Aunty Donna is not a middle-aged woman, just in case you were confused. Aunty Donna is a sketch comedy group that has been amusing the internet (and occasionally real live people) since 2011. Mark Samual Bonanno, Broden Kelly and Zachary Ruane are…Aunty Donna.
We have the dubious distinction of premiering their 2015 MICF trailer on Pop Culture-y, as well as having a quick chat with them. We’re also excited to offer two readers double passes to be the first to watch their brand new MICF show at ACMI on Thursday 26 March at 9.45pm. To win, just add a Facebook comment telling us why you think their name is Aunty Donna. Competition closes on the 20th March.
You guys are kind of a bunch of weirdos, but you make it work. Any advice for the weirdos out there?
Blend in whilst out in public, and get professional help. If you see your GP they can get you on this thing called a Mental Health Plan. A MHP gets you free access to a psychologist for an agreed number of sessions.
Tell us about being mentored by Tim Minchin. Is he as cool as he seems?
Yeah he’s a rad cool dude. The whole time we’re working with him he was wearing a backwards baseball cap, spraying graffiti and doing bmx bicycle tricks. Seriously though he’s been instrumental in teaching us how to land a kick flip.
There isn’t any real theme or idea tying your sketches together. How do you tackle the writing process, considering how one sketch is so different from the next?
We usually start with words. We start with about 90 or so words picked at random from books and poems. Then we pick our favorite words and turn those words into sentences. Before we know it we have a lot of sentences, sometimes one too many. But we need the sentences to start writing paragraphs. Once we have paragraphs, well, then we’re really cooking with gas. And that’s how we do it.
Has anyone ever actually thought you were a middle aged woman called Aunty Donna?
Yes. People have come to the live shows expecting see an old lady doing cabaret classics. Usually they feel let down and we get a lot of walk outs.
You’re doing a show for the Comedy Festival – do you have any preferences for live vs filmed comedy?
We prefer the live comedy to be performed in front of an audience and the filmed comedy to be performed in front of a film crew. Live comedy is our favourite but film is probably the most fun to do, having said that, live is a lot of fun, and film is too.
Can you convince our readers to go to your shows in twenty words or less?
Tell us more about the Wednesday Walking Bus? Are you worried you’ll get freeloaders trying to get your information and hilarity for free?
We started this in 2014 as a ploy to get people to our Wednesday shows as they are hard to sell because it’s in the middle of the week. The ploy worked, and we’re doing it again.
Top picks for this year’s MICF?
John Kearns, Dr Professor Neal Portenza, Anne Edmonds, Wil Anderson, Stuart Daulman, Demi Lardner, Fancy Boy, Backwards Anorak, Wil Anderson, Geraldine Quinn, Geraldine Hickey, Sammy J and Randy, Tessa Waters, Cal Wilson, Wil Anderson, Celia Paquola, Max and Ivan, Wil Anderson, Claire Hooper, Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wil, Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wall Anderson, Wil Anderson Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson, Wil Anderson.
Aunty Donna will be performing at ACMI in the Melbourne International Comedy Festival from Thursday 26 March – Sunday 19 April (except Mondays). Tickets start from $22. To book, go to the Comedy Festival website, Ticketmaster or phone 1300 660 013.