Australia’s adopted son, comedian Arj Barker, has just completed his tour of duty in Brisbane on the Turbine Platform at the Powerhouse. I’m sorry to say his final show was Sunday December 13th and now he’s moved to Canberra, which isn’t much help for the Brisbanites who didn’t know he was here. Keep an eye on his schedule for next year because if he returns, it’ll be well worth the wait.
Stand-up comedy doesn’t usually appeal to me and I wouldn’t normally suggest an outing to the local venues to endure that uneasy, cringe-worthy feeling you get when the comedian cracks a joke and no one finds it funny. But Arj Barker has made a name for himself here and his stints on Flight of the Conchords are really entertaining. When I saw that he was coming to the Powerhouse this month I thought this would be a great idea for my company’s end of year party to which we also invited our valued customers.
We started the night with a few drinks and nibbles down at Watt Modern Dining, a great venue with spectacular views of the river. The show kicked off at 7.00pm with the support act who did a great job of warming the crowd up. Enter Arj Barker and the roof lifted. For the first 25 minutes of his hour-long show I could not put a stop to my hysterical laughter. Don’t ask me what was so funny…he’s a little like Seinfeld – it was really a show about nothing. Maybe that’s what was so appealing to me – it didn’t sound scripted and it flowed well. There were no uncomfortable silences and I suspect most people in the audience could relate to his ill-fated experiences and took pleasure in laughing at them.
The second half of the show dipped a little on the laughter scale but it was still thoroughly enjoyable. The tickets were reasonably priced at 40 bucks a pop and my guests were chuffed to have been invited to an event that wasn’t stuffy and didn’t involve having to make too much small talk with people they didn’t know. If you’ve not witnessed any of Arj Barker’s material, I’d recommend a DVD purchase, whether it be his stand up stuff or Flight of the Conchords.