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Saturday 08 April 2017

Ak Pride: Wild and silly bear comedy night

Posted in: Performance
By Cody Ward - 14th February 2017

The bear comedy show, a staple part of the LYC Bear New Zealand Week and Auckland Pride, returns to The Classic in Queen Street for the third year in a row with an impressive line-up of comedy talent.

With a line-up including the likes of Eli Matthewson and Neil Thornton, who organises the show as well as performing in it, it's promised to be a “fun and silly night” with “wild and raucous line-up”

Thornton, pictured, says the line-up is “very very fun and award winning”, and that the night itself is “comedy for everyone, there are jokes that everyone will get" as the lgbti and lgbti- friendly performers “celebrate, and come together for a great laugh."

Three quarters of the tickets, for this Thursday night, are already sold, with remaining tickets still available for pre-sales or at the door. Based on past years' experience it's expected to be a sell-out.

Thornton is originally from New York city but is now living in Wellington.

In the USA, he performed in New York city, Washington D.C., and the gay-heavy holiday resorts of Provincetown, Fire Island, and the Poconos. He was the producer of New York's first all-bear comedy revue, Funny. Furry. Fierce. and performed in MAULED: The Bears of Comedy at Provincetown Bear Week.

He's become a staple of the Wellington and Auckland comedy clubs and performs throughout the country, opening for performers such as Urzila Carlson, Mike King, Paul Ego, Jeremy Corbett, Brendan Lovegrove and Jeremy Elwood. He recently appeared in the TV3 comedy special After Hours.

Thornton says others in the line-up will, with the potential for “a few surprises”, be:

Eli Matthewson who has toured all around the country and further afield. He's performed in the Edinburgh Fringe, the World Buskers Festival, the Melbourne International Comedy Festival and, as part of FanFiction Comedy, performed in Glasgow for the New Zealand Team at the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

He's part of the core writing team for TV shows Funny Girls and Jono and Ben, and has also appeared on TV3's 7 Days and AoteroHa.

The Fan Brigade express their comedy through song "with zero filter." They've been seen on AotearoHa: Next Big Things and singing the news on 7 Days' Slice of Seven.

They were awarded Best Newcomer at the 2014 NZ Comedy Guild Awards as well as awarded Best Newcomer at the 2016 NZ International Comedy Festival for their show Ask the Fan Brigade.

David Correos, a fast-rising performer on the NZ comedy scene, is a Filipino comic who won the 2016 Billy T James award. He grew up in Christchurch and moved to Auckland in 2014. He was given the Comic Originality award at the 2015 Comedy Guild Awards.

James Mustapic's comedy has been described as 'cutting edge' as he shares stories of people who have done him wrong over the years. He was a Raw Comedy Quest Finalist in 2016.

Cody Ward - 14th February 2017

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