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Australian comedian Hannah Gadsby’s acclaimed show “Nanette” coming to NYC

photo Alan Moyle
photo Alan Moyle

Australian comedian Hannah Gadsby will bring her award-winning show “Nanette” to NYC for a five-week run at the Soho Playhouse from Mar 9, 2018 – Apr 15, 2018. Tickets are on sale now. “Nanette” is actually her goodbye to comedy — she’s leaving the business after 10 years, saying, “there’s only so long I can pretend not to be serious.” It deals frankly with growing up gay in Tasmania where homosexuality was illegal until 1997. It won Best Show at Edinburgh Fringe and here’s part of The Telegraph‘s review:

As Gadsby explains, comedy is all about tension and release; set up and punchline. A good joke immediately diffuses an atmosphere. It is why she has spent her life, even before she got into stand-up, making jokes about homophobia. Well, not any more; there is no release here. “I have a responsibility to make you laugh,” she says at one point. “But I’m not in the mood.”

To prove this, Gadsby re-tells a story she used in her early stand-up shows about the time in her teens when a man confused her for a bloke and accused her of flirting with his girlfriend. Only in Nanette, she finally adds in the crucial bit about him putting his boot into her face time and time again, even after he realised his mistake, calling her a “female poofter”. Now you realise how Gadsby must have felt as people laughed at the edited version of this horrific story, night after night.

It’s not quite true to say that there are no laughs in this show, which won the main award at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival earlier this year and is tipped to do the same in Edinburgh. When it is funny, it is very funny indeed. Gadsby, who is so assured on stage, dismisses the Gay Pride flag as a “bit busy”, and takes great delight in picking apart the sexism that courses through art history. She damns Picasso for having a relationship with a 17-year-old girl but, as she points out, that’s OK because he invented cubism.

You can watch video of Hannah from the 2017 Melbourne International Comedy Festival (where “Nanette” also won Best Show) below.

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