Film maker, Mzonke Maloney won the prestigious Jive Funny Championships at Canal Walk and now moves onto the bill of the Jive Cape Town Funny Festival.

Originally from Klerksdorp, Mzonke has lived in Cape Town since an early age. A film maker by profession who was fortunate to study the trade in Los Angeles, he now directs commercials for a living.

He has been interested in comedy all his life and was challenged to go on stage by comic Lazola Gola for whom he wrote material. That was a year ago. He entered the Jive Funny Championships with 86 other aspirant comics, and won the competition.

The Jive Funny Championships is South Africa’s largest competition, and searches for Cape Town’s next great comic. Held over the month of May, twenty four comedians made it through the initial screening process. Four heats were run on each Wednesday of May at the Canal Walk Auditorium – each producing a winner. On one or two occasions where judging was particularly difficult, an extra wild card entrant was selected.

The heats were judged by a selection of A-grade comedians and Jive Cape Town Funny Festival director Eddy Cassar – all of whom know exactly what it takes to navigate the local industry. The finalists performed their three-minute set at the Canal Walk Auditorium on Saturday, 27 May, in front of judges David Kramer and Alan Committie.

The Championships is the social entrepreneurship project of the Jive Cape Town Funny Festival which runs at the Baxter Theatre from 5 June – 2 July. The program has been part of the Funny Festival for the last ten years and has seen winners develop a career in the art form.

The winner of the Jive Funny Championships laughs all the way onto the main stage of the Jive Cape Town Funny Festival, where he / she joins the prestigious line-up of top local and international acts.

This much-lauded title allows the budding comic to experience comedy on a big scale, playing to 600 people every night for an entire month.

Other prizes include a laptop and airtime from MTN, a gift card from Canal Walk and R5 000 from the Jive Cape Town Funny Festival, and a three-minute nightly spot on the Jive Cape Town Funny Festival.

Mzonke was joined by these talented finalists, who battled it out for the crown:

  • Simanga Chikavhu  – Oakdale
  • Wesley Paulse – Strandfontein
  • Elton Zvinavashe – Parow Valley
  • Celine Tshika – Vredehoek
  • Stuart Botha – Grassy Park
  • Zachary Esau – Vaguard Estate