JAMES ROQUE, ELI MATTHEWSON and EDITH POOR in MINORITY REPORT
02/05/2012 - 05/05/2012
THREE COMICS. ONE HOUR. ZERO STRAIGHT WHITE MALES.
Straight from the leafy suburbs of Auckland comes Minority Report, the line-up show where three of New Zealand’s freshest young comics take you on a journey through the hilarious battle field of not fitting in with white beardy status quo. James – a Filipino thug-nerd from the North Shore, Eli – a Christchurch theatre geek and Edith – a twisted Devonport sweetheart, know what it’s like to be one of three of New Zealand’s hard done by minorities; Asian, Gay and Girl.
James and Edith were part of the 2009 Class Comedians program mentored by straight white comedian, Ben Hurley.
James, now a third year acting student at Unitec, is fast rising up the local comedy scene. He performs regularly at the Classic as well as many other venues in and around Auckland, was a national finalist in the 2011 Raw Quest and was recently a stand out performer in TV3’s AotearoHa – Next Big Things.
Edith has great success as an actress, playing the Tourette’s ridden brat, Sophie, in Madeleine Sami’s SuperCity (TV3) as well as the real Mr. Asia’s saucy girlfriend in Underbelly Land of the Long Green Cloud (TV3). Edith features as a regular performer at the Fanfiction nights, hosted by Rose Matafeo.
Since moving to Auckland in 2010, Eli has made an impressive impact on the Auckland Comedy scene. He was also a national finalist for the 2011 Comedy Raw Quest and won ‘Best Comedy’ for the Auckland Fringe for his show ‘Square Eye Pair’ as well as being a part of the ConArtists, where he represents Auckland at the New Zealand Improv Festival. He is also a third year acting student at Unitec.
You’ll be hard pressed to a show in the New Zealand Comedy Festival that covers such diverse topics as first love, growing up and Harry Potter 7, with such an ethnic/camp/feminine perspective.
As part of the NZ International Comedy Festival 2012
Dates: Wed 2– Sat 5 May, 10pm
Venue: Brooklyn Bar, 57 Lorne St, Auckland City.
Tickets: Adults $12, Conc. $10, Groups 10+ $10
Bookings: www.ticketek.co.nz or (09) 307 5051
Duration: 1 hour
For a full line up of performances, booking details & more information, visit www.comedyfestival.co.nz
Young, fresh, easy energy
Review by Nik Smythe 03rd May 2012
Eli, Edith and James hit the stage with fresh young friendliness, here to raise awareness of their respective minority-type inflictions: James is Asian, Eli’s gay, and Edith’s a woman.
To get us into the vibe of persecuted underdogs, the gang warms up the crowd by getting us to play a rhythmic underbed for their rudimentary topical rapping styles (incorporating some minorities contained in the audience such as ‘disabled’ and ‘sexy’) with the repeating chorus “Can you deal with that?” Simultaneously clever and lame. And the twenty-odd punters are well relaxed as the first of the three takes the stage for his set.
Amiable Filipino lad James Roque describes his experience growing up Asian in Auckland. He grew up with low self-esteem, failing miserably on school sports days but finding some consolation amusing himself by playing on the presumptions of locals who frequently assume he can’t speak English. As a scrawny Asian bookworm he couldn’t get a girlfriend, and as a driver he feels unfairly judged. James carries off his twenty minutes with a controlled sense of ease, not seeming at all too bitter or traumatized from the stories he’s shared, but he’s young yet.
Wryly convivial Edith Poor follows, a self-confessed nineteen year-old weirdo. Like James, her view of the world is to some degree jaded but not totally sardonic; more like the comfortable cynicism enjoyed by young misfits. The up-front gag, that females comprise over half the human population but are still often treated as minorities, is left to speak for itself rather than explained or exploited. Instead Edith regales us with heroically lame jokes about periods and a splendiferous left-field original play (sadly sans soundtrack due to faulty kazoos) concerning Oprah, Jackie Chan and the fate of NZ comedy. Weird? Noo…
Finally, genial gayboy Eli Matthewson takes centre stage to tell us how it is for a young homosexual these days, beginning with the point of self-discovery while playing The Sims. The heist-movie like tale of his mother’s reaction to the news, wannabe Grandma as she is, is misguided at pretty much every turn. After a few suggested ways to gay up Hollywood film classics, and confessing his plan to address the frustration he endures with the prejudice of women, always assuming he’s got the best fashion advice just because he’s queer, Eli concludes with the sensitive paean of forbidden love from a dying stormtrooper, for… well, not to give it away I’ll just say Star Wars’ gayest character.
No grand crescendos of mirth, or awkward gaps of painful silence; all in all the easy energy of this trio of fresh young talent passes the hour in good spirits.
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