London-born to Nigerian parents, Gina Yashere started out her adult career as an elevator engineer. When she found herself stepping into the spotlight as a standup comedian, like with her previous role the only way for Ms Yashere was up. She’s a funny girl with a lucky streak a mile long.
She’s been called the next Whoopi Goldberg (which I’m sure really bugs the current Whoopi Goldberg!) by the British media, and just a few years back she made it to the final cut of the Global Reality Stand Up competition: Last Comic Standing. She also took out the prestigious Best Female at the Black Comedy Awards. She is well known on British television and has developed a cult following after having appeared as a regular on a panel show that ran for three years on BBC 2 (Blouse and Skirt). Her infectious personality and observations on everything from TV programs to the worldwide image of Nigerians has wowed audiences not just in the UK but in America, Dubai, Hong Kong, Singapore, Europe and, pretty soon, Australia.
Her recent American success has seen her relocate to LA, a brand-new experience for this funny girl on a rise.
‘Life in LA has been very good. Love the apartment, though parking is a pain in the arse, and there is no garden. Apparently, only rich people in LA get outside space, so I’m hoping to graduate to a balcony at some point, and maybe the sounds of birdsong in the morning, rather than the woman next door screaming at her toddlers. I’ve been doing lots of comedy clubs in and around LA, and I’m getting recognised wherever I go, which I’m used to in England, but it’s really weird that it’s now happening to me in America! I’ve signed with new management here in LA, which is great, so I’m now a truly international comic in that I’m represented on both sides of the Atlantic!’ As for her close call with international stardom on Last Comic Standing, Gina laughingly admits: ‘I actually voted myself off the show!’
Gina Yashere is in Australia for the Melbourne International Comedy Festival and will appear in Byron Bay for one show only! It’s her third visit here and a definite favourite for the committed raw food eater who just fell in love with Byron’s eclectic street culture.
Monday 18 February at the Byron Bay Services Club, at the Pandanus Lounge with Mandy Nolan as MC and Ellen Briggs as support. Tickets for this international comedian are $20/25 and can be booked on 6619 0529 or bought directly at the Byron Services Club. Show starts at 8pm.