The funny guys are coming

21:43, Mar 12 2014
Dai Henwood
TAKING THE STAGE: Comedian Dai Henwood will appear with Ben Hurley and Vaughan King at the Fresh-Up Real NZ Comedy Tour at the Theatre Royal.

Kiwi comedians Dai Henwood, Ben Hurley and Vaughan King are on top of their game - and on their way to Nelson.

Unlike some acts which have cancelled Nelson visits with the closure of the Trafalgar Centre, the guys are looking forward to bringing heartland New Zealand plenty of laughs in the Fresh-Up Real NZ Comedy Tour, and appear in the Theatre Royal on Friday next week.

Dai Henwood took time out to chat with the Leader about life on the road and the state of comedy in New Zealand.

You're promising a Wild Ride when you hit town. Are our partners and children safe?

Well I know that my partner and child are safe because I am out of town. I can't give a full assurance on the safety of your partners however but I can tell you your kids will be fine (only if you hire a good babysitter though. They shouldn't be at the show, it is R18).

You got to know the region during the filming of Kiwi Flyer. What's your three favourite things about Nelson - and the worst?


There are only three things in Nelson aren't there? The Boat Shed, The Free House and The Sprig & Fern. All of those places treated me well. In terms of the worst I would have to say the airport, because that meant I had to leave the beautiful city of Nelson. (I wish there was a cheese emoticon I could insert here).

Whatever motivated you to be a comedian, rather than a banker, accountant, or used shoes salesman?

I have always wanted to be a comedian. I can remember making someone laugh when I was 5 and I caught the bug. I would be a bad banker as I would just want to keep all the money and if I was a used shoe salesman I would just try and sell everyone jandals. Jandals are awesome.

Do you get fed up with being asked ridiculous questions, which are no doubt seen as offering cues for comedic responses?

Sort of, although it is better than training for the ironman only to find out you are not allowed to compete in jandals.

Well, seriously then, what is the state of New Zealand performance comedy and would you recommend it as a worthwhile, honourable profession for your son?

Comedy in New Zealand is in the strongest state it has ever been in with people of all shapes sizes and races covering every niche there is to cover. I think it would be an honourable profession for my son but then I think any profession he has a passion for is honourable. I believe in encouraging children to follow their passion (but then become realistic if it doesn't earn any money).

What can Nelsonians expect from the gig next week?

Lots of belly laughs, words they have never seen before and topics they have never even thought of. A great night out with three of New Zealand's top comedians.

Why the heartland emphasis? We all know size is important -- are smaller town audiences easier or harder to "work" than the likes of Auckland and Wellington?

A lot of tours just do the main centres. I think it is important to take comedy everywhere in New Zealand. I started my career touring the country top to bottom and some of the best characters are in towns and cities that get left off the touring map. We are passionate Kiwis at heart so it is only appropriate to go to the heartland of New Zealand.

What's the three best and three worst things about life on the road?

Best: Spending all day laughing with my mates. Going to Nelson. Making people laugh each night

Worst: Being away from the family. Missing my wife. Missing my son.

What's next for you after the current eight-centre tour?

We are filming 7 Days for the rest of the year, I have a few secret projects up my sleeve plus taking my family on holiday whenever I can (preferably somewhere sunny).

Who of anyone in New Zealand would you like to invite to lunch next week and what would you serve?

Brendon McCullum, I would serve fish and chips and we would sit on the lawn and talk about cricket.