Columns

Tuesday
Jul292014

Pearls of wisdom

just got a phone call from my friend Cass. She’s a jewellery designer. (Yes all my friends have jobs like this.)

“Dev, I’ve found a pearl to match. It’s $150 which is really cheap. The other ones were all close to $400.”

“Just match the pearl so the earrings are the same. Money is no object.”

“Money is no object.”  Yes, I actually said that. Don’t judge me!

All right DO judge me.

Kinda odd don’t you think? A freelancer artist single mum paying $150 for a pearl to be made into an earring to replace the one I lost? And that’s not even mounted and made! We’re talking $250 all up. That’s four tanks of petrol, five take away dinners for my family. A great donation to a worthy cause. But here I am spending in one earring! I’m ashamed. Don’t look at me, I’m hideous.

Tuesday
Jul292014

The Stupidest Study Ever 

Attention smart sheilas and dumb blokes!

There’s good news and there’s bad news. 

Good news is there’s a new study on relationships. Because god knows the world would burst into flames if a day went past and we didn’t have another bunch of nerds in white coats carrying clipboards telling us what their fancy so called science has to say about our choice of shag. Which can usually be summarized as ‘Your entire life has been a huge mistake, you have no one to blame but yourself, it’s too late to start over so you may as well just kill yourself.’

The bad news is that Natalie Portman is wrong.

I know. Catch your breath, make yourself a hot drink and wrap yourself in a blanket. It will pass. Eventually. 
Thursday
Mar202014

Melbourne International Comedy Festival 2014, Dev’s Must See MICF 2014 Top Picks.

I fucking LOVE Melbourne International Comedy Festival so much that for 20 years, despite being a comedian I didn’t perform in it. Instead I’d spend my nights seeing stuff. The record was 37 shows one festival. Which included a 2am secret Daniel Kitson/David O’Doherty show in Old Council Chambers Trades Hall (the room my show The Trollhunter is in this year). 

Running on café lattes, no sleep and Smith Crisps my girlfriend Caitlin and I would dare each other ‘just one more…’ and then be hospitalized for exhaustion for the three weeks after festival.

Plenty of time to sleep when you’re dead.

Even when I’m doing a show (like this year) I attempt to see as many shows as I perform. 

My rule of thumb. Put together a few nights of three shows a night. Someone you know, someone you’ve heard of and a total random you know bugger all about. Don’t research! Go in cold knowing nothing. 

I also put together a few ‘Wedding Nights’.

Something old (an established comic),

Something new (some fresh meat),

Something borrowed (international),

Something blue (transgressive, sweary, NSFW).

A week before festival people ALWAYS ask me what to see. So here’s my annual Dev’s Must See MICF 2014 Top Picks. 

Miss Itchy

Cult, out there, bizarre, the two dumpy creepy ladies, Miss Gerda and Miss Candy Girl are back after a ten-year hiatus. This award winning cry for help will scratch your itches, blow the cobwebs out of you heads and scare the fuck out of you. Top night out. Take your nan.

The Boy with Tape On His Face     

Want something to take the whole family to?  This is it. Just go. You’re welcome. 

Rhys Nicholson

Really hitting his mark and finding his voice after a few years poncing on stage, go see Dirty Uncle Rhys. A cross between Pee Wee Herman and your wrongest most perverted best friend he’ll give you a glimpse of life from the perspective of a gay pervert in your 20s. Happy ending guaranteed. 

Stella Young

For years and years we’ve all been nagging comedian, cripple and all round good time girl Stella Young to do a show. But she’s been too busy being brilliant, being a crip and swinging from chandeliers to find the time. Finally she’s decided to shut us all up and has crafted an hour of laughs, stories and smackdowns. Quite a buzz about this one. 

Joel Creasey

His third or fourth one man show this delightful homosexual from Perth who was run out of town in Colac for being gay will ring your bells, float your boat and talk about Meryl Streep. A lot. You have been warned. And he'll sing. And if you don't laugh and clap, he'll cry and throw shit. 

Nelly Thomas

The only regret of this year’s festival is that Nelly and I’s shows clash so I’ll miss it. Smart, funny and what a babe she will push you out of your comfort zone and wrap you up in a warm blanket of shit hot comedy. Get ready to piss yourself. And think.

Upfront

All girls. All live. Every year for the last MICF puts together an all star line up for one night only at Melbourne Town Hall. I was in the very first and I’m thrilled to be in the line up again this year along with, Nelly Thomas, Celia Pacquola, Kate McLennan, Jennifer Wong, Felicity Ward, Em Rusciano, Mel Buttle, Hannah Gadsby, Cal Wilson, Rebecca De Unamuno, Anne Edmonds, Sarah Kendall, Miss Itchy plus more!

Wil Anderson

The man is a master. This has to be close to his 20th MICF show. Watch an accomplished comedian take an audience, weave a spell and take an audience of bogans to bourgeois on a wild ride of perfect one liners, hilarious anecdotes and cultural commentary. If you’ve never seen him, do. If you have, see him again.

Anne Edmonds

Anne is one of Australia’s most exciting new stand up, character and banjo playing comedians. She’s been at it for a few years and has made a huge jump with numerous telly gigs and Anne’s a YouTube sensation with her ABC produced video ‘Raylene The Racist’ attracting over 60,000 hits. Go see. 

The Listies

Looking for a family show that’s not childish, patronizing and will have you all fully coughing your lungs up, this is it. I hate kids entertainment. But I LOVE The Listies. 

Felicity Ward

Not many comedians are as committed and accomplished as Felicity. Award winning, hard working and skilled she ticks all the boxes.  Her shows are always surprising and thoroughly rehearsed, tested and thought out. This year’s  is going to be a pearler. 

Dave O’Neil

20 years he and I have been in the business and he gets better and better and better. Such a safe pair of hands. Solid, well written and warm. Dave ponders whether things really were better back in his day. A time when it was less Twitter more Twister, less X-factor more X-Men and absolutely no Kyle, Seal or Redfoo.

Adrienne Truscott

Adrienne Truscott, one-half of the infamous Wau Wau Sisters, dressed only from the waist up and ankles down, undoes and does in the rules and rhetoric about rape, comedy and the awkward laughs in between. This is one for the people who like their lungs bursting and their buttons pushed. Adrienne performs every rape joke she has ever heard wearing no pants. Heard good things. A bit afraid. Strap yourself in.

Dave Callan

Dave Callan's show A Little Less Conversation is one of the best comedy shows, or shows full stop I have ever seen. I saw it last year and had show envy. Do. Please. It's a masterpiece.

Fiona O'Loughlin

She is the naughtiest aunt in the world. The personification of the greatest Australian comedy has to offer, irreverent, unapologetic and the hero of her own novel. This mother of five originally from Alice Springs goes there. And takes you with her. Her show about her battle with alcohol was one of the greatest theatrical experiences I’ve ever had. I have seen every show she has done and they just get better and better.

Hannah Gadsby’s NGV tours

Hannah is an obscenely talented, terrifyingly sharp comedian. With a degree in fine art. 

You heard me.

Sold out for five years in a row, Hannah’s informatively hilarious NGV shows have developed a cult following. This time round she is remounting three of her classic NGV Art Lectures.

These tours sell out. Take a mate, have a ball and get some culture into you.  Born in Tasmania Hannah’s tours are the quintessential MICF experience. 

This year's wild card? Go see Jordana Borensztain. You'll thank me. 

My show is Catherine Deveny-The Trollhunter, a collaboration with star Guardian columnist, Ikea enthusiast and award winning theatre maker n Badham. It is by far the best thing I’ve ever done. It’s a smack down, stand-up fairytale about online trolls, misogyny, anonymous internet haters and Attorney General George ‘Brandy’ Brandis’ and other Liberal party.  It’s OMG, LOL and NSFW and uses actual material sent to us by actual real live trolls. I wear a costume specifically designed for the show by costume genius Bryn Meredith (who worked on the King Kong puppet).

This is my fourth one woman show and after 22 years of doing stand up I reckon I’ve finally gotten the hang of it. The best thing I have ever done. Book now. Will sell out.

Saturday
Mar082014

International Women's Day 2014. Do we still need IWD? 

I have written many pieces over the years about International Women's Day. Even one on 'vajazzling' and why teenage girls should be encouraged to say fuck.

This year I would like to share with you some of my favorite's from The Women's Role (published 1983), a best of book that records examples of the constant barrage of comments which perpetrate the all-pervasive system of discrimination against women.

You're welcome. 



This year I only have three things to say;

1. This is not about women verses men, this is about us versus the arseholes. (Come see Trollhunter my Melbourne Comedy Festival Show, a collaboration with Van Badham about misogyny, internet trolls and online haters. it's OMG, LOL and NSFW) 

2. The worst thing you can encourage girls to be is nice, the second worst pretty. (See you all at Pushy Women North Sunday March 16 Thornbury Theatre.) 

3. Religion is another word for patriarchy. Check out my Atheist Alphabet Kickstarter. It's a (celebration of Melbourne, life, truth, bikes, dogs and big bottomed girls.) 

Friday
Feb142014

Why I ride a bike 

Catherine Deveny has an easy answer when asked why she rides her bike everywhere. “It’s faster than walking, safer than driving, cheaper than public transport and it’s the closest thing to flying.”

Riding a bike is simply the happiest, most life-affirming and convenient way to get from A to B. But when you are on a bike A to B is more likely to end up being A to B, C, D, E and F on the way to G.

The cycle-mad Dutch have a saying about riding in the wet: “You are not made of sugar.”

I’ll leave my house for a gig in the city and drop in the library books, nip in and check out that frock in the shop window, pick up some curry paste and a bunch of flowers, post a letter, grab a coffee and still get to where I’m going faster and happier than I would have any other way. Parking? Nailed it.

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