Kitty O'Sheas, 28 Courtenay Place, Wellington

30/04/2013 - 04/05/2013

NZ International Comedy Festival 2007-09, 2013

Production Details


Do you like pranks? Sam Smith does. He might also be your dentist. Sorry about that – it really is the stuff of nightmares.

But fear not! For Sam Smith is no ordinary dental prankster; never mixing work with play, he prefers the petite prank – not big pranks that leave you covered in gunge, those ones take too much effort. Much more to his taste is the everyday prank like tying children’s shoelaces together, or making you look here*, or proposing to your then-girlfriend-now-wife as a joke.

This May, join Sam as he guides you down a magical passage way of mischief, jokes, songs, even giving you a few ideas you can try out when you get home. Sam’s mixture of great storytelling, comedic timing and a more than passing resemblance to John Cusack makes Samantics a must see show for everyone that enjoys a sneaky giggle at other people’s expense. Come for the laughs and the 90s movies reminiscence, stay for the valuable advice for your own prankster escapades.

Sam returns to the NZ International Comedy Festival with his first solo show, Samantics. Sam is an accomplished writer, comedian, and musician, having performed throughout New Zealand for over ten years. Sam was a national finalist in the 2011 Raw Comedy Quest, and co-starred in the NZICF 2012 show ‘Play it again, Sams’. He writes for TV3′s 7 Days, Jono and Ben at Ten, Would I Lie To You? and the upcoming sitcom Sunny Skies. He lives in Wellington with his then-girlfriend-now-wife and is a regular headliner in the stand-up scene.

“Sam Smith is God’s favourite New Zealand comedian – and mine.” – Michael Palin

*Made you look.

As part of the 2013 NZ International Comedy Festival

Dates: Tue 30 April – Sat 4 May, 9:15 PM
Venue: Kitty O’Sheas, 28 Courtenay Place, CBD
Tickets: $12 – $16 (booking fees may apply)

For the sweetest deals and hottest comedy news throughout the Festival head to

A little bit witty, a little bit self-depreciating, and a lot mischief

Review by Shannon Friday 01st May 2013

Walking into the cozy upstairs room at Kitty O’Sheas, my first thought is, “Man, this looks like the stand up set on Seinfeld.”  Sam Smith misses none of this, doing a “dead-on impression” of the stand-up in the first ten minutes of his set.  And it’s a pretty good set.

Samantics, Smith’s first solo show, is about the “games and jokes” he likes to play on the people around him, and he reaches a near-religious – if somewhat tongue-in-cheek – fervor in wanting to see these games spread. 

Smith’s onstage persona is a little bit witty, a little bit self-depreciating, and a lot mischief. There’s a slightly hard edge to a lot of his humor, but Smith’s willingness to laugh at himself and, on opening night, handle hecklers graciously, keeps the sting from hurting too much.

Smith starts with what looks like a series of complaints about the trivial difficulties of modern life: long lines, customer service people who don’t listen, etc. There’s a lot of one-liners. But the show quickly shifts gear with the games moving to the audience, including a birthday guessing game, and a game of “Did You Know Dat?”

There’s also some musical comedy, including a Michael Jackson cover on the recorder that I desperately want to hear the end of.  The show’s high point is ‘Songs I Ruined’: a bunch of one-line song parodies that have me crying with tears. The end of the show involves a truly epic prank; this might be the only show ever where I’d encourage people to bring their mobiles.

True, the show wanders a bit in the middle – why does the bass guitar make an appearance? – and some of the later stereotyped jokes are a bit tired (women like to talk; Asians work hard; Christchurch’s buildings fall down).  It just doesn’t stand up to the wit of his earlier jokes.

But there’s more than enough here to make it a solid night of entertainment.


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