Tuesday, 5 April 2011

Brooch for a Comedian's Mother

It's Melbourne International Comedy Festival time, when the city heaves with performers trying to make you laugh. 

This week's guest blog post is by Melbourne jewellery creator Ali Alexander, explaining the pendant she created in connection with the annual laugh fest, and giving her top festival picks...

During the Comedy Festival one year I noticed a lot of visiting comedians hanging around town during the day. I figured that however wacky and zany they were, they all had mothers that were normal, and they all needed to buy their mothers a present from Melbourne. I thought I could make something for them, and The Brooch for a Comedian’s Mother (pictured above) was the result.

I recognised them because I like to go and see a few shows every festival. The way I choose who to go and see starts with where they are playing. I like to go to places I wouldn’t normally find myself in; I figure even if the comedy isn’t hilarious, I’ve been somewhere interesting. That includes the Melbourne Town Hall, (especially the Council Chambers and the Peter Cook Bar - which has no shows but does have beer) and Trades Hall.

This year at Trades Hall I am going to see Rod Quantock. Yes he’s been around a long time, but he is good at it and the Bella Union bar is always fascinating. The Croft Institute is a bit cold and ‘science blocky’ for a quiet drink, but I think it will be perfect for a show with guinea pigs.

A friend from the country tells me that the Victoria Hotel advertises on country television and that’s why it’s always full of country folk. I enjoy seeing things there and I’ve enjoyed Smart Casual in showcases so I’ll go and see their Story of Captain Entree.

The Swiss Club is a fun kind of place, it’s good to plan your time so you can enjoy the restaurant before you go to the gig. Hannah Gadsby is playing there and I hope to see her if there are any tickets left for her show Mrs Chuckles after her success on ABC TV's Adam Hills in Gordon Street Tonight.

I’ve never heard of Simon Keck but he’s playing at Madame Brussels; and as I usually just sit on the balcony there, I’m curious to see another part of the place.

The last time I went to the Athenaeum it was to see the Scared Weird Little Guys, I was in the VERY top row in a corner. It's very high in there and scary going up and down the stairs, but I laughed a lot so I am going to see them this time in their final tour.

Maybe I’ll see you at one of these places in April!

The Brooch for a Comedian’s Mother can be viewed in more detail at Ali Alexander's website.