have been steadily gen­er­at­ing unique styles and fresh con­tent.

It has been a good year for com­edy with some re­ally solid of­fer­ings at events such as Blacks Only and the Gra­ham­stown Na­tional Arts Fes­ti­val. Co­me­di­ans in­clud­ing Robby Collins, Pele­pele, the en­ter­tain­ing Skhumba Hlophe and queen of ver­nac­u­lar com­edy Celeste Ntuli have kept the na­tion gig­gling if not bruised with car­pet burns.

Lindzi was jok­ingly sur­prised to see Hlophe nom­i­nated in a cat­e­gory for writ­ing. “You write these days, bra? I didn’t know.” Of course, Hlophe replied: “I don’t write, I just talk and it’s sold out.”

The high­light of the event was the pres­ence of com­edy vet­eran Cyril Green, who is “an el­derly gen­tle­man” (cough) and even had to be helped up to the podium. But once he was up there, he de­liv­ered what must surely be one of the long­est and fun­ni­est jokes in rec­ol­lec­tion.

As a master of the art, he’s set to re­ceive the Life­time Achiever Award at the awards cer­e­mony in Septem­ber.

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