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I'm three days away from (realistically) 25 days of comedy shows

Posted by Yvan J Drake, On the 23rd April 2012 Back


It's the 23rd of April. The festival officially starts in four days, on Friday night, with the Comedy Gala - though there are a couple of shows sneaking in before then, like the 7 Days Special, and the 5 Star Preview, so technically the festival starts for me on Thursday.

Where things stand at the moment, I'm three days away from (realistically) 25 days of comedy shows. During which time I plan to see over 40 shows. (46 at last planned count, but subject to change, as some tickets I haven't received yet). I'm a little scared. I'm sure it's nothing like what the comics are going through, but at the moment I'm looking at, on top of my day job (which I have managed to get some time off from). I still have some tickets to buy, I'm not sure what respite in that respect, is going to be offered by my media pass, I've got to keep blogging to keep people interested.

Over the past three months, I've secured interviews, harassed comedians, become part of the furniture at The Classic on Monday nights, for my weekly RAW blog, re-jigged my calendar several times, and planned a spontaneous trip to Wellington on my Birthday, for, of course, a night of comedy at The Fringe Bar. I've also managed to run some giveaway competitions, thanks to comedians who were willing to part with some free tickets (essentially, money out of their pocket) so that others could come to their shows. Donations that I'm very grateful for.

I've also managed to harass the wonderful people working up at the Comedy Trust, who run and manage the Comedy Festival, without getting a restraining order. The people who work there have worked some grueling hours over the last four months in preparation for this. They are saints. And for them, I am grateful, because they've helped me come up with my next goal for this festival.

I've managed to get my hands on some NZICF 2012 Posters. Big ones. Posters which are going to travel to every show with me, as well as The Classic every night, to get as many signatures as possible. Then after the conclusion of the festival, I'll be auctioning it off via TradeMe, and the proceeds from the auction (everything after the auction running costs) will go to a charity.

I'm really excited. This festival is the biggest yet. There are 23 fantastic venues in Auckland alone. I'm not going to get to see them all. I am, however, really excited to see the venues at Q on Queen Street. I've not been there further than the Box Office, but the fact that some great acts coming from overseas will be performing there, says a lot about the quality of the venue.

I will be trying to blog every night of the festival. When I am too exhausted - which I do expect to happen, or if I don't have much to say - I might move for a Video Blog. Perhaps I'll do one after every show, and just write one main blog a week, I don't know yet. There are a lot of unknowns going into this project. I'll admit that there are a lot of things I probably haven't considered, and there will be some surprises along the way.

The biggest question I get about this blog, is "Why are you doing it?" and it's a pretty fair one. It's one I've copped from my family, my partner (who is a saint, because for the last two months, essentially all I've talked about is The Festival and my Day Job), and a lot of my colleagues. I'm doing this because I love comedy. I'm doing this because I love seeing people who love entertaining. I'm doing this because I mentioned to the wonderful Lauren Whitley from the Comedy Trust in an email last year that I planned to see a show a night, and she suggested maybe I could write a blog about it, and the idea stuck. And from there it's grown to a passion. When I lived in Christchurch, I had no scope, no understanding, of just how big the comedy festival is here in NZ. I want to be able to share it's awesomeness with everyone. I want to see people get inspired by comedy, and decide that's what they want to do. That's why I'm so keen on the RAW Comedy Quest. I want to see the best. I want to see them while they're up-and-coming. And I love to laugh.

You can find the list of shows I'll be going to here: . You can email me on I would love to hear about what shows you've seen and enjoyed. I would love to see photos of you enjoying the festival. I'll blog about as much of that as I can. Though I'll be out almost every night (there are two nights I'm not seeing shows, I couldn't afford to go to the gala, and there's nothing on the first Sunday) I can't see everything, so if you go to a show and enjoy it, email me, let me know! I'll be more than happy to include reviews, and even a guest-blog or twenty, if you're keen to write one.  Or if you have an idea for a charity for me to donate the money to.

Get into it. Get excited. And GET YOUR LAUGH ON!

Yvan J Drake is a comedy fan, who has set himself a project of going to as many shows as he can during the 2012 NZ International Comedy Festival. A regular to NZ Comedy Festivals, a fan of most types of entertainment, he has decided this year to create and manage the blog, so he can share his experiences, his knowledge, his findings, and his enjoyment for those of the comedy.

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