Fady Kassab: Borderline
Australian National Raw Comedy Winner 2019, Fady Kassab, a child of war of 17
years in Lebanon, flashes back to wild, turbulent times in the Middle
East, a region that keeps on giving... great material.
Fady, a former SBS Radio Arabic program host, tells horrifyingly funny tales about war, migration, family, kids, racism, health and ageing.
Lebanese-born, Sydney-based comedian Fady Kassab greets his audience as
though they were guests. ‘They told me to wait in the back, but I want to meet
everyone,’ he says with a grin. This sets the tone for the rest of his performance
of Fady Kassab: Borderline: the intimate crowd feels more like a lunch
with family, with your hilarious uncle holding court, than a stand-up comedy
In Fady Kassab: Borderline, the 2019 winner of Triple J’s RAW
Comedy discusses everything from his childhood experiences growing up in
war-torn Beirut to living in Australia post-9/11, all the while exploring relationships,
parenting, and life as he knows it. If you have ever wondered how Middle Eastern
migrants navigate the complexities and subtleties of Australian life, Fady
Kassab: Borderline provides you with a charming education. Kassab creatively
weaves humour into tales of hardship (which takes some doing, giving the circumstances)
and delights the audience with his hilarious insights.
Often irreverent, occasionally shocking—and deliberately so—but always
entertaining, Kassab delivers an hour-long set, gifting the audience with belly
laughs intermingled with social commentary and food for thought. It is not hard
to see why Kassab was selected to feature in the Best of Edinburgh Showcase
Show, where he made the grand finals of the Gilded Balloon’s So You Think
You’re Funny? comedy competition.
It is hard to make civil war funny (this reviewer should know; I grew up in
one) but in Fady Kassab: Borderline, Fady narrates with heart, humour
and a certain irreverence that delights, shocks and leaves the audience wanting
more. And never again will you take the simple pleasure of cheese toastie for
Rating: 4.5 stars
Fady Kassab: Borderline is running until Saturday, 27 February in the Drama Llama at Rhino Room, 131 Pirie Street. Buy your tickets here.
By Leila Hallak-Low