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Sarah Britten

@ Sunday Times Books LIVE

A Moosa good show

I saw Riaad Moosa’s one man show, Strictly Halaal, on Saturday night, and was very impressed. It can’t be easy to fill such a big theatre, yet tickets were sold out for this show and all of the others.

There was a lot of new material (probably the biggest challenge for local comedians), though the joke that got the biggest laugh was one of his old ones: “The only time an Indian holds a rugby ball is when he’s putting a price on it.”

I dragged my moaning husband along – he wasn’t a fan before the show, but was soon converted. He’d seen Moosa on Laugh Out Loud and did not rate him. He did observe that Riaad was better than Mansfield and Darren Simpson put together, but that’s not saying much.

His favourite Moosa joke: “Starting a war in Iraq to achieve peace is like making a porno to promote abstinence.”

He used a much more physical style than we’ve seen before and overall he came across as polished and confident. His accents are excellent, especially his take on a South African who comes back from two weeks in London. He even sings pretty well (Phumzile Mlambo-Ngquka singing, “I believe I can fly” was priceless). If I wore a topee I’d take it off to you, Riaad.

Chris Forrest, the warm up act, is one of my favourite stand up comics. His style is all feigned awkwardness and deadpan delivery. His boep comes in handy for the self-deprecating joke: “I’m really good in bed. I can sleep until noon. I can guarantee that if I’m on top, you’re going to moan.”

My favourite Chris Forrest joke of the evening: “In Durban, Jacob Zuma has more support than the Sharks, probably because he scores more often.”


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