I’ve been huge fan of good stand up comedy for years and have educated myself with the best, starting from the late Bill Hicks, Richard Pryor, Eddie Murphy, comedy group Monty Python and more modern ones like Eddie Izzard and Doug Stanhope – though Stanhope is a little bit too much lowbrow humor for my taste. In any case, for my birthday my girlfriend arranged a small treat – and we went to Linnanmäki Peacock-theater to watch a new show targeted for groups of people have pre christmas parties at work. Stand up and rock combined live music performed by well known lead singers singing ever green classics from 1980’s and few routines from stand up comedians.
To my amazement the concept worked pretty well, though for the first half of the show tha band played like civil servants working from nine to five – flawlessly but without any passion. Vocalists Jonna Kosonen and Kim Lönnholm performed like seasoned professionals they are. As it is hard to get a read and feedback from seated audience it was great to see how in any case they managed to fill the room so well with emotions that only power ballads from 1980’s can bring. Among others we heard Marillion’s Kayleigh and Heart’s Alone with really good performances which left me hoping for other 1980 classics like Journey’s ”Don’t stop believing”. A Bon Jovi potpourri combined a few hit songs – including Living on a Prayer and Runaway. Queen’s ”Who wants to live forever” was ambitious song to try to perform as it will always be compared to the magical aura created by Freddie Mercury but as goosebumps on my skin indicated – performance was at least adequate. And Dingo’s Levoton tuhkimo at the end made me remember again why Dingo was such a hit in it’s time. Lyrics for Levoton tuhkimo are beautiful and still relevant to someone in every little bar and village in Finland as it is about quest for love and meaningfulness to life by having someone to hold and share your life with.
For standup performers were Mika Eirtovaara and André Wickström, who both performed on – I believe – their normal level. Mika was energetic like someone who is really desperate to please an audience and warm up little bit drunken mostly 40 something audience. His low brow humor worked and occasionally he was also really funny though no comparison to André, whose professionalism on stage was amazing. He seemed to be like at home on stage and sometimes his minimalist and sarcastic jokes were lost on rest of the audience but had me and my girlfriend cracking up. On the other hand on one crowd pleasing routine – which was really simple low brow mime bit – he extended the joke a little bit too long, though having a roaring laughter from most of the crowd.
So overall the Stand up and rock was a worthwhile way to spend few hours together, watching and listening something that we would not normally do here. But perhaps next time we will go to see just standup performances in Pasila’s standup club or once again to Tavastia to watch a great band perform with 130% of energy.