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Neel Kolhatkar in Truth Be Told - FRINGE WORLD Festival

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by Jake Dennis (subscribe)
Jake Dennis is an internationally published poet, a jazz, swing, and blues crooner, and a freelance journalist. Visit his website: www.poetofjazz.com and follow him on Facebook www.facebook.com/poetofjazz
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Bucket loads of comedy from Aussie comic
Opening on Valentine's Day in the Fringe World Circus Tent, 20 year old Sydney comedian Neel Kolhatkar was enthusiastically welcomed by the young crowd, many of whom I assume were first caught by his comedic talent on YouTube.

In Neel Kolhatkar in Truth Be Told," the self-described "ethnic" comedian covers topics like the lack of positive ethnic role models for non-White Australians growing up, the lunacy of needing mind-altering drugs to enjoy clubbing and house music, and various conquests for sex.

Aussie comedian Neel Kolhatkar
Image from Neel Kolhatkar's Facebook
"At 4"11 and 60 kilos, I've got the figure every woman wants," he jokes.

Yet Kolhatkar's diminutive stature is part of his appeal; he has control of his listeners and proves that confidence has nothing to do with size.

Kolhatkar's imitation of Tony Abbott's mumbling mannerisms, stereotypical Ocker Australian speech patterns, and stereotypical "Wogs" are faultless. Although Kolhatkar pokes fun at these and other examples of racial stereotypes, thereby holding them up to quick interrogation, he occasionally, perhaps unwittingly, simultaneously promotes them. Is it really helpful to use, as is done in The Hangover 2, the Western stereotype of "the Asian dick" for the sake of humour? Absolutely not.

Other than unwittingly joking that he would "make sweet lovin'" to a fan who revealed she's actually fifteen, the only other awkward point in the show was his dig at Indie music after all, many Indie lovers make up the Fringe World audience.

Neel Kolhatkar, YouTube Sensation
Image from Neel Kolhatkar's Facebook


But ultimately, Kolhatkar's drama training and experience in the industry, serve him well. He is able to engage and interact with the audience through improvisational humour using audience info for his comedic riffs. Whether he's making light of those who came to the Valentine's Day show but are stuck in the "friend zone" or treating latecomers to truly awkward walks of shame as they scramble for one of the few remaining seats in the tent, Kolhatkar drew bucketfuls of laughter from the audience. If I were a Fringe World reviewer, I would give this show 4 stars, and nominate it for a Comedy Award but since I am not, I'll just invite you to go see his show.

Comedy gold by Neel Kolhatkar
Image from Neel Kolhatkar's Facebook
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Why? Fringe Comedy Show
When: Tuesday 17 February 2015 to Wednesday 18 February 2015 - 7:45-8:45pm
Phone: 9227 6288
Where: Circus Tent, Perth Cultural Centre
Cost: $22-27.50
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