Roisin Conaty: Hero Warrior Fireman Liar | Melbourne International Comedy Festival 2011

The best comedy is unexpected. So I should have known we were in for a good night when arriving at the Melbourne Town Hall I was told that the 8.15 show I intended on seeing was just about to end as it had begun, contrary to the press release, at 7.00pm. However, the show that I was instead allocated to was the very intimate adventures of Roisin Conaty. An English lass with a penchant for Ugg boots (unsympathetically called ‘scragggy’ by a member of the audience) she delivered a rollicking hour of personal successes and failures that have filled the past 31 years of her life.

The warm up act by Jackie Hump (aka Roisin Conaty) was a bizarre mix of ‘poetry, grow-etry and flow-etry’ as well as the first instalment of a future show that threatens to have 6000 mimes (don’t worry there was only time for one in this act though) and after a relatively tuneful rendition of a song about winning monopoly the show began.

To Conaty’s credit she kept it simple and truthful and her strange adventures were certainly … well apart from being very strange (especially the story of her alter ego Creepy who rears his jealous head whenever a potential attractive male appears) were very familiar stories to many of the audience. Jokes about childhood, heartache and even Safeway all made an appearance and were fresh and unadulterated enough to be very funny. While the first ten minutes were rather lukewarm, Conaty quickly ‘limbered’ up and soon enough was delivering a very sharp and highly memorable performance.

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