‘Bafunny’ a kick in the funny bone, but not a killer

2010-06-07 08:51

The Bafunny Bafunny squad went for gold at the fully-packed

Carnival City Big Top Arena in Johannesburg and certainly won the match. But it

came short of winning the tournament.

Team members Barry Hilton, Mark Banks, Loyiso Gola, Nik Rabinowitz,

Kagiso Lediga, John Vlismas, Trevor Noah and Marc Lottering put on a hilarious

show centred around the question “Who would represent South Africa at the World

Cup of Funny?”

As could be expected, Benni McCarthy, the vuvuzela and the national

anthem all made an appearance on the list of topics, but World Cup was not the

main subject, thankfully.

Hilton was a more than competent emcee for the night.

First in the line-up was Banks, whose brand of slapstick physical

humour was a great warm-up to a night of sore ribs.

Gola was the only brave soul to venture into serious topics such as

the Gaza conflict, and it worked because the audience came up laughing.

Lottering’s anecdotes of life on the Cape Flats as well as Lediga’s

narration of his fear of Zulus were a treat for the socially-aware South


But every team has its big stars and Thursday night Rabinowitz with

his fluent Xhosa and detailed knowledge of black South African idiosyncrasies,

as well as Noah, whose innovative way of looking at the national anthem, earned

them the lion’s share of guffaws at the arena.

However, this show will not go down as the definitive pre-World Cup

comedy show.

The flow of laughter was inconsistent, both in depth and length,

despite the performers bringing their A-Game.

The standard was such that the tears did well up in one’s eyes, but

did not pour down the cheeks.

Perhaps if they had narrowed the number of players down to five or

six as opposed to eight, the performers would have had more time to hook the

audience and kill it.

But maybe it was just that the audience was hampered from laughing

to their hearts’ content because Carnival City decided to turn on fans inside a

cold arena and activate the heaters outside by the parking lot instead.


» Bafunny Bafunny tours the

country until July 5.

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