Deadly comedy gig

THE boys from WhiteBLACKatcha, including our own stand-up comic Andrew Saunders, are gearing up to take the Melbourne International Comedy Festival by storm this weekend.

The Aboriginal comedy showcase Deadly Funny, which plays at the Melbourne Lower Town Hall from 3pm on Sunday has invited Uncle Reggie (Grant Saunders) to open up this year's show at the Melbourne Comedy Festival with his unique welcome to country routine.

Andrew is also set to flatten the audience with his insightful and unique observational humour, featuring his super camp cousin Ray Ray Boy.

WhiteBLACKatcha features the talents of cousins Andrew Saunders, Jaycent Davis and Grant Saunders.

Already they have a strong following online after the release of their pilot series (www.youtube.com/ playlist?list=PL73BC10A97BE2C0F1), as well as the music video parody of One Direction's hit song What Makes You Beautiful (http://youtu.be/Dbkvoj6SC0w).

The premise of the Aboriginal sketch comedy is to lampoon anyone in the path of Aboriginal people, ie the police, Master Chef, hip-hop culture, The Voice, X Factor, even the Queen herself and the entire royal family.

Australian free-to-air television has not yet picked up the series, but Grant, Andrew and Jaycent won't let that deter them.

With the need for further funding to make the next web series, they are going cap-in-hand again to their audience, like online street performers, via crowd funding site http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/whiteblackatcha-web-series-2

Here you can donate as little as $5 and get an original digital release of their next music parody release or as much as $10,000 where you get the works including an exclusive five day workshop in comedy and TV production with the WBA Team with your school or community producing a television comedy sketch for thousands to see worldwide via the team's Facebook and You Tube sites.

"The pledger will feel an overwhelming sense of deadliness creep into their being," laughs writer/producer Grant.

"WhiteBLACKatcha aims to endear mainstream audiences to Aboriginal people by demonstrating that we as a nation are capable, in this post PC era, of laughing at ourselves, while taking the piss out of contemporary Australian society."

Their brand of humour is fresh, original and highly controversial.

The popular reality cook off show Master Chef is given an Aboriginal makeover called Deadly Chef with the star of the show, Frankie Jackson (who looks like the love child of Sir Les Patterson and David Gulpilil) and whose winning dish is 'Devon Three Ways'.

Ray Ray Boy is a super-camp Aboriginal fitness instructor who uses Aboriginal lifestyle moves to teach what he calls 'Koori Zumba' or 'Koomba'.

In Ray Ray Boy's class you can learn moves like 'Runnin from the Gungies' (cops) or the 'Wounded Roo' (kangaroo).

A stroppy old Aboriginal elder, Uncle Reggie, gives quite a bit more than a piece of his mind at what is supposed to be a peaceful welcome-to-country ceremony.

A very wise traditional bushman is dressed in a Versace suit and all of a sudden he becomes Urban Tracker, a funky black super hero who has everyone fooled that he knows everything simply because he is Aboriginal.

The team, through a little seed funding from Screen NSW and Metro Screen, was able to produce a short TV comedy pilot where all these characters come to life on the internet via the team's Facebook page and You Tube.

So far the response has been phenomenal on a local level, where the unemployment rate for Aboriginal people is around 57 per cent.

This show not only has the potential of putting a small country town on the map and launching the careers of three very talented Aboriginal comedic writers - but the Aboriginal community in general are set to gain indirectly through the positive way in which Aboriginal people are depicted in the show.

Via this show Aboriginal people are no longer viewed as the victims or perpetrators of violence and crime, nor are they the noble savage or just the amazing dot painter.

In WhiteBLACKatcha, or WBA, Aboriginal people are empowered by having the right to voice their perspective on society through comedy and unashamedly pump up these stereotypes to make a point.

"The point is that Aboriginal people can laugh at themselves as much as anyone else," explains Grant.

"This show is about humanising a people who are still on the fringes of Australian society and probably the most misunderstood people on earth."

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