If you find yourself in the front row at a Stephen K Amos show there is a good chance you will be picked on. Don’t let this put you off though because British comedian Stephen K Amos is the perfect way to kick off the carnival-adventure-quest that is the NZ International Comedy Festival. Initially, the crowd took a bit of warming up. Amos pointed out the lacklustre welcoming but quickly got the audience humming by parodying the Kiwi accent and celebrating our global insignificance.
Stephen K Amos is a comedian whose material caters to a diverse range of people and his routines have just the right balance for those who are unaccustomed to the happenings at a comedy gig. Front row attendees Cillian and Louie, both young men who were there with their parents, were given an initiation they will not forget as Amos took to them like Adele to break-ups. The two young lads were chastised for their lack of girlfriends, their lack of life plans and their over-abundance of masturbation which led to a curly question about puberty and bum hair.
Stephen K Amos is a class act, a genuine professional of the comedy circuit and his knowledge of how to get laughs from the locals is well-rehearsed and relevant. Even though he grills some of the audience members at the end of the show he delivers a few pearls of wisdom that illuminate the need for education, tolerance and candid humanity.
Heather Bloom - Australianstage.com.au'5 Stars - There are some artists that you can always count on to make you laugh, the caliber of comedian that you can watch countless times and never get tired of. Stephen K Amos is one such artist and his latest show What Does the K Stand For? is no exception.'open/close
5 Stars - There are some artists that you can always count on to make you laugh, the caliber of comedian that you can watch countless times and never get tired of. Stephen K Amos is one such artist and his latest show What Does the K Stand For? is no exception.
Performing to a packed out Athenaeum Theatre, Amos kept the audience in fits of laughter with his well-written and cheeky brand of humour. Mostly politically incorrect and yet rarely crass, Amos walks the line of naughty without descending into filth. He doesn’t rely on profanity or smut, but rather implants these elements at well-timed intervals that add to the humor instead of detracting from it.
An Englishman’s take on Aussie life is a tried and tested joke, yet Amos keeps it fresh and keeps the audience involved throughout the hour long performance. While hecklers are almost encouraged, Amos' improvisation skills are as quick as his wit, and should you be fortunate enough to score front row tickets, beware.
Discussing political leaders, meat raffles and Australian racism in the form of a packet of lollies, Amos never misses a beat, and uses the audience to his advantage, be it a Western suburbs mullet or a suddenly awkward date night.
It is impossible not to be charmed by this tall dark and handsome Brit. Amos offers a genuine good night out and delivers plenty of laughs throughout the performance. A Melbourne International Comedy Festival staple, Amos’ material is always new, yet his genuine comedic ability is anything but transient.
A consistently funny performer, Amos is the star of this festival, be quick to get a seat, as this show is sure to sell out.
I go to the Stephen K Amos show in the largest room: Rangatira. In a three piece suit Amos arrives onto a typical stand up stage with mike, stool, water and a pool of light. He is very comfortable on stage and instantly starts to play with the audience. Before his first gag he is heckled: “You're late!” from a man in the front row. Amos doesn't miss a beat and spends a hilarious two minutes putting this man down.
He not only explains how the comedy works, but lets the audience know he is in charge and anything goes! It is brilliant improvisation as he explains the different sort of laughter and silences that the audience creates. “That laugh was me, I did that… That silence was you!”
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A word of advice to future Stephen K. Amos audience members; if you’re going to heckle with a professional such as he, be sure that what you’re saying is worthy of the disruption.
For the festival drawcard did not take kindly to being told by one would-be heckler that he had started late. Amos swiftly pounced, making it hilariously clear that his show was not to be messed with.
A good heckle, he told us, is like one he received from a former audience member who had brought a baby to the show and, angry that Amos' attention had moved to him, exclaimed in exasperation that they were “trying to get him to sleep”.
Fresh from his new sitcom radio show for BBC4 (UK), this show is said to revolve around Amos' hilarious childhood stories, but on Friday night, we were treated to much more than that.
While clearly scripted, it seemed the witty Brit’s flow was rather dictated by audience reaction. He displayed an uncanny ability to read the audience and feed off our reactions, as eager to learn about our customs and culture as he was to make fun of them.
Covering the serious, awkward and trivial - from multiculturalism and relationships to meat raffles and Marmite, the hour-long show is certainly not short on topics ripe for discussion.
Comedy can be hit and miss (more often the latter), so being witness to a comedian of this calibre was an absolute pleasure. You will not be disappointed.
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