The winners of the 2018 South African Savanna Comics' Choice Awards were announced at The Lyric Theatre at Gold Reef City in Johannesburg on 8 September 2018.
It all kicked off on the famous Yellow Carpet where comedians, celebs, and the who’s who of the industry strutted their stuff to the flashes of cameras and the bright lights of TV crews vying for their attention, including famous faces like Johnny Clegg and more.
From there the more than 1,200 guests filled the theatre’s plush red seats to watch as the unique and hilarious awards show unfolded on stage; a world-class production of lighting, costume design, sound, and technology.
Every year is unique, but this year was certainly one of the best in the awards’ eight-year history. Themed around the ‘Rhythm of Funny’, every detail, line, and song spoke to the fantastic fusion between music and comedy, beautifully, and masterfully told through well-written and choreographed performances. Tying into the ‘Rhythm of Funny’ theme, Bombshelter Beast was this year’s surprise in-house band who threaded the show sequences together throughout the night and brought colourful and eclectic music to the production.
This year’s awards show was directed by Jefferson J. Bobs Tshabalala and co-written by comedians Lazola Gola, Gilli Apter, Camilo Saloojee, and Mo Mothebe.
The true showstoppers of the night, however, were definitely the 12 award recipients across the 12 categories, each of whom had to deliver five minutes of stand-up in lieu of an acceptance speech.
And the Waldos went to:
- Savanna Newcomer of the Year: Tsitsi Chiumya
- Chatz Connect Audience Choice Award: Abuti Lolo
- Comic’s Pen: Kagiso Lediga
- Next Level: Phil de Lange
- Flying Solo: Carvin Goldstone
- Lifetime Achiever: Pieter-Dirk Uys
- Game Changer: Loyiso Gola
- Best Friend of Comedy: Gino Fernandez
- Native Tongue: Siya Seya
- Comedy G: David Kau
- Savanna Pan-African Comic of the Year: Basketmouth (Nigeria)
- Savanna Comic of the Year: Carvin Goldstone
There were more than double the number of votes in the Chatz Connect Audience Choice Award category. This is the only category where the public votes for the winner, with more than 24,000 votes received across the five nominees.
This is the second time the Savanna Pan-African Comic of the Year Award was given out, and with Savanna’s ongoing commitment to comedy, this category is set to grow even more to reach more comedians across the continent.
As the recipient of the prestigious Lifetime Achiever Award, Pieter-Dirk Uys’s award was presented to him by Johnny Clegg, who brought the house down with a surprise performance of Asimbonanga
. Uys will be honoured at his own Grilling of a Lifetime on 28 September 2018
at The Venue in Melrose Arch, Johannesburg.
A special packaged programme of the awards show will be aired on 1Magic (DStv channel 103) in the coming weeks.