American comedian Jim Gaffigan on coming to SA: ‘I’m just so excited to come down and explore’

Jim Gaffigan (Photo: Getty)
Jim Gaffigan (Photo: Getty)

Cape Town - Grammy nominated comedian, actor, writer and producer Jim Gaffigan is coming to South Africa for a two-date tour which will stop in Johannesburg at the Teatro Theatre, Montecasino on Friday 28 December 2018, and in Cape Town at the CTICC, Auditorium 1, on Saturday, 5 January 2019.

The talented father-of-five is known around the world for his unique brand of humour which is largely observational. 

Jim’s stand-up tour is titled Fixer Upper and has had dates in the USA, Turkey, Germany, Greece, Canada, Thailand, Singapore, Japan, Taiwan and South Korea.

Ahead of the local tour dates Jim spoke to Channel24 about coming to South Africa, what his plans are away from the stage while he’s here and so much more about his comedic inspirations. 


About coming to Johannesburg and Cape Town, with his family Jim said: “Well, I’ve always wanted to come to South Africa, you know when this album was released, the idea was always to do shows. I wanted to make sure that I could bring my kids when I go down there so, when I looked into the possibility of doing these two shows, I (realised) it was worth the life experience to bring my kids down.“

Here’s what the comedian is going to do when he’s away from the stage in SA: “We are definitely going to go on safari. We’ve planned that out. It’s going to be a family adventure. Which we love doing; like over Thanksgiving I did a show in Athens and my family came over. So, we’ve done this before. We’re really excited to submerge ourselves in South African culture. “

Jim added that he and his family forego traditional American experiences when they’re abroad in favour of embracing the local way of life. He explained: “Yeah (when we were in Greece), the hotel offered a traditional Thanksgiving, but we wanted to have an authentic Athens experience. Like we had a Greek band class, instead (of a more American meal), on Thanksgiving night. It was more about moving away from tradition. We wanted to just experience Greece. And that will be our same approach in South Africa.”

This is where Jim draws his material from: “My last comedy special, dealt with my wife being diagnosed with a brain tumour and I worked through a lot. I have all new material now, but it was then that I learnt that these experiences are all, relatively, universal. The shared experience of being a human is truly so absurd, so trying to find the humour in that is always fun. Whether it’s opening for the Pope, to my wife’s brain tumour, to getting doughnuts as a gift, it’s all life experiences as I look back at my specials.”

The 52-year-old also spoke to us about, how he deals with tough crowds saying: “Stand-up comedy is very much a conversation with the audience. It’s like having a conversation with a friend; if your friend is in a weird space, you address it. That’s some of what I would say, but you deal with it differently in each situation, with each crowd.”

About his knowledge of the South African comedy scene, Jim said: “I’m familiar with Trevor (Noah); I’ve been on The Daily Show, but that’s all going to be part of my research. To find South African comedy specials and really immerse myself into the culture and getting to understand South African comedy."

To end off, Jim only had one message for his local fans: “I’m just so excited to come down and explore and learn more about South Africa.”

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Date: Friday 28 December 2018 

Venue: Teatro Theatre Montecasino


Date: Saturday 5 January 2019 

Venue: CTICC, Auditorium 1

Tickets start from R450 and available from Computicket.