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Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 11 December 2018

White Yardie ahead of his Dubai show

Expect patois-packed humour when internet sensation White Yardie returns to Dubai this weekend

White Yardie will perform at Tribeca JA Ocean View Hotel on October 7.
White Yardie will perform at Tribeca JA Ocean View Hotel on October 7.

White Yardie, also known as Prince Harry, is fast becoming one of Britain’s most popular comedians. His success is a tale of modern times: his social-commentary videos on Instagram, posted for family and friends, quickly went viral.

Viewers began clamouring for more, and it wasn’t long before the 33-year-old realised he had found his calling and took up the profession full-time. Fast-forward four years and the comedian has become an internet sensation. He has also won Best Comedian at the UK Entertainment Awards for two consecutive years.

“I didn’t plan to become a comedian, it kind of happened by accident,” Yardie says. “I was just posting Instagram videos about things I noticed or that annoyed me, and my family and friends starting asking for more. I started posting more and then all of a sudden the whole thing took off. Since I decided to do it professionally, I’ve gone from strength to strength.”

White Yardie speaks in full Jamaican patois. It’s unexpected and somehow makes his already-witty observations even more noteworthy.

“It’s part of the reason I call myself ‘Prince Harry’, he explains “It is part of the surprise people get when they hear my accent. They’re not expecting that.”

Yardie’s parents moved to Jamaica when he was 3 months old.

“Some people think my accent is a put-on and try to catch me out, but this is how I talk all the time. It’s my real accent,” he says.

It’s the funnyman’s fourth visit to the UAE, and this time he will playing a new monthly comedy event, Stand-Up Dubai.

“Dubai is amazing; it is a great city,” he says. “There is always something happening. I think it would be a nice place to live, but it strikes me as somewhere you would need to have a good job to have a nice life.”

Yardie says the Stand-Up Dubai audience can expect a show in which he intends to reveal a bit more of his background.

“I will be telling a little bit of my story, how I was raised in Jamaica and then came across to the UK,” he says.

It is a story that might strike a chord with many expats, given the difficulties that can accompany repatriation. Not for Yardie, though – on his return to the UK at the age of 17, something became apparent to him.

“It was a strange experience. I only realised I was white when I got to the UK,” he says. “You don’t really experience colour in Jamaica, so it was the first time I actually felt white. I grew up in Jamaican culture totally and it was all I knew; then suddenly you are dropped back to the UK. I was OK, though – I had been for holidays and I had some friends here, so I did not have a hard time fitting in.”

White Yardie joins London comedian Kevin J at Stand-Up Dubai, the first of a season of events on the first Saturday of every month.

Stand-Up Dubai is on Saturday at Tribeca, JA Ocean View Hotel, JBR. Doors open at 7pm, show starts at 8.30pm. Tickets cost Dh80. For more information, visit www.thoseguys.ae/standupdubai

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