Comedy festival features local talent

Melbourne-based comedians Geraldine Quinn, Nick Capper and Raewyn Pickering are performing at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival (MICF) in April. 

This year’s MICF, the third largest comedy festival in the world, will showcase diverse comic talent both locally and internationally.

Ms Pickering is having her first-ever MICF gig, Mispronounced, this year.

“I don’t expect to have a sell-out show straight away. It’s more about building up my confidence as a new comic,” she said.

“The comedy festival provides me with a great platform but at the same time it’s also easy to get lost in the crowd because there are so many talents each year,” Ms Pickering said.

“So the comics really need to put in work before the festival to get the word out.”

Award-winning songwriter-turned comedian Geraldine Quinn is in her 13th year at MICF 2018.

She said MICF gave equal opportunity to both established and emerging comics.

“The festival doesn’t feel generational at all. There are artists from all ages and backgrounds,” Ms Quinn said.

This year she is bringing her new show Queen Bitch to the Malthouse Theatre where she will be performing in a cabaret style.

“My genre of comedy, mixed with music, is very fringe. After these many years, I can turn around and see these people, who I used to see on television and who are now my peers. It just feels amazing,” she said.

Mr Capper is delivering his fifth gig at MICF, called Quantum Bad Boy, and is also hosting female comedian night Upfront at Town Hall on April 18.

He said Melbourne’s artistic environment facilitated the emergence and growth of new comics and artists.

“Melbourne is very nurturing of arts. People here are very supportive of comedies and other art forms. But they also have high standards and expectations, which force you to advance,” he said.

“Every year, comedians come from all over the world for MICF. So it’s a wonderful opportunity to meet international comedians and mingle with and learn from them,” Mr Capper said.

He said even though the content of each night’s show was the same, it could be every challenging for the comedian to keep very single performance lively.

“The material has to be good enough to liven up every night. You are in competition with big international stars so you always have to move forward,” he said.

The festival runs from March 28 to April 22. More information can be found at comedyfestival.com.au

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