Melbourne International Comedy Festival acknowledges the traditional custodians of the lands upon which we work and live. We acknowledge the Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples' spirit, imagination and rich history of storytelling and humour that is an inspiration to all Australians.

We accept the invitation to walk together with First Nations people towards a more positive future for Australia, as described in the Uluru Statement From The Heart.

Browse Shows

Quick Links





Sign In
{{ cartMsg }}
{{ cartMsg }}
Past Event
Mo Tu We Th Fr Sa Su
  26 27 28 29 30 31
1 2 3 4 5 6 7
8 9 10 11 12 13 14
15 16 17 18 19 20
Pick a time
4:30pm (sold out) 7:30pm (sold out)
Extra show

Tightarse Tuesday
Laugh pack
Past event
Melbourne International Comedy Festival proudly presents

John Kearns The Varnishing Days (United Kingdom)

Melbourne International Comedy Festival proudly presents

John Kearns The Varnishing Days (UK)

Winner Best Show 2014 Edinburgh Comedy Awards 

Winner Best Newcomer Award 2013 Edinburgh Comedy Awards 

Nominee Most Outstanding Show 2014 & 2015 Melbourne International Comedy Festival

The Varnishing Days is the heart-stopping, glasses-dropping, hard-rocking, wig-shaking, levothyroxine-taking, knee-knocking, boot-licking, justifying, teeth rattling, digressing new show from multI-award-winning UK comedian John Kearns.

Ten years since he debuted at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe, John is still the only comedian to have ever won the Edinburgh Comedy Award for Best Show (Shtick) and Best Newcomer (Sight Gags for Perverts) back to back in the awards 40-year history. An internationally acclaimed live performer, he has delivered his "richly, idiosyncratic comedy" (The Guardian) across the world, notably picking up two Melbourne International Comedy Festival Most Outstanding Show Award nominations along the way and twice-voted one of the Evening Standard’s 1000 Most Influential Londoners.

As seen on Taskmaster UK (Channel 4), Top Coppers (BBC Three), Cats does Countdown (Channel 4), Drunk History (Comedy Central) and co-hosting Guessable (Comedy Central) with Sara Pascoe.

‘Your new king of comedy.’ ★★★★★ EveningStandard (UK)

‘The finest set of his career… what a show.’ ★★★★★ The Guardian (UK)

‘Most will surely be won over… with the delightful, poetic flourish that defines all his work… perfectly structured with overlapping themes and surprising callbacks… It’s all rather wonderful.’ ★★★★★ Chortle (UK)

‘A flawless fusion of gut-busting laughter and razor-sharp observations... comedic gold.’ ★★★★★ Broadway Baby (UK)

‘This is yet another superb hour from a gifted writer and performer, suffused with beauty, tenderness and frequent, exceptional hilarity.’ ★★★★★ The List (UK)

Suitable for audiences 15+

This show contains: Mild language.


Other shows suggested by this artist

Before and after the show

  • Eat, drink, laugh, repeat

    Check out our partner bars and restaurants across the CBD - many offering exclusive deals for ticketholders!

    More info
  • The Festival Club

    Your very own late-night treat for laughs, dancing and all-round good times.

    More info