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Mike King

About The Show

Right from primary school, Mike King knew he was funny guy.  Although his two man stand up routine at Whenuapai Primary was brought to an abrupt halt when his partner changed schools, Mike continued on as a solo performer, single-handedly bringing school assemblies to an end.

After leaving school at 15, Mike started an apprenticeship as a chef.  While working for one of New Zealand's first licensed restaurant chains, he saw Billy T James perform - a performer who provided him with a huge source of inspiration.

At 19 he joined the Merchant Navy, travelling the world, but still harbouring a desire to be a comedian.  However, had it not been for a broken leg in 1994, Mike King's comedy may have continued only being outed at friends' parties and cousins' weddings.

At the time he broke his leg Mike was working as a chef on one of the Cook Strait ferries.  While recovering from his injury, he went to a comedy club and saw some "amazing" talent.  Returning there again and again over the next six weeks, he saw the same jokes being trotted out, and reassessed his opinion of the performers.

Betting the barman $400 if he got no laughs, Mike King did a six minute stint on stage and received a standing ovation from the audience.  Returning back into the audience after his gig, he met an Englishman who argued with him about whether this was really his first time on stage.  In the end the Englishman told him "If that's your first time, you're going to be famous".  It turned out that Mike had been arguing with none other than Ben Elton, well known writer and comedian.

However, there is much more to Mike King than just straight comedy, as anyone who has been to see Mike on his most recent national tours could attest to.  He doesn't pussy foot around tender issues such as racism, he just gets stuck in.  Mike's 1999 tour of New Zealand "Welcome to King Country" humorously addressed Maori/Pakeha issues in New Zealand's history, with the assistance of his trusty sidekick Radar (of Ngati Pakeha descent).

Mike King's television appearances include Comedy Central, Game of Two Halves, Strassman, TV Bloopers and Practical Jokes, Pulp Comedy, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner and most recently his own show - the Mike King Tonight Show.  Based on the style of David Lettermen's show, Mike King has introduced a successful tonight show format into New Zealand - something that has been attempted several times before without success.  The Mike King Tonight Show however held its ground, gaining great reviews and going from strength to strength each week.

Mike has already completed three national tours of New Zealand - in 1999, 2001 and 2003.  2003 was an especially busy year with the "Mike King National Pride Tour", the debut of the first "Mike King Tonight" series, plus regular shows - Game of Two Halves, Guess Who's Coming to Dinner and Commercial Chaos. Since being voted Comedian of the Year by Metro Magazine in both 1997 and 1999, he has been invited to perform at the prestigious Melbourne and Montreal comedy festivals and has also performed in London and Amsterdam.  Awarded the people's choice awards - 2001, 2002, 2003 "Metro Magazine Best Comedian" and 2003 "NZ Entertainment Awards, Best NZ Comedian".

To date, 2004 has been no quieter, with Mike recently representing New Zealand at the World Comedy Cup in Melbourne.

His also toured his "Return of the King" show (as part of the New Zealand International Comedy Festival) - a two hour blisteringly irreverent exposé of the country's changing attitudes and behaviour. 

No stone left uncovered, no culture left unbruised, Mike King is hard, funny, astute, sharp and unforgiving. 

Hard hitting, side splitting material tested on the harshest of critics ("if my wife laughs I know it's crap"), Mike is always a performer who is not be missed. 

The best compliment Mike King has ever been given was from a gay guy who told a friend of Mike's that he had just been to see Mike perform the night before.  Mike's friend said "Oh, but Mike King doesn't like you gay guys".  The gay guy said "Oh no, he hates everyone!". And that's pretty much it for Mike, no one is safe when it comes to his humour.