Fortune Theatre Studio, Dunedin

14/03/2014 - 15/03/2014

Dunedin Fringe 2014

Production Details

Elbert Hubbard once said, “Don’t take life too seriously. You’ll never get out of it alive.” After a horrible year or ‘annus horibilis’, Jamie’s been wondering what to do when things fall apart. The answer? Start laughing. Laughter is our greatest weapon and Heart Goes Boom is all about laughing hardest when life goes comically wrong. 

Jamie Bowen is one of New Zealand’s most creative and exciting comedians. He’s a 15-year veteran of the New Zealand International Comedy Festival and his career has taken him all over the world.

2012 saw Jamie perform at both the Adelaide Fringe and Edinburgh Fringe Festivals before supporting Rhys Darby on his 25 date UK tour. He spent 2013 playing the British comedy circuit with shows across the UK and Europe including Croatia, Romania, Switzerland, Czech Republic, Holland, Austria and Malta. 

He has made appearances on local TV shows including Pulp Comedy, Comedy Central, Jono’s New Show, WannaBen, TV3’s AotearoHa and TVNZ’s Comedy Jam. He was also one of the creators, writers and stars of TVNZ’s A Night at The Classic and works both onscreen and behind the scenes for TV3’s award winning show 7 Days. 

Heart Goes Boom is a rollicking hour of heartfelt and hilarious comedy from one of New Zealand’s funniest and most established comedians. Don’t miss it. 

“He’s honestly one of New Zealand’s greatest stand ups” – tvnz.co.nz
**** – threeweeks.co.uk 
**** – one4review.co.uk 

March 14, 15 
Fortune Theatre Studio, 231 Stuart St, Dunedin  
9:00 pm | 60 min 
Online Tickets: $14
Door Sales: $18 
Dash Tickets (0800 327 484) 
World Premier
Adult Themes
Wheelchair Accessible

– See more at: http://www.dunedinfringe.org.nz/artist-events/view/heart-goes-boom#sthash.RonSO8wC.dpuf 

Theatre , Stand-up comedy ,


Sometimes ludicrous, often crude, always very funny

Review by Reuben Hilder 16th Mar 2014

Jamie Bowen will laugh at anything and not long into his new show Heart Goes Boom, recently premiered at the Fortune Theatre Studio, that I find myself laughing with him. As the show progresses that sense of shared amusement remains and characterises his performance. I don’t feel like I’m laughing at him or even that he is making me laugh but rather that he is recounting things that amuse him and we are sharing a laugh over them.

This, I feel, is one of the most challenging, but also most important skills for a stand-up to master. It is so much easier to have a good time when the man of the stage with the microphone is leading the way by example. There is a pleasure independent of what is being said – which in this case is very funny in its own right – in watching a performer enjoy themselves on stage.

Bowen also has great physicality and stage presence, summoning spectacular levels of energy for the high points in his show both with his voice and his body to create a tirade of hilarity which he hurls at the audience.  Not that the entire show is like this. It is a mix of highs and lows that rises and falls masterfully – another important aspect of comedy some stand-ups struggle with.

A large portion of the show focuses on the recent hardships that Bowen has endured and many of the low points in his show centre around actually very tragic stories from Bowen’s past, but Bowen always undercuts the tragedy by proceeding to laugh at what was, at the time, emotionally devastating for him. Bowen reminds us of H L Mencken’s famous assertion, that “God is a comedian, playing to an audience too afraid to laugh,” assuring us that now, looking back, he sees the joke. And because he is laughing at the tragedy, we feel as if we can too. 

Not that the whole show is about laughing at tragedy, although I would say that is the overall theme. Large portions of it go off on extensive stream-of-consciousness tangents. In addition, Bowen likes to make fun of his audience, singling out a reaction he finds amusing or making fun of someone for walking in late or using the toilet.  This, taken out of context, may seem confrontational or even aggressive but Bowen treads carefully in these areas. He always makes it clear he is only jibing his victims in playful humour and if he sense that they aren’t taking it as such, he backs off and always ends with an apology.  

His humour is sometimes ludicrous and often crude, but what it always is, is very, very funny. A simply delightful evening.


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