Two word review: Fountain o’youth.
Hugs achieved: x 1
The alleyway through which you enter Club Voltaire Comedy on a cold and windy Melbourne night might seem a little daunting for newcomers (like myself) but one should not be put off. The entrance, located at 14 Raglan Street North Melbourne, is not hard to find and just up a few flights of stairs, you are welcomed to the comedy club.
The night kicks off at 7:30pm but if you get there early you can grab a drink and even sit alongside the comedians, who chat amongst themselves pre-gig in the intimate venue.
On the bill for Club Voltaire Comedy on 10 July were Rob Caruana (MC), Roland Hoffman, Kimberly Lisle, Angus Gordon, Mitch Garling, Clara Cupcakes, Kirsty Webeck, Nikko Maylon, Sarah Jones, Michael Tancredi and Alex Ward.
For what was a jam-packed evening of comedy, below are some personal highlights for my first night at Club Voltaire Comedy.
Where to begin? Clara. Cupcakes. With a name like that, where can you go wrong? Clara Cupcakes has developed, and I imagine, continues to develop, a character on stage that is both eye-catching and engaging. Clara appeared to have a sweet yet maniacal disposition through which she delivered a set very suited to the quick turn-over pace of the evening. With a straightforward set up, Clara had an excellent stage presence with rolling jokes throughout her set. Even without the flashy ending, Clara gave a memorable performance.
This piece may prove to be a written example of my poor judgement of character but Sarah Jones appeared to be a genuinely nice, knowledgeable, and perhaps most importantly in this scenario, funny person. I do not know Sarah in the 'real world' but after her set on Sunday night, I want to. Not all audiences are partial to ventriloquism but I respect it as a craft when executed well! Sarah had solid comedic timing, to the point where you start to question her sanity just a bit (I didn’t really, but she’s good)! What made Sarah’s performance standout for the evening was her titbits about the history of ventriloquism which complimented her set well.
I had a great time seeing a bunch of comedians for the first time and hearing where their comedy minds were at. Without judgement, there were a couple of moments throughout the night where I thought of the New York Times piece with Jerry Seinfeld from a few years ago titled ‘How to write a joke’. I have no insight into how much of the material performed on Sunday night was new. However, I felt there were a few moments where a comedy thread could be pulled further, where a unique concept or idea could have even been the feature of an entire five-minute set. Strictly coming from an audience’s perspective, I would encourage the comedians who did not get the desired level of laughter to not reject or discard unique or interesting premises, rather to pull at the thread until there is no more humour to be gained from it.
Thanks Club Voltaire Comedy and all the guys behind the scenes running the show (particularly Murphy)! Great work and we’ll see you next time!