Comedy Commutes is bringing the Melbourne International Comedy Festival to your doorstep

Comedy Commutes is bringing the Melbourne International Comedy Festival to your doorstep

Kirsty Webeck
Words by Claire Morley

Unable to make your way downtown this year? The Melbourne International Comedy Festival is bringing the fun to you.

It’s been almost exactly a year since COVID-19 changed all our lives – stripping us of our social freedom and confining us to our homes. And what a time to reflect on how far we’ve come since last March; Tom Hanks has well and truly recovered, Daniel Andrews has expanded his wardrobe beyond North Face, and we’re finally able to actually leave our homes.

But perhaps most importantly, this year, unlike the last, the Melbourne International Comedy Festival will make its return.

And with it comes the initiative Comedy Commutes – a new event series bringing the comedy to your doorstep. With punters spending more time than ever at home, or within their own neighbourhood, with working from home now a commonality, we’re not always capable of venturing into the city these days.

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Melbourne International Comedy Festival understands this, realising a trek into the city isn’t always necessary in order to have a good time. As a result, each weekend of the Melbourne International Comedy Festival (and one Thursday), Comedy Commutes will bring the fun to you.

In its inaugural year, each evening of the event will see a lineup of splendid comedic talents make the commute to some of Melbourne’s favourite local venues.

From Broadmeadows to Moorabbin, and a whole host of spots in between, each evening features four acts, headed up by a cracking MC. With some of the biggest names in the Australian comedy scene, some international favourites, and a few of the hottest and freshest new faces, it’s most certainly the most fun you can have without leaving the suburbs.

The lineups are made up of a selection of more than 25 comedians, including local favourites Ben Knight, Ivan Aristeguieta, Luke Heggie, Cassie Workman, Alex Ward and cabaret Queen Dolly Diamond, as well as international acts like Japan’s Takashi Wakasugi. Each show will run for two hilarious hours.

The Comedy Commutes kick off on Friday March 26 at the Broadmeadows Town Hall, the most northerly location of the event, and will be hosted by Nazeem Hussain. He’ll be joined by Bev Killick, Annie Louey, Dane Simpson, and comic and dancer, Carl Donnelly from the UK.

A little closer to Melbourne’s CBD, the very next evening at Thornbury Theatre, MC Dane Simpson will head up proceedings, with a lineup featuring Workman, David Quirk, Donnelly and everyone’s favourite Australian baking show host, Claire Hooper.

Alongside these venues, the MICF Comedy Commutes will run three shows at Howler in Brunswick across two nights on Thursday April 1 and Friday April 2, a show at Hawthorn Arts Centre on Friday April 9, and two shows at The Espy on Saturday April 10.

Elsewhere, Moorabbin’s Kingston Arts Centre will be putting on a show on Friday April 16, while the Footscray Community Arts Centre will bring the Comedy Commutes to a close with two events on Saturday April 17.

Other names set to appear across the dates include Michelle Brasier, Josh Glanc, Georgie Carroll, Blake Freeman, Randy Feltface, Bob Franklin, Kirsty Webeck and more.

In 2021, Melbourne International Comedy Festival has got you covered no matter the direction on the compass, or side of the river, you’re on. The best part? You’ll be home and in bed before you know it!

Comedy Commutes goes down as part of Melbourne International Comedy Festival on Fridays and Saturdays (and one Thursday) from March 26 til April 17. Find out more here.