With hundreds of shows, it’s easy to miss out on some cracking comedy.
The Melbourne International Comedy Festival is already selling tickets to shows. But with hundreds of shows, how do you go about choosing the performances to go and see? (Featured image: Bogomil Mihaylov)
Do you stick to the classic MICF comedy events or the big-name headliners for guaranteed laughs or do you take a punt by rocking up to the Town Hall on any given night and choosing from the list of shows that still have tickets available?
Either way, you’re bound to miss out on some top-notch performances especially from many up-and-coming comedians who have only recently begun their rise to stardom.
With that said, we asked comedian, writer and founder of Bits & Pieces Comedy, Maryellen George, for some of her top recommendations of underrepresented, emerging and lesser-known comics that are bound to have you laugh, giggle and smile as they work the room.
1. Doggo, Alice Tovey
Alice Tovey does more than just tell jokes. On stage, she’ll blend musical comedy into experimental performance with nods to burlesque and immersive theatre that’ll have you crying out for more of her hot-takes on life.
Performing at The Butterfly Club
2. Bunny Rabbit, Sam Serna
Sam Serna’s festival debut was only last year, and yet her show with Sunanda Sachatrakul was Broadsheet’s top festival pick for a comedy show at the Melbourne Fringe. In her solo debut, Sam talks about sex, anatomy, bodily fluids, pop culture references, some politics, but most of all, the intricacies of dating after thirteen years of marriage. To hear the story behind her IG post above, you’re going to need to go to her show.
Performing at the Belgian Beer Cafe Melbourne
3. Don’t Tell My Family, Amma Bee
After leaving Pakistan, Amma Bee lived in Canada before moving to Australia and living in some of our country’s most obscure locations. And it wasn’t until she was living in Alice Springs that she took to the stage and started wowing audiences with the chronicles of her life that just so happen to be damn hilarious.
Performing at Caz Reitops Dirty Secrets
4. Good Egg, Scout Boxall
The title of Scout’s comedy performance comes from the time their mum game them a bad haircut which stayed with them for the next three years. This period of their life has served them well with self-deprecating humour now one of their strengths and our joys. Having won Best Emerging Artist 2019 at the Melbourne Fringe, Scout’s first solo show is certain to be genre-defying and cracking-good time.
Performing in The Quilt Room at Trades Hall
5. Of Outsiders and Misfits, He Huang, Maren Whittaker and Olga Loitsenko
What’s better than one funny woman on stage? Three funny women on stage.
Join He Huang, Maren Whittaker and Olga Loitsenko for a night of defying expectations, exploring different cultures and sex. Not with them, but how Berlin shouldn’t be the only city that has an amazing sex club and avoiding the dating topic with your mum.
Performing at The Carlton Club
6. Charging For It, Bella Green
Winner of the Adelaide Fringe’s Best Comedy 2020, Bella Green is taking her show to Melbourne where she’ll spill the beans, among other things, on why paying for sex is so similar to ordering a salad. If that’s not enough to get you to her show, then maybe you’re not ready for ”the voice modern comedy needs” (DeAnne Smith).
Performing at Campari House
7. The Breast of the Fest
Showcasing the best of Melbourne’s emerging comedic talent, The Breast of the Fest returns donning power suits and surprise guest breasts on various nights. Now in its third year, The Breast of the Fest has become a must-see show at MICF and if you haven’t caught it yet, then you’re in for one helluva night.
Starring Jordan Barr, Prue Blake, Donna Collins, Cat Finch & Sashi Perera.
Performing in The Meeting Room at Trades Hall