The Melbourne International Comedy Festival is bringing the best comedians from around the world to Melbourne from 28 March to 22 April, just for your laughing pleasure and without the inconvenience of having to calculate your duty free allowance. With a couple of weeks until the festival kicks off, we’ve wrapped up nine shows guaranteed to get you cackling and crying with laughter, so add them in to your diary now!
Masterful storyteller and multi award-winning comedian Tim Key (UK) returns to the Festival with a brand new show blending poeticals, spotlights, cables, lager, foot-stamping and old school wistfulness. Key is renowned for his role as Alan Partridge’s sidekick in ‘Mid-Morning Matters’ as well as scooping the Edinburgh Comedy Award in 2009. Tim plays Melbourne Town Hall 29 March – 8 April.
Deadpan comic genius, Rich Hall (USA) is back with his trademark scathing political satire. The Edinburgh Fringe Perrier Award winner is a master of absurdist irony while eschewing the human condition, and is heading to Melbourne from 29 March – 8 April.
A true festival legend, fan-favourite and Melbourne International Comedy Festival Barry Award 2016 nominee, David O’Doherty (UK) returns to Australia with a brand-new show made up of talking and songs played on his crappy keyboard from 1986. David will tour his show in Melbourne (29 March – 22 April), Perth (24 April), Sydney (25 April), Brisbane (26 April), Wellington (27 & 28 April) and Auckland (29 April).
After selling out her first two Edinburgh Fringe runs on word-of-mouth alone, whip-smart Scottish stand-up Fern Brady (UK) is set to make her Australian debut. Known for her dry wit and caustic charm, she is bold, brash and sometimes brutal, using her unique worldview to dissect politics and relationships with passionate honesty. Fern plays ACMI – Studio 29 March – 22 April.
After a massive year, one of the most critically acclaimed comedians at the Edinburgh Fringe, Fin Taylor (UK) sets his sights on Melbourne. A white, male comedian willing to drag his own privilege through the mud, Fin presents fearless, visceral and painfully funny social commentary not to be missed. Fin plays ACMI 29 March – 22 April.
Host of the global hit podcast ‘The Bugle’ and Master of Satire, Andy Zaltzman (UK) returns to Melbourne this year. As seen in full cricket kit talking to a cauliflower on the Melbourne Comedy Festival Great Debate in 2017, Andy will be keeping audiences on their toes again with his new show. Andy plays Melbourne Town Hall 10 April – 22 April.
A sell-out hit at the 2017 Comedy Festival with his show Dot Con, James Veitch (UK) is back for level two with Game Face, a show filled with more geeky comedy about life, love and enabling Bluetooth. He is responsible for the fastest ever TED Talk to reach over two million views in the history of TED. He’ll play Melbourne Town Hall 29 March – 22 April.
Mark Watson (UK) has more than a decade of shows, multiple 24 and 36-hour comedy marathons and a library of novels up his sleeve. His show I’m Not Here is the story of a traumatic journey to Australia and an exploration of identity in the digital age. Mark plays Melbourne Town Hall 29 March – 8 April.
Grammy award-winning cabaret superstar, Lady Rizo (USA) is all set to make her Festival debut with her sharp humour and soulful, soaring voice. The New York chanteuse delivers a deeply personal musical eulogy unpacking the feelings for the country she was born in. Lady Rizo plays The Famous Spiegeltent 3 – 22 April.
For all show details and tickets head to comedyfestival.com.au.