Review by Carly Fisher
An expert storyteller and all round funny person, Lizzy Hoo excels in her latest show Lizzy Hoo - Woo Hoo! Approaching 40 and here to share all that she has learned in the build up to this milestone birthday, Hoo’s Sydney Comedy Festival show is a fabulous night out.
I’ll admit, Hoo is not necessarily the laugh a minute comedian, but for my personal comedy tastes, this sits perfectly. Instead, Hoo navigates the delicate art of storytelling in comedy seemingly with ease, never losing her audience despite the moments that lack laughter, instead, deeply engaging them as she shared the next moments of her story.
For me, what makes her storytelling so strong is the lived experience that she shares. Hoo shares stories of her past careers, adventures and major life moments that all make her show so much more compelling than many comedians whose sole life experience has been on the comedy stages. There’s nothing wrong with that! Don’t get me wrong. But Hoo’s life has been filled with some unique rides and we as the audience are all the richer for getting a one hour laugh filled summary of them.
In particular, her stories of her year spent in Mongolia really captivated me. Yep, Mongolia. In an effort to ‘step outside her comfort zone’ and ‘find herself’ she volunteered in Mongolia for a year…and by her own admission, yes, maybe that was a little further outside of the comfort zone than that phrase necessitates. A good chunk of the show is dedicated to stories from this adventure but honestly, I would have happily signed up for another hour just of Mongolia stories - from the questionable Shaman, to the bulking up for winter, to, my personal favourite, a night of singing at a work dinner…I was completely invested in Hoo’s ‘My Mongolian Life’ details. I am sure that most in the audience have never been to Mongolia, let alone had the experience of living or working there for a year, but Hoo’s genius is how relatable she made these stories! Honestly, you felt like someone could reply ‘yes, when I lived there, this happened…’ at any moment!
You know a comedian has the audience when they propose a singalong and genuinely get a room full of reply…let me be clear, this does not happen for everyone! I have been witness to some very awkward ‘sing-a-long’ calls. But for Hoo, her audience will do most anything she asks! I won’t tell you which song Hoo believes to be a perfect representation of Australian culture, I’ll just tell you that you should brush up on your Aussie hits and get ready to support this great comedian with all your vocal prowess on her request.
There is a lot more than just Mongolian escapades covered in this hour. Hoo covers a huge range of content from aging and milestone birthdays, to recognising racism in the workplace, to embarrassing photos that never leave your friend’s mum’s mantlepiece and more. The show is filled with good laughs, great anecdotes, important life advice and some very cute floral decor for the stage.
But mostly, it is filled with a wonderful personality guiding you through. Lizzy Hoo is a performer that you want to see next time she is performing near you.
And in the meantime, please remember to wear sunscreen.