Pioneering SA comedians return with “Biltong & Potroast 2010” - 35 years on!
Parker’s Comedy & Jive welcomes a piece of South African comedy history in February 2010 as the venue hosts 4 reunion performances of groundbreaking comedy show “Biltong & Potroast”, the international phenomenon first seen on South African television screens in 1976.
Featuring 4 of the original cast members – Mel Miller, Cyril Green, Eddie Eckstein and Dennis MacLean – “”Biltong & Potroast 2010” is set to take audiences on a no-holds-barred trip back to the advent of South African stand-up comedy!
Having accumulated nearly 200 years of comedy experience between them, Miller, Green, Eckstein and MacLean reprise thei roles which made the television show a must-see during the dawn of South African broadcasting.
“Biltong & Potroast” was devised in 1975 to pit South Africa’s finest comedians against comics from Europe in an improvisational contest which saw host Clackie McKay handing out points based on the quality of their jokes on a series of randomly-selected topics.
The show enthralled viewers for its 5-year run, eclipsing the immense popularity of the BBC’s “World At War” on the early SABC and causing everything in the country to grind to a halt each Tuesday evening as South Africa tuned in to see the talented comics jousting.
“Biltong & Potroast was the reason pubs and clubs installed television sets for the first time in the late 70’s – otherwise nobody went out on a Tuesday night!” says Cyril Green, who told the first ever joke on the show.
That jousting wasn’t limited to the on-air battle as they also had to find ways to outwit the fearsome SABC censors while making their content relevant – and, of course, funny! “We brought our own props and wardrobe, wrote our own script and told our own jokes – all the broadcaster had to do was point the cameras at us – and we got paid R35 per episode for the privilege!” says Mel Miller, South Africa’s “Godfather of Comedy” who continues to fill stand-up comedy venues after 46 years in the business.
While the foursome aim to roll back the years for those who loved the television series, they won’t shy away from tackling content relevant to life in South Africa in the 21st century. “I still read the newspaper every day and get angry about some of the things I see – and I can’t wait to get out on stage and skewer politicians with as much relish as we tackled the government in the 70’s”, says Miller.
Performances of “Biltong & Potroast 2010” run from 18-21 February 2010 at Parker’s Comedy & Jive at Montecasino in Fourways. Performances 18-20 February are at 9pm, and at 7pm on 21 February. Tickets are priced at R150 and are available from Computicket and via the Parker’s Comedy & Jive website (www.parkerscomedy.com).
Parker’s Comedy & Jive is situated near the cinemas at Montecasino at Shop 24, next to the Boogaloos Skate Park and across from Sweets from Heaven.
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