It’s a Canadian showcase, with added Australian “for visa reasons”. Queensland’s Jacques Barrett’s comedy partner couldn’t get over to Melbourne for the Comedy Fest, so instead every night the audience are treated to some of the Great White North’s top comedians.
Barrett is clearly a big fan of Canada; I guess he wouldn’t be doing this show otherwise! But he knows the country and its narcotics pretty intimately. He’s playing double duty as he MC’s and represents Oz, and has done an incredible job creating a proper late night comedy gig. The atmosphere, the jokes, how intoxicated the audience are; Boomerangs and Beavertales is entirely different to shows that start even 15 minutes before.
Jack Druce is the first Canadian to the mic, it is important to note that he has lived in Australia since he was nine however. Sex with birds and men who love magic; Druce’s personality is much less intense than the other two comedians, so the show balances nicely.
Headliner Lars Cailleou has the rosiest cheeks you’ve ever seen and is in Melbourne all the way from Edmonton, Alberta. Strangely though, so was one of the audience members in the second row. Cailleou’s on stage personality is larger than life; you’ve never seen someone so excited to see a person from their home town before. And this energy just continues through the whole of his set.
Obviously they were told with comedic intent, but when there are no female comics to level the playing field having quite so many sexist jokes in the show gets a little old at times. You could tell when the audience, which was predominately women, had maybe had enough because for the rest of the evening the room was laughing constantly.
There are bits where the comics have a dig at the other country, but it’s clear these guys all get on like a house on fire. They’re asking each other to do the jokes they love, and performing ones they wrote together. They’re just too friendly for it to be a tooth and nail fight to comedy finish.
– Joanna Trainor
Joanna is a Journalism student on exchange from London, currently studying at RMIT. Having missed Edfringe last year she is absolutely loving being around Melbourne for the Comedy Fest. She can often be found singing too many show tunes, and drinking all the coffee. Follow her on Twitter, @mintpixeljo, for more stagey ramblings.
When: Until 17th April, 10pm
Where: The Downstairs Lounge @ The Swanston Hotel