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'Married At First Fight' is a hilarious take on reality TV's most laughable program

Reality TV has well and truly dominated our television screens for the past decade, with aspiring “influencers” stealing the limelight from talented actors and comedians across the country.

Now, seasoned comedy veteran Matt Byrne is fighting back. Byrne celebrates 22 years of presenting fringe comedies with a topical and fresh take on the idea of marrying at first sight and tying the knot in general.

Married At First Fight will be Byrne’s fourth Melbourne International Comedy Festival show, from Bouncers, Shakers, Barrackers and WAGS, and he is excited to bring the show direct from Adelaide.

“I love bringing my fringe shows to Melbourne. We’ve had a lot of fun here over the years and with Married at First Sight still winning the ratings, it’s obvious people love seeing people suffer in instant disillusionment of marriage”.

The show mercilessly pokes fun at reality TV dating programs like Married at First Sight, but what does it have to say about marriage itself? “Half of marriages end in divorce,” Byrne says, but he is quick to reassure that the show is really a “fun look at marriage and weddings”.

Married At First Fight features a cast of four experienced comedy performers with a musical theatre background, with two of its cast members, Brad Butvila and Amber Platten, ironically getting married next year. The show draws on the theatrical experience and versatile skills of the cast, as they play up to ten characters.

“You'll meet the bridesmaids, the parents, the celebrant, four wisecracking and inebriated Irish priests, the cast of Studio Tense and many more”. The talented cast not only spend their time onstage switching roles, but perform various musical numbers too.

The premise of the show sees Val Salmon (Rose Vallen) looking to hook hubby number eight, Kylie Cleavage (Amber Platten) wanting a man who loves her for her mind, Barry Bigtime (Brad Butvila) seeking fiance number sixteen, and Ron Turn (Byrne) looking for a new wife after losing his first wife of 38 years – she went out for milk one day and never came back.

If you’ve ever wondered what happens after the reality TV cameras stop rolling, then Byrne has the answer in his show. “People get so hung up on the marriage, they forget about what comes next, the [actual] marriage.” Expect a rowdy night of comedy with some unexpected moments of deep reflection on “the world’s oldest institution”.

Director Matt Byrne invites the audience to spend the interactive evening in laughter, and says the cast’s ability to improv and interact with the audience really makes the show extra-special. The show runs for two hours, longer than the typical comedy festival show, however held at the Lithuanian Club there’s a chance for you to grab a drink at the bar during interval.

People love to hate reality television, for many of us it’s a guilty pleasure that we just can’t seem to break up with. Many of Byrne’s shows (My Kitchen Fools and Hott Property included) have been inspired by reality TV, so how would he feel if it came to an end?

“It would be sad for me because it’s inspired so many shows of mine”. Whether you’re a super-fan or a hater of reality television, Byrne guarantees that you will love Married At First Fight and even learn a thing or two about marriage.

So put on your best wedding outfit and get ready for a night of laughs, drama and even a surprise wedding (which Byrne plants on unsuspecting audience members).

Married At First Fight runs until Saturday March 23 and then from Tuesday March 26 until Saturday March 30. Grab your tickets via the Matt Byrne Media website.