I Learnt Something Once - Justin "Rusty" White

Christchurch comedy veteran Justin “Rusty” White is near the end of his NZ tour of his show “I Learnt Something Once”. This edition was at The Thirsty Dog on K rd, surrounded by sex shops and a drag queen cabaret. A crowd of around 30 looked a little small in a room that would hold 50-60.

The show opened with MC and producer Snap Ruse Websites in a blue tartan suit from his sponsor Oppo Suits. Snap started off by referencing the eccentric bar owner, whose claim to fame was writing the Tux Dog Biscuits jingle, which ended up with him on stage singing “Tux keeps them full of life...”.

Next was opening act young rookie comic Joe Daymond. Joe has only been performing for a couple of months but has been impressing those in the industry as well as audiences. He did a nice tight 7 minutes that was well received.

Rusty took the stage opening with the worlds shortest blues song (with probably the worlds longest intro) which showcased his guitar playing chops. He then moved into his well crafted finely honed jokes. They were well received by some of the audience but it was a struggle to get reactions from a large section. It didn’t help that one woman couldn’t help shouting out her own random thoughts. Rusty put up with her for a while but finally had to shut her down. The bar owner then threw in an unscheduled break to boost bar sales. This was a blessing in disguise as Rusty reset and came back in the second half and really grabbed the crowd with some great longer stories and musical numbers, even joined on the drums by the aforementioned eccentric bar owner.

Was definitely a show of two distinct halves. Rusty’s performance and jokes were great in the first half but a lot of the audience seemed very conservative and were quite quiet but it showed his strength as a performer to come back in the second half and really pulled the crowd out of their shells and had them fizzing.

Justin White is a hidden gem of a comic who deserves to be better known.

If you see his name on a poster somewhere do yourself a favour and buy a ticket.