Rose Matafeo makes funerals funny

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Review: Rose Matafeo’s Finally Dead – 25/4/2014 at The Basement Theatre
Written and performed by Rose Matafeo
Directed by Madeleine Sami

It’s always a risk taking your parents to a comedy show – you never know if you’ll accidentally break your illusion of innocence through fits of laughter about a crude topic where they give you that piercing look of “you’re not supposed to find this funny!” Or worst yet, they laugh at something you did not want to know they even thought about.

There’s no better distraction from your own personal awkwardness than ROSE MATAFEO having a nervous, yet joyous, breakdown about her very limited existence on this Earth.

Not even a sprained ankle can halt Matafeo’s energy during the opening night of Finally Dead as one of the first shows of the 2015 NZ International Comedy Festival.

Matafeo definitely puts the fun back in funeral as she brings out the light-heartedness from a topic as grim as death. The stage is set as you walked into organ music, and then she took us through her plans and her worries of her own departure through typically Kiwi and pop culture references.

Yes it sure is politically incorrect to laugh at such topics, but her confident and self-deprecating performance convinced the audience that if you can’t laugh at your own insecurities – you’d probably need some drugs or something to lighten up. But if she’s legitimately having a breakdown on stage, Finally Dead is one of the most humorous representations of a public nervous collapse next to 2007 Britney Spears.

One of the show’s highlights was definitely her trusty jack-of-all-trades sidekick, Paul. He is to Rose as Guy Williams is to Jono and Ben, but it was better executed. Paul was the ridiculously perfect accompaniment to Rose Matafeo’s entertainingly erratic mind.

The level of self-awareness and not-so-subtle digs at contemporary issues makes Finally Dead one of the most refreshing comedy shows I’ve seen in a long time. Rose Matafeo surely is one of the best comedians NZ has to offer right now.

A breakdown in front a live audience has never been funnier.

P.S. Keep an eye out on the weather on the night, if it’s going to rain, dress accordingly. Don’t ask question just do it.

See Rose Matafeo’s ‘Finally Dead’ at The Basement Theatre in Auckland as a part of the NZ International Comedy Festival from 28th April to 2nd May – more information can be found HERE.

By Tony Sriamporn-Roberts

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