Trevor Noah – The Racist revisited
Shepherds Bush Empire,
Friday 24th January 2014
Trevor Noah enjoyed a stunning breakthrough year in Scotland and England in 2012 and a record breaking start to 2013 with a run of shows at Soho Theatre (2012-13) that broke all records there for tickets sold. Last year ended in sensational style with a sold out gig at the famous Eventim Hammersmith Apollo.
Due to being in such popular demand, it is not surprising that Trevor Noah is back in the UK to perform his hit show, ‘Trevor Noah – The Racist’. Last Friday he was performing at Shepherd’s Bush Empire for the second of two sold out shows in a week.
Trevor Noah was on cracking form, delivering a comedy master class of high quality, original, clean comedy that had the audience laughing away for a good 90 minutes. Whilst the show was essentially the same show he toured with in January 2013 (see Soho Theatre and Moonlighting reviews) , there was plenty of new material added that made this night a real treat. Even listening to the old jokes again was fabulous. Three times I’ve seen Trevor Noah perform this show in little over a year and each time I’ve loved it. That says a lot about the quality of the show.
The running theme is the difference between his life in South Africa versus life in England. Furthermore, as he’s lived in America for two years and has clearly travelled and met people from a wide variety of countries and background, he brings a refreshing international perspective to his show, that not only makes you laugh but you feel you’re learning something too and you leave with your mind opened to viewing our British culture and lives with far more of a global perspective.
The jokes regarding the crime, weather, darkness and lack of sun here were spot on. He made the point well and humorously, that when compared to crime levels in South Africa and America, we have relatively little in England.
There was a large contingent of South Africans in the audience judging by the huge cheers for certain jokes and references to South Africa. There was a bit of tension too as a section of his adoring audience began to boo him when he said he tours all over Africa but won’t play Zimbabwe. He explained why. He likes to poke fun of people, for instance Presidents, as is a comedian’s want. However a certain President Robert Mugabe doesn’t take kindly to lampooning and as Trevor would like to retain his life and freedom for a while longer, he gives Zimbabwe a wide berth. Good response and he won over his doubters.
From start to finish this was comedy of the highest order. He has a friendly, almost innocent, wide eyed-ness about him as he dissects the anomalies of everyday life in England and South Africa. The traffic lights and pelican crossings jokes, the weather, the language differences were all great fun.
As I said earlier, I’ve now seen this show three times in 13 months and each time have thoroughly enjoyed it. That takes some doing and highlights the quality of the man.
It is not surprising that Trevor Noah was nominated for the ‘Best International Comedian’ award at the Black Comedy Awards 2013 and was rated as #1 of the ‘Top 10 Black comedians to look out for in 2014‘ in my Blog last week. His tour is pretty much sold out, but if you get the chance to see Trevor Noah, do so. You won’t be disappointed.
The British leg of his tour concludes on 31 January 2014 before continuing in South Africa in February 2014.
© Tiemo Talk of the Town