David Kibuuka: Tripping the late-night limelight

He is the overzealous foreign correspondent of Late Night News with Loyiso Gola (LNN), which ended its seventh season on e.tv and the eNews channel a week ago. 

David Kibuuka’s unique blend of humour, intelligence and understanding of his audience has seen him become one of the most celebrated talents in his field. 

Kibuuka, who hails from Uganda, regularly features in television shows, films and some of the best comedy festivals in South Africa. 

Last year he  won the Standard Bank Ovation Award in the Comedy and Variety category at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown. 

Why do you think LNN has been so successful?
South Africa is a political country and it is a political show.

What’s the best part of being a comedian in South Africa?
Comedy is an outlet and comedy in South Africa is in a new and fresh stage. Comedy has not been as free and welcomed as it is now, which makes being part of this phase very exciting. 

Where in the world would you not want to work as a comedian?
Zimbabwe, North Korea and Pakistan, all dictator countries. 

What would you classify as the worst part of the comedy scene right now?
We need to be funnier about different things in our society. Constantly talking about race is not a true reflection of our environment. In real life you don’t just laugh at and about race, but comedy gives that impression. We need to give a proper reflection of society. 

Columnists battle when it comes to getting their readers to grasp satire.  Does South Africans really get satire, considering how popular LNN has become? 

There are a lot of things that South Africans have not been exposed to and people like to assume things. Like that their readers will understand what they are trying to say. Great acts and writers are able to make it simple so that the audience understands. You have to communicate your message based on who is receiving it and not you. 

What has been your worst experience or incident as a stage performer?
When retards booed me off-stage and I call them that because it was the recording of a television show early in the morning.  I was booked to entertain the audience during breaks but the worst part was that they liked the poet. Like, seriously? Like what are you doing here? Don’t you have a job? People like that are just retards. 

Which do you prefer, working in film or stand-up?    
It depends, but I am not a film star.  I have been featured in a couple, yes.  So I would have to say stand-up because that is what I do more of. 

What other projects are you working on?
Right now I am building an ark. I can’t really tell you what it is or what it will look like but when you see it you will say: ‘Ah, that is what he was building.’ Look out for it in January next year. 

How have you changed how you do comedy over the years?
I used to do it in an extremely prepared way but now I can do it more off the cuff than the time I was overcome and led by nerves. The next three years will be very exciting. This is a good place to be. 

What’s your favourite place to escape city life?
My house is a fantastic place. I don’t do any work there because it has to be a sanctuary, somewhere I can relax. I also love Mozambique. 

What music are you currently listening to?
I like all sorts of music. Right now I am listening to a lot of soul music. I actually have a different iPod for different music. 

What’s the last film you watched that blew you away?
I recently watched Casablanca. It’s a good story, a quintessential movie. 

Follow David Kibuuka on Twitter @davidkibuuka


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