Interview: Laura Davis

8 April 2016

David Bowie did not describe himself as a pop-star, rather, he was an artist, a performer. Similarly, Laura Davis in no way offers traditional stand-up. Laura herself, tells me, “I don’t look like a stereotypical comedian”. Her comedy doesn’t follow any collective, she is the orange in a bowl of grapes.

Having come off last year’s Comedy Festival with her show Ghost Machine, which won the Golden Gibbo award, celebrating a “local, independent act that bucks trends and pursues the artist’s idea more strongly than it pursues any commercial lure”. Laura appears poised to take over the Australian comedy scene. Ghost Machine was conducted in a basement, with Laura dressed as a ghost. Such is the surrealist and daring nature of her comedy. Her style and ability to explore new frontiers, turning stand up into a truly artistic medium, is invigorating. Laura emphasises her desire to “be with the audience, not above them”. I prompt her on the abstract nature of her comedy, to which she cites her desire to put on an “experience” for the audience, where they can leave her show “feeling absolutely wonderful”. A smile lights up her face.

Her show at this year’s Melbourne International Comedy Festival, Marco. Polo., will continue to follow her trend but no one else’s. The title hints at what she will be undertaking, she is conducting the show blindfolded. A terrifying notion for most of us, Laura appears excited to put on something so unusual for her audience. Marco. Polo. has already been listed as a must see show by the Guardian. If you love the weird, abstract, and artistic, you’ll love Laura Davis.

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