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Behind the Punchlines: 2024 Deadly Funny Finalists Share Their Journey

Monday 27 May, 2024

On the day of the 2024 Deadly Funny National Grand Final, three incredible finalists sat down with Sermsah Bin Saad and Mikaela Simpson from 3KND Kool 'N' Deadly radio station and shared their thoughts on comedy, opened up about their unique styles, and recounted how they got started in the comedy scene. Read about their inspiring stories and get a behind-the-scenes look at what drives these talented comedians to make us laugh.

Zane Harlem - Wiradjuri (ACT) Finalist

I am the ACT finalist, representing ACT, my family is from Wiradjuri though, my mom's from Peak Hill. Most of the comedy that I've done in Canberra has been just open mics. I'm still quite new. I started (comedy) last year, at the start of January. A lot of my humour is more based on just random things that I think, less than any sort of political stance or anything like that.

I have the approach that, so long as you can make it funny you can kind of talk about anything.


Kirsten Lynch - Noongar (WA) Finalist

I always tell everyone I'm the family joke, so I just roll with it. I’m a yarn teller. I can tell a good yarn, but when I do comedy a lot of it is all just personal stories that have happened to me or thoughts of mine. So it's more just getting up there telling the yarn, and I know my yarn.

I was only saying this morning that I feel really confident about doing Deadly Funny because I feel like it's something I've just been born to do. I feel confident about it and it’s about time I show the world to me.


Kalah Lovegrove - Ngarrindjeri (SA) Finalist

It was two months ago when I first tried stand-up and did the heat and then it all happened so fast. I did the heat, then I did the final, and then after the final 48 hours later, I filled in for Andy Saunders at the Fringe. And now I'm here at the National Grand Final.

I’m Ngarrindjeri, I'm from Murray Bridge and I'm related to Kevin Kropinyeri. Kevin was the one that encouraged me to do this. We were at a Christian conference in December, and he just mentioned ‘Why don't you try Deadly Funny’ and I'm like ‘nah that’s shame job I wouldn't do that’.

But my mum always said to me ‘Kalah you should do stand-up. You've just gotta get up and tell a yarn and you'd have everyone in stitches.’ And she passed away in 2021. So that thought came into my head. So this is to honour her.

So, my whole thing is being a Christian mum and a black mum, but I want to share my story in order to give others hope. That's the biggest message I've got. No matter what you've been through, no matter what trauma you've dealt with, no matter what has happened in your life, you can try something new, step out and just keep going and don't give up.


Missed the 2024 Deadly Funny National Grand Final? Stay tuned for more information about Deadly Funny on NITV soon.