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Chris Brain: Comedy Festival Review

Chris Brain - A Better Place:

It certainly takes a brave man to laugh in the face of depression - but some say that if you don't laugh then you'll cry.

Chris Brain appears to have taken this approach into his work and his life in general.

The early exchanges shared by Chris and the crowd were unusually friendly; possibly due to the fact that the last thing he would want to do would be to pick out someone else with a mental illness for ridicule.

Either that or he's too grateful towards those of us brave enough to venture out on a wet Monday, a rather appropriate setting for the content to be fair.

Some say the secret to a successful stand up comic is to connect with your audience and to let them into your world,

Chris is certainly not shy to open up and he does a remarkably good job of connecting with his audience despite the tough nature of his material.

There's quite a few interesting points of insight shared during the tale of Mr Brain's journey to a better place, such as how being genuinely depressed in a group of gothic kids will instantly elevate you to king of the Goths amongst a group of otherwise middle class posers.

My favourite quip would have to be the obvious statement that someone in an already bad mood, does not need to be told that they suffer from Major Depressive Disorder, Chris did wonder why it couldn't be called a 'mood crunch'

It was also around this point in the show that he suggested that if you are unsure of your mental health that you could take the Facebook quiz 'what mental illness am I?'

Overall it's fair to say that A Better Place is not a show for the faint hearted.

It was, at times, challenging but there were plenty of laughs amongst this tale of depression and salvation.

If you are searching for that personal touch I do doubt that many other comedians at this festival will lay themselves as bare as Chris Brain bravely did on a dreary Monday evening.

Chris Brain - A Better Place runs until Saturday 23rd May at Auckland's The Classic Studio