KOREA’s champion comedy quartet, Ong-Als, are a global powerhouse in the making, and we were lucky enough to be among the comedy fans who witnessed their quirky, synced-up genius at the up-close preview yesterday. Do not miss these blabbering clown princes…
PART skilled circus act, part cheeky daredevil troupe, part Three Stooges reincarnation; the watertight and multi-skilled Ong-Als brought the house down with a hyper-rehearsed blend of physical comedy, masterful(ly funny) sketches, advanced choreography and character acting, movement, lights, sound and the comedic kitchen sink.
So, five (5) reasons not to miss the Ong-Als this week:
1.) They’ve got the art of slapstick down pat.
Sure they look pretty dumb with their colourful infant’s pyjamas, matching infantile behaviour and their generally mumbling, non-speak schtick. Sure, they remind you of a messed-up, Far East version of Larry, Curly and Moe. But that’s their calling card – and they flash it light years better than your average Raja Lawak wannabe comedy group, bringing a universal Asian flavour, like an explosive mix of (Charlie) Chaplin and Afdlin (Shauki).
2.) They know tragicomedy well and all that theatre/thespian stuff.
The four members of Ong-Als seem to have invented their own weird language consisting of baby talk, crude noises, exaggerated facial expressions and caveman grunts and gestures. All of which amounts to…genius, or close enough: There’s no audience in the world that can’t dig them, with the language barrier gone. Experiencing them live is a bit like a silent film which doesn’t take itself seriously (at all).
3.) They incorporate magic tricks, on top of all that.
Watch for a stunt involving a Coke can (or as they speak it onstage, “koka koya”), and the Criss Angel-like ease with which the fat one executes the trick. You’ll also get why they have a name for what they do: Blabbering Comedy. Generic they are not.
4.) They do music, too.
The other wigged one is a skilled beat-boxer, world-class in fact, and you may find yourself getting your feng tau on right there at the gig before the night is done. There’s also evidence of musicianship in their stupid dances and there’s an interactive gag about ‘timing’, which suggests that these four guys might secretly have a moonlighting pop band on the side.
5.) They’re endorsed by Harith Iskander himself (and are going supernova soon).
When the godfather himself thinks they’re the bomb, what excuse is there not to at least see them? Local comedy’s icon Harith has outdone himself curating these guys into the international bill of his first festival, and it’s with fair reason: they are pretty much the Beatles of their brand of universal Asian comedy, only with multi-coloured baby onesies instead of matching moptops and suits.
Just wait for the grand and unexpected END (there’s a big clue if you needed one) – you’ll see that these expert funnymen fully know what they are doing and are more serious about their craft then meets the eye. Ong-Als are like the Big Bang of comedy, Asian slapstick’s answer to K-Pop dominion.
*ONG-ALS play the ‘To Know Malaysia Is To LAUGH MALAYSIA’ Gala Night as headliners of the first KL International Comedy Festival (KLICFest) 2015 at the Manhattan Ballroom of Berjaya Times Sqaure this Sunday night, September 20th. Entry to their experience is up for grabs from MYR38-158. Click on to the ticketing site and the KLICFest official site for info.