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'Angry' comedy heads to Melbourne



Colin Ebsworth, Sean Conway, raw comedy winner & Sam Cribb. Photographer: Andrew Ritchie Colin Ebsworth, Sean Conway, raw comedy winner & Sam Cribb. Photographer: Andrew Ritchie

SEAN Conway is a nonchalant kind of guy.

Partial to kicking it back with a beer and a laugh, he’s your quintessential Aussie male.

Get him up on stage, though, and all hell breaks loose as his inner Mr Hyde unleashes. 

The Willagee funnyman – known for his ‘angry’ humour – is this year’s WA Raw Comedy winner and together with securing the prestigious title, he gets to shock a whole new array of unsuspecting audiences at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, commencing March 27.

Community chatted to the 27-year-old about his edgy brand of stand-up and the subjects that irked him most.

Surprisingly, his biggest gripe involves little furry animals of the meowing kind.

“I talk about my hatred of cats a lot in my routine,” Sean shared.

“One woman came up after a show and said, ‘what’s the deal, why don’t you like cats?’ I said, ‘well because I’m allergic to them and they annoy me.’ She was deeply offended.

“During another gig, I needed to be escorted out because the crowd didn’t like my material, including my political stance on gay marriage and marijuana laws.

“No one does anything good unless a few people get upset. I don’t set out to be controversial, I just want to be honest with myself and talk about the stuff I believe in.”

While Sean is displeasing some, he’s clearing delighting many more.

So what is it about this relative-newcomer, inspired by US comedian Lewis Black renowned for his irate rants, that has most audiences in stitches?

“I don’t know why I appeal to people. If I’m happy with the material that’s’ all that matters because I don’t tell jokes to make others laugh, I tell them to make me laugh,” Sean shared.  

“I didn’t expect to win Raw Comedy; I didn’t even win my heat. The judges called me afterwards saying they liked my work and I’d done a good enough job to earn a spot in the semi-finals.

“‘Ok’, I thought, ‘now I really have to up the ante’ and so I wrote a bunch of new jokes, which ended up getting a big reaction.”

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