Melbourne International Comedy Festival 2017: Sam Simmons – A-K

Sam Simmons has his own brand of comedy. On the night I attended his show A-K, Simmons was very impressed that it was his first night with no walkouts — which may give an idea of the branding.

A-K is Sam’s first Melbourne International Comedy Festival show since winning the 2015 Barry Awards and jetting off to share his laughter with the world. Now he has returned to Melbourne.

A-K’s premise is hilariously simple: ‘Forty-year-old man sits on stage and reads the phonebook.’. Luckily, he’s very easily distracted and his sidetracks take the audience on a journey through the inner workings of his mind, from euthanasia fun parks (which is actually a thing) to the horrific inappropriateness of calling an infant’s genitals a ‘pussy’.

Sam kicked off the show with a very impressive rendition of ‘Ave Verum Corpus’ which I was genuinely impressed by — perhaps there’s a musical career also calling? He intertwines the entire show with impressive recorded punchlines with three part harmonies. These are probably the highlight of the show. (I can’t say no to a well-done audio interaction.)

Simmons leapt across the stage at points, interrogating bathroom-goers on why they were leaving and telling off a stage manager for not looking happy enough, and criticising other comedians at the festival. I did appreciate his smackdown of Sam Newman from the Footy Show, however — that’s a universal topic we can all get behind.

With all the much-needed tangents, we never quite made it to ‘K’ in the Sydney phonebook. But who knows, maybe by the end of the festival he’ll get there.

I recommend A-K if you’re a big fan of obscure comedy skits, but this show definitely isn’t for everyone.

Jasmin Ashton is a designer, marketer and freelance writer from Melbourne who has a lot of feelings about everything. Find them at @Jasmanna.

A-K runs until April 23rd at the Forum. Purchase tickets now.
The venue is accessible.

Read The Plus Ones’ guide to MICF 2017, and visit often to see all our reviews.

Disclosure: The Plus Ones were invited guests of Sam Simmons.
Image credit: Melbourne International Comedy Festival.