Personal connection in Night of Laughs

FUNNY MAN: He might have switched his Wellington comedy club for a regular job but stand up comedian Vaughan King still enjoys gigs such as Hospice Tairawhiti fundraiser Night of Laughs. The event has a particularly personal connection for King - he gets to spend more time with his father who is in hospice care.
Picture supplied

AFTER two-and-a-half years of owning a comedy club in Wellington, stand- up comedian Vaughan King closed the doors and now enjoys a 50-hour-a- week job rather than up to 90 hours running the club.

“This is the first time in years I’ve had a job,” he says.

“Fifty hours feels like a holiday.”

He still gets to do stand-up gigs like the Hospice Tairawhiti Night of Laughs fundraiser tomorrow night. Along with comedian-magician Jarred Fell, King will be a support performer for headline act Urzila Carlson.

The event has a very personal connection for King.

“My father lives in Gisborne and is getting great support from the hospice service so it’s a pleasure and an honour to be able to do this gig,” says King.

“This show is very special to me. When I told Dad he was over the moon.”

Cancer is no laughing matter, obviously, but laughing matters.

As host of tomorrow night’s fundraiser King’s role is to help the audience settle in for a laugh and feel like they are part of the show because it is for such a good cause, he says.

A lot of comedy is to be had in real life, he says. The joke he tells about how to deal with door-to-door evangelists is based on actual encounters that involved a plastic beaker.

Holding the cup next to his ear he would crush it with a horrible crackle, wrench his head around and growl an invitation for the visitor to leave. He’s done that a few times, he says. Sometimes they run away but performed on stage it has the audience in stitches.

What happens on stage when a performer turns on the comedy is an unknown quantity to King.

“Maybe it’s like when sportsmen get in the zone. When you get that first laugh you’re away. You get instant gratification because people are laughing.”

King got involved with stand-up comedy more than 17 years ago when he wanted to add another stage skill to his range of stage experience.

“I was in the habit of ticking things off on my CV,” he says. “I started as a mime artist. I was successful unfortunately but it was a lot of fun.”

When the game-based, improvisatory platform, theatresports arrived in New Zealand, he got involved with that as well. At a party he declared he was going to Auckland to try his luck as a comedian so he could add that to his CV.

“I just didn’t think I’d get so into it.”

AFTER two-and-a-half years of owning a comedy club in Wellington, stand- up comedian Vaughan King closed the doors and now enjoys a 50-hour-a- week job rather than up to 90 hours running the club.

“This is the first time in years I’ve had a job,” he says.

“Fifty hours feels like a holiday.”

He still gets to do stand-up gigs like the Hospice Tairawhiti Night of Laughs fundraiser tomorrow night. Along with comedian-magician Jarred Fell, King will be a support performer for headline act Urzila Carlson.

The event has a very personal connection for King.

“My father lives in Gisborne and is getting great support from the hospice service so it’s a pleasure and an honour to be able to do this gig,” says King.

“This show is very special to me. When I told Dad he was over the moon.”

Cancer is no laughing matter, obviously, but laughing matters.

As host of tomorrow night’s fundraiser King’s role is to help the audience settle in for a laugh and feel like they are part of the show because it is for such a good cause, he says.

A lot of comedy is to be had in real life, he says. The joke he tells about how to deal with door-to-door evangelists is based on actual encounters that involved a plastic beaker.

Holding the cup next to his ear he would crush it with a horrible crackle, wrench his head around and growl an invitation for the visitor to leave. He’s done that a few times, he says. Sometimes they run away but performed on stage it has the audience in stitches.

What happens on stage when a performer turns on the comedy is an unknown quantity to King.

“Maybe it’s like when sportsmen get in the zone. When you get that first laugh you’re away. You get instant gratification because people are laughing.”

King got involved with stand-up comedy more than 17 years ago when he wanted to add another stage skill to his range of stage experience.

“I was in the habit of ticking things off on my CV,” he says. “I started as a mime artist. I was successful unfortunately but it was a lot of fun.”

When the game-based, improvisatory platform, theatresports arrived in New Zealand, he got involved with that as well. At a party he declared he was going to Auckland to try his luck as a comedian so he could add that to his CV.

“I just didn’t think I’d get so into it.”

Night of Laughs with Urzila Carlson and support acts Vaughan King and comedian-magician Jarred Fell, tomorrow, 8pm, War Memorial Theatre.Tickets available from Stephen Jones Photography or TicketDirect.

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