Malaysia’s leading comedy group, the Malaysian Association of Chinese Comedians
, or fondly known as the MACC
– which, by the way, has no affiliation or correlation to the Malaysian Anti-Corruption Commission so don’t get any ideas – is back on the road for their annual tour.
Douglas Lim, Dr Jason Leong, Phoon Chi Ho, and Kuah Jenhan
are ready to bring another round of tongue-in-cheek jokes, just like their past themes, ‘Planet of the Apeks’, ‘I Want To Touch A Douglas’, ‘Now That’s What I Call Jokes’, ‘Bromance of the Four Kingdoms’, and more.
Now, what makes this year’s tour different from their previous shows is the fact that it is their tenth tour and, sadly, their final one as the MACC.
Themed ‘The Goodbye Tour’
, MACC Mania X
will be the last time the four stand-up comedians tour together.
Whether you want to pronounce the title of the tour as “ex” or “ten” is entirely up to you. Like the iPhone.
Jokes aside, the four men have decided to stop touring together after the final round because it is time that they focus on their solo projects.
“It’s good coming into this when first we started just as four comics who could only tell jokes. But now after 10 years, we are involved in scripts, productions, marketing, advertising, campaigns, and other projects. It’s good, but we only have 24 hours a day and 365 days a year,” Douglas said.
Each year, the gang has found it increasingly challenging to keep up with their schedules together as more solo work come their way.
While the audience only attends one show and the tour typically lasts for one month, the preparation alone takes at least between three to four months.
Writing a new show every year can be exciting yet demanding. With packed schedules and limited time, it became a running joke to call it the final tour among themselves every year in the past few annual tours.
This time, it is for real.
The original MACC first started in 2009 as an avenue for them to test the waters as comedians because there was nowhere for them to try out their new material.
“If we could get two to three corporate shows a month, we had to practise and get material for that job. So an MACC show was for us to gather once a year, grab all our material and start doing that,” Douglas said.
The concept of the MACC is also a comedy show that is one of a kind because of its lineup, it never changes.
“With the same lineup, the audience have no choice but to buy tickets and watch all of us, as opposed to an open mic night where they get a ticket and take a gamble without knowing who is going to show up,” Jenhan said.
Thankfully, the group has successfully put on sold-out shows every year since then.
In the beginning, there were plenty of misconceptions associated to the name of their group. People thought that they were an actual association and wanted to join them!
“We still get questions from people asking to join the ‘association’ until recently. Somebody even asked us for help to source for Chinese comedians,” Chi Ho said.
Many also thought that they were Chinese-speaking. Some didn’t even know that they were a comedy group and were only attending their shows purely because they were Chinese by ethnicity.
And the most common misconception is that people expected them to perform comedy sketches and plays, where in actual fact, they are four individual comedians who don’t appear on stage together.
Since then, they have had to include a disclaimer in all their promotional posters stating that their show is a stand-up comedy in English.
Although it is sad to see the MACC take a break from performing together, the fact that they are focusing on their individual projects means that the comedy scene in Malaysia is more active than it has ever been.
“I believe that Kuala Lumpur has the best comedy scene in Southeast Asia. We have grown exponentially. Even though we are facing tough times economically, the industry is still robust and people are buying tickets to watch comedy,” Jason said.
That alone speaks volumes about how resilient the local comedy scene is.
“A lot of people don’t know this, but we get visiting comics from different countries almost every week and they love performing here because they are surprised to see how much we Malaysians know about the rest of the world,” Chi Ho added.
Hence the members of the MACC are looking forward to close this chapter with a bang at The Goodbye Tour, and it is safe to say that the fans can expect a spectacle.
“I think we can expect quite a few personal stories in addition to our comedic observations and commentary,” Douglas said.
The 2-hour show will be the gang’s longest show together ever and we trust that it could get emotional, especially during the final show in Kuala Lumpur.
“We’ve worked very hard and we hope that the fans will enjoy it and come to say goodbye with us,” Jason added.
Of course, MACC Mania X is not the be-all-end-all of the MACC because they will still be involved in each other’s projects in one way or another.
If all goes well, Jason plans to perform in Malaysia, Singapore, Hong Kong, London, Australia, and the United States for his own solo tour next year.
He has also started a production company with Jenhan called Two Funny Productions
and some of the projects in the pipeline may involve storytelling contests for school children, regional comedy competitions, and so on.
Jenhan himself have done several festivals in Australia, so he is also planning to stage his own solo show here in Kuala Lumpur.
Speaking of the land Down Under, Chi Ho is also considering working the comedy scene in Australia next year.
As for the brain behind the MACC, Douglas said he wants to take over the rap and hip hop industry.
“The tour is going well, comedy here is in good hands, so why not do some hip hop?” he said.
We are not entirely sure whether he is joking or not, but we shall wait and see.
MACC Mania X: The Goodbye Tour
has kicked off their tour around Malaysia, starting in Penang, all the way through Johor, Singapore, Kota Kinabalu, Kuching, Hong Kong, Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Perth, and finally ending at HGH Convention Centre in Kuala Lumpur
on 14, 15 and 16 November
The grand finale in Kuala Lumpur will be their biggest show yet, with merchandise up for grabs, food trucks, and so on.
Well, we can foresee a lot of laughing and probably some crying as well.
For the full event listing and tickets, visit the official MACC Mania X website
. You can also follow the Facebook
page for the latest news and updates on the gang.
You don’t want to miss these legends at the comedy event of the year, so grab your tickets now!