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Hofmeyr to feel heat from comic hosts

TV & Radio

They say too many cooks spoil the broth. But what if it’s a roast? Then it would be nice to get as many funny people as you can.

Comedy roasts have been a staple of the American diet about as much as McDonald’s has been. Now it’s SA’s turn to jump on to the bandwagon in a mainstream way. That becomes a reality in the form of The Comedy Central Roast of Steve Hofmeyr which will play on, as the title suggests, DStv’s Comedy Central Channel next month.

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As is tradition with every roast, the series of scathing attacks on one’s character and career and just about everything in-between has to to have a funny host.

To help facilitate the roast on Hofmeyr, the only chop that hasn’t been on a braai stand yet, Comedy Central has recruited SA comedy’s golden boy, Trevor Noah.

The roasters will include stand-up comedians John Vlismas, Casper de Vries and David Kau, radio and TV personality Anele Mdoda, writer and TV presenter Kuli Roberts, actress Shaleen Surtie-Richards, model and TV presenter Minki van der Westhuizen and actor Robert Whitehead.

Whitehead had already told Comedy Central that “some people say Steve is a lazy, talentless, sexist, racist Neil Diamond wannabe. I beg to differ. He’s definitely not lazy”.

When I phoned the Isidingo actor about his involvement in the show that will be filmed for television at The Lyric Theatre at Gold Reef City on September 11, Whitehead said: “I am deeply ashamed but I have to pay my dentist.”

Surtie-Richards isn’t ashamed to be a roaster at all. “I’m not really a fan of roasts,” she said. “I said ‘yes’ to being part of this because it’s someone like Steve who is up first. When I say I’ll do something, I commit.”

While she acknowledged that roasts, by their nature, are incredibly personal in their inspiration for gags, Surtie-Richards emphasised that “I don’t feel that bad about myself that I need to bring someone else down to feel good about myself. But I like to try new things. I’ve known Steve for quite a while. We met while I was still at Egoli”.

The well-known screen and stage veteran laughs when asked if she’ll be sad that people are picking on her friend. “No, I know everyone has their own opinion but I am looking forward to what other people are going to say. I also want to compare how our roast will be against the ones in America. You know, Americans are the rudest people ever. I sit there watching and they’re just laughing at everything and I wonder: ‘What’s so funny about vulgarities?’ Not that I don’t swear, but you know what I mean.”

She may not go down the swearing route when it comes to roasting the highly opinionated Hofmeyr, but she insists that “you’ll have to wait to see what I am going to say”. What she can tell us for now is: “I admire Steve for this. He’s showing that he’s a star and a good sport for even agreeing to be roasted.” We can’t wait.

 

• The Comedy Central Roast of Hofmeyr will air on Comedy Central (DStv Channel 122) on September 24 at 9pm. To attend the show, book at Computicket.

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