DeAnne Smith

DeAnne Smith

DeAnne Smith loves Australia – like, really loves Australia.

Smith, by her own admission, feels very attached to our comedy scene, and visiting every year has allowed her to develop her own style.

Back again at Melbourne International Comedy Festival this year with her latest show, Epiphany, the Canadian comedian gushes and swoons with anticipation.

“I truly believe Australian comedy is world class.

It’s been great to have been exposed to it so early on,” says Smith.

As an international artist visiting so frequently, Smith has a unique perspective on what’s on offer in our comedy circuit.

“I feel like Australia gets a UK influence, a US influence, so they understand both types of comedy,

but at the same time it’s so far removed from everything else that it has fully developed its own unique scene, its own unique voice.

“A lot of Australian comics are really doing their own thing, and they might not realise how much the rest of the world see this style stand out.”

Many may assume there’s a barrier among these cultures and scenes in understanding the jokes that people like Smith lay down,

but it’s never been an issue for her.

“I arrived in Australia early in my career with a North American style ± set up, punch, bam, bam, bam

then I got exposed to a more UK storytelling style and what it is to create a new hour long show every year.

Epiphany is a unique concept for Smith ± she’s trying to share little revelations she’s had in the last few years.

“How can I say this,” she begins.

It’s the smallest turn of an idea.

“I decided to embrace what I do and what I do is let things develop over the course of a few months.

Right about now I’m seeing how everything hangs together and what the scenes are.

“What I’m aiming for this year is digging really deep into some of my own struggles with stuff in the hopes that becomes universal to everybody.

My favourite type of comedy is personal stuff that becomes universal.”

When Smith is doing an hour-long show, she builds in a buffer to what she’s scripted.

“That’s the beauty of live performance, is that it’s different every night. My energy is different,

the crowd’s energy is different, and to not be able to respond to that, I find really restrictive.

“I don’t know where or when it’s going to happen, but if I’m flexible and open to the moment,

absolutely we’re going to have material unique to that night and that room.”

“My favourite thing in the world is to be spontaneous with what’s going on with the people in the room.”

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