Culture Victoria

Comedy: No laughing matter - vale John Pinder

By Mary Kenneally Posted Under Comedy - No Laughing Matter

John Pinder left us on 27 May 2015 and is mourned by so many in ​Victoria, in ​A​ustralia,​​​​ and around the world.

John Pinder on stage
The late, great John Pinder on stage at the Last Laugh Theatre Restaurant. Image: Rennie Ellis, courtesy of Rennie Ellis Photographic Archive

John ​was ​described as the number one alternative theatre entrepreneur.​ He made things happen.​

He opened venues ​in Melbourne ​​in the 1970s ​where creative performers could pour our their exuberant happy, joyous, funny, crazy, eclectic​,​clever imaginative genius: ​TF Much Ballroom (FItzroy 1971), The Flying Trapeze Cafe (Fitzroy 1974), and The Last Laugh Theatre Restaurant and Zoo (Collingwood 1976).​ ​

Without him, we would ​not have the wondrous and internationally important Circus Oz, nor the hugely successful Melbourne International Comedy Festival. He forged the pathway for Australian performers to the stages of The Edinburgh Festival, which lead to the international circuit that Australian comedy performers enjoy today. ​

In 2014, John generously gave two interviews to the "Comedy - no laughing matter" project​​.​ Thank you John, and Vale.

John Pinder
John Pinder in the foyer of the Last Laugh with the flying fantasies by Andrew Trollope. Image: Rennie Ellis, courtesy of Rennie Ellis Photographic Archive and State Library of Victoria
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