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Comic encounters with life’s absurdities

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to nik rabinowitz by jonx pillemer

STAND UP
DIRECTOR: Brent Palmer
CAST: Nik Rabinowitz and Kagiso Mokgadi
VENUE: The Baxter Concert Hall
UNTIL: January 11
RATING: ***

 

Reviewing a Nik Rabinowitz show seems such a moot point – he’s funny and that is pretty much what you are looking for in a stand-up show.

He’s back at the Baxter and well worth the visit because he has new material.

In case you need reminding, Rabinowitz is the guy who does accents and impersonations so well because he speaks more than one language.

So, don’t be too surprised when he starts warbling in another tongue. He restricted himself to English this time around, though throwing in the odd word to mystify the poor woman in the front on opening night.

There’s always one – some person who gets picked on through-out the show because they are the likely target for a joke. While he’s not mean, he does make you wish you were not in the front row.

The lady on opening night is not from here, which just served as a reminder that humour is context- and reference-based and if you don’t get the references, it does leave you a bit in the dark.

This time Rabinowitz starts talking about what it was like having coloured builders around the house and listening in on his toddler’s conversation with the people wandering around his space.

He follows a conversational style, but as he points out, our country’s politics offer ripe pickings for any comedians with ears.

He casually interrupts himself as he remembers something else that is funny, or ironic, or ironically funny about living in this country, all the while shining a light on life’s absurdities.

His social commentary cuts across class, race, gender and age so there is something for everyone to laugh at, and learning to laugh at yourself is a good thing.

The PG16 age restriction reflects a certain bluntness of language which you really don’t want to have to explain to the little ones.

For this season Rabinowitz is preceded by KG (Kagiso Mokgadi). He warms up the crowd with a long, rambling story with a funny pay-off – a teaser of what’s to come when he returns to the Baxter in March for a solo show.

On the downside, even with a support act, the show seemed rather short. Then again, they’re both funny enough to make time fly.

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