After about four months of buzz, the now-annual comedy show, ‘Ay Live’ has arrived in Lagos. Tagged ‘AY Live: The Invasion’, the event, which took place on Sunday, May 1, drew a huge crowd to the expansive Expo Centre of the Eko Hotel and Suites, which was filled almost to capacity. In recent years, the ‘AY Live’ comedy show has threatened to overrun other comedy events in the country in terms of appeal, repertoire and class, and it fully achieved this feat with its 2011 installment.
In the hall
Inside, the sold-out hall was so full that some guests had to stand, though this didn’t seem to stop them from having as much fun as the seated guests, who paid up to N300,000 for tickets at the VVIP tables. The First Lady of Lagos State, Abimbola Fashola, former Super Eagles captain, Austin Okocha, and a host of Nollywood stars and fellow comedians were in attendance at the show.
At about 7pm, ‘AY Live’ began with memorable performances by upcoming comedians, most of whom are past winners of the Ay Open Mic comedy competition. Established comedians, including Akpororo, Gboy, Ushbabee, Pencil, Whalemouth, Emeka Smith, MC Shakara, Elenu, Seyi Law, Helen Paul and Princess, also took the stage at different intervals, delivering top-notch, original jokes.
The show also featured a musical performance by former West African Idol contestant, Jodie, who is currently enjoying a renaissance of sorts with her new single ‘Kuchi Kuchi Baby’. Other musicians who graced the stage included YQ, Kas, Skuki, D’ Prince, Yemi Sax, Kaffy and a host of others. However, it was the appearance of Duncan Mighty that really got the crowd going. The Port Harcourt-based star, who rarely makes an appearance in Lagos, must have been surprised and overjoyed at the amount of love shown to him by the audience. Several guests were familiar with his songs and most jumped up from their seats to dance and sing along with the singer popularly known as “Port Harcourt’s first son.”
A visionary host
AY might not be the most talented or exciting personality in the art of comedy, but he makes up for his shortcomings with boundless class, vision and creativity. Apart from the high quality of the show, which was commended by the audience, his acts were works of genius. Though most of his previous comedy trailers and skits have become sensations on YouTube, the new ones unveiled at this year’s show were real beauties.
His entrance trailer stars AY as a white garment prophet who was kidnapped by Aki and Pawpaw, the diminutive Nollywood comedy actors. The trailer was infused in his performance when he tumbled onstage from a trailer scene and continued his performance from there. He reenacted his usual prophecy session in a lackluster manner, sparing the usual target of the now-popular joke, Sammie Okposo, this time around.
A fashion show featuring Uti Nwachukwu, Kenneth Okolie and others, who modeled pieces from Yomi Casual, took place before 9ice and Tuface came on stage towards the end of the show. 9ice gave an accomplished performance of some of his hit songs. He was joined by 2face on their duet, ‘Street Credibility’, before paving way for Tuface to take the proceedings to the riveting climax.
An afterparty followed at Jay Jay Okocha’s ‘10’ lounge.
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