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May 11, 2009 | by  | in Opinion Theatre |
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Kitten Brides

I find it empowering to watch female comedians. Some of my favourite comedians are males, but there’s some sort of aura encircling women who stand up in front of a crowd and just be themselves.

After an epic booming introduction over the speakers, female Irish comedian Maeve Higgins bounces onto the stage and introduces herself. I wondered when her ‘act’ was going to begin, and gradually as she chatted away, I realised that this was it.

Maeve is a fun bubbly personality and her relaxed style is refreshingly enjoyable.

She covers a range of personal themes—her cats, her embarrassing childhood memories and being dumped.

Maeve says she’s not political, but although never marking it as such, much of her comedy is based on women’s issues, particularly the recurring theme of body image. The substance is there if you want it, but you also have the option to sit back, without having anything thrust in your face. She begins by talking about how she photographs herself (from above, with collarbone stuck out—a trick all the “chubby girls” know). She repeatedly makes jokes of her own eating habits and in her final triumphs over her boyfriend’s return, part of her triumph is always that she has lost weight.

I generally rate stand up on how hard it makes me laugh, but this piece was a much more chilled out giggle that only reached absolute hilarity in the grand final, made up of three dream scenarios as Maeve enacts the return of her ex-boyfriend. By this point of the show, Maeve has lulled us into feeling she’s a close friend—so I am totally on her side and proud to see her victory!

Stand up comedy with Maeve Higgins as part of the NZ International Comedy Festival.
At BATS Theatre

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About the Author ()

Fiona was named "Recessionista" in the ASPA Fashion Awards 2009 for her Takaka op-shop frock and spray painted shoes. She co-edits the arts section and also likes to write about women and other stuff.

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