London-based comedian Stephen K Amos is almost an adopted son of Adelaide, having been a star at Fringe for more than a decade. While some touring international comedians need to tailor their material to the town they're playing, Amos knows the little city so well he has a swag of jokes uniquely for SA.
He intersperses his gags about the Prince Harry with cracks about Cooper's Pale Ale and the one, measly tram from the city to the sea. It has also reached the point he can now replicate the accent with disturbing accuracy; an outsider’s informed insight into Adelaidean culture is sometimes confronting but always hilarious.
For his latest show, Amos contrasts global conflict, such as in Syria, with the conflict he experienced growing up in London within an enormous family of Nigerian descent. Given his upbringing, racism is inevitably a major theme of his show. He is a laughter master because he is often able to bring humour to even the most controversial themes.
When he made a joke about the Stolen Generation, however, he uncovered the lingering reticence of Australians to acknowledge that shameful period in our history. As a veteran comedian, though, he constantly has his finger upon the audience’s pulse, knowing when to back off and when to dig deeper.
As an unwise heckler discovered in the opening minutes of the show, the stage belongs to Amos, and so do the laughs. He has mastered his craft to such an extent that there is no need for scripting and there is nothing to fear from improvisation. Amos knows this town well, and they welcome his annual return with open arms.
Stephen K Amos Tour DatesUntil Sun 13 March – The Arts Theatre (Adelaide)
Fri 18 & Sat 19 March – Canberra Theatre Centre Playhouse (Canberra Comedy)
Thurs 24 March to Sun 10 April – Athenaeum Theatre (Melbourne)
Sun 3 & Sun 10 April – Melbourne Town Hall Supper Room
Thurs 14 April – Burnie arts & Function Centre (Burnie)
Fri 15 April – Devonport Entertainment & Convention Centre (Devonport)
Sat 16 April – Country Club Tasmania (Launceston)
Sun 17 April – Wrest Point Entertainment Centre (Hobart)
Thurs 28 April to Sun 1 May – His Majesty’s Theatre (Perth)
Fri 6 May – Enmore Theatre (Sydney)
Sat 7 May – The Concourse (Chatswood)