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Comics' Corner - 2020

2020 HAS BEEN a wild ride, but it’s sure seen an explosion of heart-warming comedy in the Top End. Will Crawford writes about the year that was.

In March, pre-Rona, Raw Comedy winner and poet-turned-comedian Kelly Gulliver impressed with her hilarious takedown of the Coconut Grove Yoga set; Nathan “Glitter Bit” Powell delivered one of the funniest glitter-based routines seen this decade; and Raw Comedy saw the unearthing of comedy diamond in the rough, sassy, sharp-tongued musician, Teghan Hughes.

But post-Raw, comedians were locked up for months. Like a beacon rising through June, Shalom Kaa teamed with Darwin Live and Hanuman’s to put together the innovative online dinner and laugh live shows, which were both hilarious and delicious – not necessarily in that order.

By July, Darwin Fringe was back, and seven stellar comedians performed at Dom’s Bar in sell-out Raw, Ready and Unsteady (pictured). Headlining comic Micah Kickett sang, rapped and joked his way into people’s hearts, as people lined the aisles crying tears of joy as if at a church wedding. Another firecracker worthy of note is the delightful, but unpredictable, Danica Jenner.

Darwin Entertainment Centre (DEC) gave performers from a range of art forms the opportunity to showcase their skills in In Motion, which saw Brent Watkinson send crowds into delirium with some of the most hilarious Tasmanian dating stories this hack as ever heard.

2020 also saw the arrival of the Deadly Darwin Black Spot Indigenous storytelling night, and the Deadly Darwin Ebony and Ivory shows. Paul Seden, James Parfitt, Max Browne and Richie Harrison all delighted crowds in their sold-out shows.

The cheeky and lovable Amy Hetherington delivered the laughs in Don’t Feed the Ducks, which featured in the Darwin Festival before selling out at DEC’s Playhouse – the first solo Playhouse performance from a local comedian. Hetherington continued to kick goals with Be a Yes Person, in which comedians and non-comedians took a step outside their comfort zone.

2020 has also seen the birth of some great comedy nights. Mel Little created the fantastic Schnitz ‘n’ Giggles showcase in Palmerston, Humpty Doo and Parap; Leah Potter started the Comedy Den, a naughty late night comedy show at Smoke and Oak; Lucky Bat Laughs started on the last Wednesday of the month; and Dolly’s first Saturday of the month shows are all delivering huge laughs.

If 2020 could deliver all of this, we are in for a treat next year.

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