SA comedians honoured

BIG WINNER: Comedian Skhumba Hlophe won comic of the year. PICTURE: TWITTER

Local comedians came out to party at the seventh annual Savanna Comics Choice Awards at the Lyric Theatre on Saturday.

Among them was Tumi Morake and husband Mpho Osei-Tutu, Celeste Ntuli, John Vlismas and many others.

Tembisa-born comedian Skhumba Hlophe was once again the night’s biggest winner in two categories, the best flying solo, for his hugely successful one-man show #1STOFALL as well as the coveted Savanna comic of the year award.

The comedian thanked his fans, family and fellow comedians for contributing to his success.

The awards also saw internationally acclaimed Cape Town-born comic, Loyiso Gola, who recently performed to sold out audiences at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and a successful tour of Australia, taking the coveted Breakthrough Award, which honours a comedian’s achievement that elevates South Africans across borders.

Speaking to The New Age, emerging comedian Thabiso Mhlongo who won the hotly-contested Savanna newcomer of the year category said: “It is a great feeling to be honoured by peers and colleagues.

“It is like a pat on the back so I am greatly honoured to have won the newcomer award as it means a lot for me to be rated by the industry itself,” Mhlongo said.

Beating established comedians such as Skhumba Hlophe and Mashabela Galane to emerge victorious is vernacular comedian Salesman (Collen Chepi), who received the non-English comic award for his hilarious vernacular routines.

Mojak Lehoko received the Comic’s Pen Award for his outstanding writing on several local television productions, while Ebenhaezer Dibakwane took the honours for best intermediate comedian award.

Once again and for three years in a row, the Nando’s best friend of comedy was awarded to Goliath & Goliath Comedy Club for its continued support for local comedy.

The audience choice award, which is the only publicly-voted category went to Elton Mduduzi Ntuli, marking his second achievement in this category.

The inaugural Savanna Pan-African Comic of the Year Award went to Nigerian-born comedian Basketmouth (Bright Okpocha), while veteran Cyril Green, who passed away last month, was honoured with a lifetime achievement award for his immense contribution to the comedy industry, dating back over 40 years.