Laugh till it hurts at Hilton Arts Festival 2019

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This year’s Hilton Arts Festival in KZN aims to make you laugh with whole venues jam-packed with comedy.

Darren Maule
Darren Maule

For the first time at the 27-year-old event, Darren Maule will tread the boards as the host of On Fire’s hilarious improve show, Scared Scriptless. Think of TV’s Who’s Line Is It Anyway and make it FAR, FAR, FAR more dangerous. TV always has the chance of a second, third or fourth take. On stage it has to be right first time and every time. It is the audience’s job to try their best to make the actors corpse (that’s theatre speak for laugh on stage). It’s a tall order for the audience as the stellar cast of Jem Atkins, Nik Rabinowitz and Rob van Vuuren, vaguely kept in check by Darren Maule, are experts in making sure they come out on top.

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Rob van Vuuren in Again!
Rob van Vuuren in Again!

Rob and Nik, both all the way from Cape Town, will take this opportunity to make you weep with laughter in their own stand up shows Again! (Rob) and Dry White and Fortyfied (Nik). Again celebrates Rob’s 25 years in showbiz. Nik is the master of the written word as well as stand-up comedy. He says: “Having recovered from my early-onset midlife crisis just in time for Cape Town to almost become the world’s first city to run out of water, and as I was now a retired Jewish Olympics leg-spinner, I decided to explore the water crisis, mostly because everyone thought the drought was going to last forever, which, in case you missed it, it didn’t … #SpoilerAlert. After mother nature rained on my parade, I was forced to discuss other stuff too, like love, marriage, infidelity, transphobia, and staying at work post forty, which is like staying awake post forty, but more challenging.” Minister Patricia de Lille simply said, “Ek het myself nat gelag”.

Which to choose? See them all!

Join Master of Mirth, Aaron McIlroy and Mistress of Merriment, Lisa Bobbert, in their brand new, smash-hit, high-class, all-round ‘sock-it-to-them’ comedy presentation, ‘BLOOPERS’! This will be a one off on Sunday morning – be sure to catch it. The festival is hoping that this performance will be packed to the rafters in order to assist Aaron and Lisa overcome their recent tragedy. Their house burnt down while they were at the National Arts Festival. Help us help them!

Ben Voss as Benny Bushwhacker
Ben Voss as Benny Bushwhacker

Catch the world’s funniest conservationist, BENNY BUSHWHACKER! He too has a lot to say ….

“Greetings, people. I am Benny Bushwhacker (aka Ben Voss) – conservationist, environmental campaigner, and the only man to have walked the length of Africa barefoot. I’m touring the country to reveal what it takes to survive the African bush… and for the African bush to survive. Whether it’s my opinion on changing the Springbok emblem, how to spot a bull shitter in Kruger, or the relative chances of my estranged wife, Brenda, replacing the buffalo in the Big 5, I hope to keep you laughing with my ‘wild’ sense of humour and classic bush logic. My stories are brought from bush to page by unofficial biographer, John van de Ruit of SPUD fame, and from page to stage by South Africa’s lioness of theatre, Janice Honeyman. Don’t miss my hilarious look at life on the wild side.”

For details of all of the above, please refer to the website for details after 11 August.

The Hilton Arts Festival, now in its 27th year takes place from 13 to 15 September.

The full programme will appear in KZN copies of The Sunday Times on Sunday 11 August. Booking opens on 12 August, and the programme will be live on the festival website from the morning of 12 August. For more info visit www.hiltonfestival.co.za or contact the Festival Office on admin@hiltonfestival.co.za or 033 383 0127.

The Hilton Arts Festival is presented by Hilton College and tiso blackstar group, in association with Grindrod Bank; Black Coffee; Extreme Events; DWR; Bidvest Car Rental; Stella Artois; FNB, BASA; the KZN Department of Arts and Culture; Tsogo Sun; Redlands Hotel; FNB; the Caxton Group; Maritzburg Sun; Loud Crowd Media, The SA Artist and Sappi.

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