Comedy: Puppet Guy

19 November 2018

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18 – 26 January @ Circus Theatre @ Fringe Central ·
Presented by Fringeworld ·

Africa’s top ventriloquist (he’s the only one, but we all need angles), and double International Emmy-nominated comedian, Conrad Koch, brings his critically acclaimed show Puppet Guy to the Fringe World Festival.

His main puppet character, Chester Missing, is a celebrity in South Africa in his own right. Chester made world news as the first puppet in history to win a court case, no really. Conrad has appeared on the likes of Comedy Central, Comedy Network and at Just For Laughs Montreal.

Armed with an MA in social anthropology Conrad is well known, or to be precise, Chester Missing, is well known in South and Southern Africa for political satire and interviewing politicians on TV. He even has his own TV show, Almost News with Chester Missing. As far as we know he’s also the first puppet in history to have his own weekly news show. Chester Missing was also the first winner of the Ahmed Kathrada Anti-Racism Award, has even written an award-winning book, and has over 370 000 twitter followers. This puppet is not a dummy.

Their live show, Puppet Guy, is a party from start to finish. There’s a slice of political satire, and an even bigger slice of sheer puppet lunacy. It’s an hour of outrageous characters and off-the-wall comedy ventriloquism, with an African flavor. Touching on African and international politics, dissecting social issues, and the silliness of a grown man talking himself, it all comes together in an hour of hilarity for anyone 13 and up.

Conrad just wants to entertain you. Chester wants to talk about the real issues.Besides, being forced to live in a suitcase is always awkward. In Puppet Guy, two feather dusters and a slipper become Hilton, the dancing feminist ostrich; we meet Africa’s most dangerous animal, a mosquito, called Mosquito; and top it all, like every party, with a DJ: an innovative puppet made out of a hoodie and sunglasses, who actually DJs, DJ Hoodie.

The show is also highly interactive. Using a mobile phone, Snapchat and a Projector Puppet Guy turns people in the crowd into digital puppets, hilariously teaching everyone how ventriloquism works, and, using ventriloquism masks, finds a member of the audience who actually thinks they’re a lion, voices and hunting skills included.

The show has toured South Africa and Canada to critical acclaim, standing ovations and sold out houses, with FIVE STAR reviews from both the Winnipeg Free Press and the CBC.

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Author —
Maureen Levy

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