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By Ciara Shaye Seaman

Dorp Bar’s weekly Comedy Nights were recently brought back with a line-up to honour Women’s Month. On Monday 1 August, a show of comediennes kept the audience entertained with an hour of laughter and self-deprecating advice. 

Women’s Month is dedicated to honouring women who stood up for themselves and those who continue to do so. If there is one attribute all women in comedy seem to have, it is a backbone, which was displayed by the headlining act, Tracy Klaas, and her confident disapproval of whispering audience members or journalists attempting to make notes on their phones.

Mienke Burger, a first-year B in Social Work student and audience member, said, “I feel like they’re [the comediennes] so risky, they don’t hold back — they just go.” 

The riskiness came through in the bluntness with which they — especially the host, Nicola Date — spoke about topics like dating, age, and the economic viability of marriage.

The opening acts, Lerato Sokhulu (rebranded: Rapunzulu), Melissa Ohlsson, Tumi Mkha, and Nazreen Bester, were more than willing to delve into their personal experiences to expose the common struggles of the modern-day woman. 

Between stories of gender role reversal from Bester and the benefits of marriage from Mkha, the evening was an exposé encouraging women to take whatever path they desire and to fight against the preconceived notions placed upon them. 

“Women comedians are ordinary comedians . . . . [I]t kinda sucks that we need our own night; I wish we didn’t, but it’s the only way some of our female comedians get booked,” Tumi Mkha admitted. 

“It is, however, always great to connect with the ladies in the industry and support each other.”

Dorp partners with South African Comedy Shares to bring Comedy Nights as a means for them to connect to the students in Stellenbosch, bringing them love and laughter after the gruelling time of COVID-19. 

The organiser of the event, a representative of SA Comedy Shares, explained their motive for starting with Women’s Night was that “women are the mother nature; that’s where happiness is, and that’s where you connect people.” 

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