Tumi Morake in Herstory (2 stars)

This article is from 2013

Tumi Morake in Herstory

Tame and botched gig of weakly observed one-liners and considered jokes

It’s easy to see why Tumi Morake has been billed as the Queen of South African comedy. Her nifty blend of political reflection and racy asides can make this new show a completely watchable and well-spent hour of standup, but certain patches of suspect material and delivery threaten to override the whole gig.

Morake details her life in plain-view, from her South African origins through to arriving in Edinburgh via London. Unfortunately, tall tales of this journey and its cultural adjustments are weakly observed and caught between one-liners and more elaborate, considered jokes. It’s awkward, therefore, to get behind the material and it fills an audience with no confidence or ease when a comic finishes every story with ‘anyway…’

Put it down to nerves or just misfortune, but Morake doesn’t seem completely comfortable with both her set and an audience who may not be roaring with laughter at every punch line. Only interacting with the crowd to discuss the gig itself (never a good idea), this fractures the flow and morphs what could be a refreshing political insight into a tame and botched gig.

Assembly Hall, 623 3030, until 26 Aug, 9pm, £11–£12 (£10–£11).

Tumi Morake in HerStory

  • 2 stars

Whacked Management and Assembly. 2006 saw a momentous change to the South African Comedy landscape. Tumi Morake rose up like a new light source, her fierce and funny gaze illuminating the previously shadowy world of male-dominated comedy. Morake is one of South Africa's most revered comedians, with blazing speed, and an…