As the country’s top comedians pack their bags, jokes and underpants in preparation for this week’s second annual Savanna Durban Summer Comedy Festival, the organisers have been busy behind the scenes making some additional plans.

On Fire Comedy, in conjunction with festival partners Savanna Premium Cider, Edgars, Comedy Central and East Coast Radio, have concluded negotiations to film the ‘Kill or Die’ show, which will be packaged as a 24-minute special to air on Comedy Central – a first for the Durban comedy industry!

Kill or Die is a showcase of Durban’s newest and youngest local comedy talent to perform to a live audience and will feature Neville Pillay, Musa, Venessa Morton, Shannon Rice, Mfundo, Andrew Hughes, Ntshebe, Rory Petzer, Davin M, Sbu Mnyanda, Tibs – and headlined by Joey Raddien.

Kill or Die is a showcase of Durban’s newest and youngest local comedy talent to perform to a live audience and will feature Neville Pillay, Musa, Venessa Morton, Shannon Rice, Mfundo, Andrew Hughes, Ntshebe, Rory Petzer, Davin M, Sbu Mnyanda, Tibs – and headlined by Joey Raddien.

The show was initially not scheduled for filming, but one of the clear missions of the organisers and partners is to promote and showcase up-and-coming talent. The Comedy Central special is a great piece of news for newbie comics in Durban.

“We have always been passionate about creating platforms for new talent – after all, they’re the future of Durban Comedy! We know that Savanna already does some great work to support local comedians and Edgars is also passionate about about its local focus.  This is an opportunity for all of us to do something specifically for Durban and so we took a decision to fund the filming, while Comedy Central will provide the airtime. This way, money raised by the festival can be invested back into the promise we’ve made to make Durban the comedy capital of the country.” – Jem Atkins (On Fire Comedy co-owner)

‘Kill or Die’ takes place on Thursday 15th December at 20:30 at New York Restaurant & Bar (101 Innes Rd, Morningside). Tickets cost only R70 at Computicket.

“On Fire Comedy will create the 24-minute special from the 90 minutes of live show content. The pressure is on for the newcomers to step up and claim a spot in the TV show. We want to put Durban talent on a pedestal, but that doesn’t mean we create a culture of handouts. What we’re doing is creating an ambitious target, and asking local comics to push themselves so that the ones who get the exposure deserve it. There’s nothing like healthy competition to raise the standard.” – Jess Knauf (On Fire Comedy co-owner)

Getting down to the “Business of Funny”

It’s not all fun and games (well, it mostly is); there’s a business side to being funny too. For the first time, the Savanna Durban Summer Comedy Festival will host Beyond a Joke, a series of panel discussions focused on the “business of funny”.

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This is a first for South Africa, designed to kickstart the development of a roadmap to establish Durban as the “comedy capital of the country.”

. Photo Cred: www.mg.co.za

On Fire Comedy are excited to announce that they have confirmed Loyiso Gola – one of SA’s most successful and globally recognised comedians – to join the ‘Beyond a Joke’ panel. Photo Cred: www.mg.co.za

Mike Saunders, well-known Durban social media guru, author and founder of DigitLab, will also be joining the panel. Gola and Saunders will add their wealth of knowledge and insight, along with other Durban celebrities and experts during the interactive, lively panel discussions taking place on Friday 16th December at 14:30 at the Durban Jewish Centre.

This is an absolute must for anyone involved in the comedy industry and Durban tourism, as well as corporate leaders who recognise the value of comedy in growing and developing their business.

Tickets are R130 at Computicket. 

The #SavannaOnFire comedy gig guide is as follows:

  • Wednesday 14th December: Dirty Rotten
  • Thursday 15th December: Kill or Die
  • Thursday 15th December: Headliners!
  • Friday 16th December: Beyond a Joke!
  • Friday 16th December: Headliners! – Gala Show #2
  • Saturday 17th December: Locals Only!