x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 19 February 2018

Comedy Central set to launch first Middle East-produced stand-up show

The show will be hosted by Emirati comic Ali Al Sayed and Arab-American stand-up pioneer Mo Amer.

Ali Al Sayed will host of the new stand-up show Comedy Central presents. Pawan Singh / The National
Ali Al Sayed will host of the new stand-up show Comedy Central presents. Pawan Singh / The National

Comedy Central, which launched its Middle East channel (available on OSN) last January, is about to launch is first regionally produced show.

Comedy Central Presents will follow in the footsteps of its namesake on the US channel by making (or breaking) the careers of the finest stand up comics in the region.

The show, which was filmed in Stereo Arcade, Dubai, will be hosted by Emirati comic Ali Al Sayed and Arab-American stand-up pioneer Mo Amer, who has supported Dave Chappelle, among others.

Al Sayed says he hopes it will be more than simply a TV show, that it will also prove to be a catalyst for the development of the region’s burgeoning stand-up scene.

“I can honestly say the show is going to exceed everybody’s expectations,” he says. “It is a dream to work with Comedy Central and 35 comedians will have their dream come true this February.

“Everybody is exchanging numbers and inviting each other to perform in their cities. A new community is being built off the back of this show. The experience has been a blast. This is what Comedy Central does, they make comedy work.”

Comedy Central Presents is the first stand-up comedy programme filmed in the GCC. The 10 half-hour shows will gather more 30 of the region’s most promising Arab comedians. The diverse group includes professionals and first-timers who will perform in Arabic and English, blending international and regional tastes.

Raffaelle Annechinno, head of Comedy Central parent company Viacom, said the new show reflects the channel’s commitment to regional production.

“One of our main objectives for Comedy Central in the region is to discover and showcase new talent who will become points of reference for the comedy scene, both locally as well as in other territories,” he says.

“This local production is a great step towards achieving that goal, and we look forward to continued success for the channel and the brand in the Middle East.”

Comedy Central Presents begins on February 5. Comedy Central is available on OSN

cnewbould@thenational.ae