Aussie comic Oliver Twist does not just share a name with Dickens’ cheeky little pickpocket. He’s had as colourful a life, if not more.
A natural born storyteller, propelled from the cold alleys of a Malawian refugee camp to the warm spotlight of the Australian stage, Twist is coming to Campbelltown Library on Thursday, 9 November (6pm) to talk about his heartbreaking and humorous new book Jali.
Joining Twist as “conversation partner” is fellow comedian, actor and writer Natnael Damena, best known for raising the roof at The Sydney Comedy Store and Enmore Theatre Comedy Club.
Fleeing the Rwandan civil war at the age of four, Twist spent his childhood in Malawi, first in a refugee camp, and later in the city where his mother and father started a small convenience store. After acceptance into the Australian government’s refugee intake, the family arrived in Ipswich in 2014 to begin a new life.
Then eighteen, Twist already knew he was funny, and now he was in a country where comedy clubs and open mic sessions allowed him to prove it. He was soon a stage regular in Queensland at Brisbane’s Sit Down Comedy Club and Based Comedy on the Gold Coast.
In 2017 Twist entered the RAW Comedy competition and made it to the national finals in Melbourne. That was the year he decided to make the move to Sydney, and to begin telling stories in a new way.
Within a week of his arrival he had written a one-man play Jali (a West African term for a storyteller), telling the tale of his family’s journey.
Jali premiered in early 2021 to rave reviews and an entirely sold out season and has now been crafted into the memoir that Twist will discuss at Campbelltown Library.
Copies of Jali will be available for purchase and signing on the night.
As an added bonus, there will be a lucky door prize, where one lucky attendee will have a chance to win a signed copy of Oliver Twist’s Jali.
Register to attend here: https://www.campbelltown.nsw.gov.au/Whats-On/Author-Talk-Oliver-Twist