When I arrived at the O2, venue of the show, realised that the ticket I bought stated that doors will open at 7pm and did not indicate what time the show will actually start I said a silent prayer wishing that the show would start at some point before midnight.
As scheduled, the doors opened promptly and ticket holders started going in a few minutes after 7pm. To my surprise, the first act started less than an hour later: a comedian know as “Feso”. I’ll hazard a guess that it’s an attempt to shorten the word, ‘professor’. He went down memory lane and got the show off to a good start telling anecdotes that sound really funny when being told as jokes but maybe not so funny when he was experiencing the situations he can now tell jokes about.
It was not only a night of stand-up comedy. There were rapping/singing/dancing acts as well who were mostly minor acts with the exception of Kcee. He had the honour of closing the show. Another notable singer/dancer was KWAM 1’s daughter, going by the moniker, honey B.
Julius Agwu himself entered the stage about an hour and-a-half after doors were opened much to the delight of the audience and he acknowledged the presence of the governor of Rivers state, Rotimi Ameachi, who also found himself at the receiving end of some of his gags. For instance, he took a swipe at the absence of his security details with the kind of humour he probably wouldn’t have got away with if he was a military governor. ‘His Excellency’ was a co-sponsor and a public figure who decided to leave his primary assignment of governing a state to attend a stand-up comedy event in London so he should have known what he was letting himself in for.
Julius was more of a compere, introducing other performers and slotting in gags between acts. He proved himself to be a natural as his jokes did not come across as rehearsed or forced. For instance, we all know that most African women walk as if they are listening to some music but hearing Julius say it in his own way made it sound even funnier. Perhaps his funniest joke of the night was his take on Nigerians who speak ‘bad English with a foreign accent’. The Ibo man returning from Cameroon had us all in stitches. Hilarious!
The dancing/singing/rapping went on for…, a bit too long as the audience roundly applauded the first main stand-up for the night, Dan D’ humorous. The applause was more out of relief that the comedy part of the show was finally starting.
Dan D’ humorous didn’t fail to deliver. Jokes about Sat Navs and Nigerian roads are always a hit. After him came ‘funny bone’ who took a risk with a terrorist opening line. Fortunately for him, the risk paid off. Nigerian comedians realise that ‘political correctness’ simply kills jokes and there wasn’t much of it on the night.
Also performing was ‘Senator’. His adoration of the governor was heckled by the audience so he switched gears. ‘Things that only happen in Nigeria’ quickly made the heckling crowd forgive him.
David Ogboma (didn’t quite catch his stage name) was another natural. He took swipes at the £3,000 visa bond scheme, terrorism, PDP, ACN, Tontoh Dike and Tuface.
Akpororo’s non-pc jokes about gays were a real hit with a Nigerian audience.
The last comedy act for the night was Eddie Kadi, Congolese born British comedian. Nollywood films and African parents were the two topics at the receiving end of his jokes.
Thankfully, there was no report of any fractured ribs but it was a thoroughly enjoyable night. The only mistake Julius made was asking if the audience liked his outfit. The answer was a unanimous “no, we don’t”! The audience wasn’t feeling his fashion sense.
All the acts were funny even the mediocrity of one or two of the singing/dancing/rapping acts was hilarious. Watch out for the energetic female dancers, gyrating what nature generously endowed them with.
Attendance: let’s just say it depends on whether you’re a half-full or half-empty person. It was the first time ‘crack ya ribs’ will be hosted at the Indigo2, however, so expecting a sell out crowd might be slightly over ambitious.