Headlining the comedy night at Equinox bar on Friday is award-winning Australian comedian Ro Campbell, who last brought his own brand of hilarity to Cambodia in September 2012.
“I love those crazy rickshaws that are like a pony carriage, and the Cambodian barbecue with that weird, slimy fish soup that you dip stuff into really grew on me. Strange but very tasty,” Campbell told the Post, in reference to tuk-tuks and the local delicacy prahok.
“The people history and natural beauty make it one of the most fascinating countries I have ever been and I can’t wait to come back,” he said in an email.
In the past two years, Campbell has toured an extensive list of European countries including the UK, Sweden, Finland, Latvia, Estonia, Holland, Belgium, Germany, France, Switzerland, Romania and Malta, as well as returning to Southeast Asia for dates in Singapore, Jakarta and at the new Crackhouse Comedy Club in Kuala Lumpur.
He has also gone back to his homeland, performing at the Adelaide Fringe Festival and for outback mining communities in some of the most remote parts of the country. “After breaking down in the middle of the desert I will never complain about a delayed flight ever again,” he said about performing in the Outback.
“Probably the weirdest show I did was being flown at 24 hours’ notice to a secret island to entertain a billionaire playboy in his pleasure palace. Very surreal,” he said. “It’s hard to go back to your normal life when you see how the 1 per cent live.”
A long-term resident of Scotland, Campbell was given the distinction of Scottish Comedian of the Year in 2010. A veteran of the annual Edinburgh Fringe festival, he joined forces with Glaswegian stand-up Wee Man two years ago to create the cult hit show Comedy Rap Battle, which pits comics against each other in a war of words, largely amusing insults of a most personal nature.
“I would modestly say it is the only genuinely underground event at the Edinburgh Fringe and it is extremely popular with other comics, which is always a good sign. Comedians are really good at dissing each other in rhyme,” said the 38-year-old.
“The best joke I heard all year is probably not suited to a respectable publication such as yours, and it only appeals to fans of gangsta rap and specifically NWA. My buddy Josh Howie, a very funny guy, did it in his controversial Edinburgh show.
“Eazy E died of AIDS. He should have worn a condom when he f—ed the police.
“I’m still laughing.”
Joining Campbell on stage at Equinox are fellow Australian comedians Jon Bennett and Marty Lappan.
Bennett began his comedy career doing regular stand-up shows at the age of 19. After a brief foray into TV and radio, which included writing and acting in Channel 31 comedy shows such as the award-winning The Ugly Stick, Bennett decided to change to a more storytelling style of comedy. In 2007, he began performing in storytelling nights around Melbourne, including Northcote’s popular Willow Tales, which he now hosts.
In 2009, Bennett realised his talent for placing his groin next to inanimate objects and created the hugely popular internet photographic phenomenon Pretending Things Are a C—. What started as a joke between friends has now spawned a successful book, exhibition and countless critically acclaimed live performances.
Bennett is taking suggestions for things he will pretend are male genitalia around Phnom Penh via his Facebook page. The best one wins a signed photo.
Lappan is a 20-year veteran of the Australian comedy circuit, with acclaimed runs at the Adelaide Fringe and Melbourne International Festivals under his belt. His international work has included performances at world famous venues such as The London Comedy Store and Jongleurs, as well as at the Edinburgh Fringe.
Tickets for Friday’s show cost $4 each with the start time slated for 8:30pm. Details can be found on The Comedy Club Cambodia Facebook page. Campbell and Bennett will also be heading up to Siem Reap to perform at The Warehouse bar on Sunday night. Scotsman Steven Halcrow will MC both nights.