The anatomy of Maltese laughter | Malcolm Alden

Stand-up comedian Malcolm Alden chats to us about ‘Are You Havin’ a Laugh?’, a comedy show he’s hosting at Mojo’s Bar, Paceville – featuring comedians Steve Hili and Malcolm Galea.

Malcolm Alden.
Malcolm Alden.

There has been a sudden boom in stand-up comedy on the island over the past year. Why did this happen so suddenly, do you think?

I think stand-up comedy has always been a favourite form of entertainment on the island. We could see that from the 'LOL Stand-Up Comedy Shows' that are hosted annually, they're pretty successful. The Wembley Store Boys were then able to give confidence to local aspiring comedians by providing them with a reliable venue. They've shown what potential this form of art has here, and that has influenced many others to follow suit. Before that I never thought anyone would find Maltese stand-up that funny. I never had much faith in it. Turns out I was wrong!

What do you think Maltese audiences respond to most readily when it comes to comedy?

From my experience, it's easy to say that the audience responds pretty well to everything, though it's clear that the mockery of Maltese stereotypes, slapstick humour and the occasional political joke are mostly favoured. What was most surprising to me was how well some audiences responded to dark or black humour. Considering the conservative mentality we have on this Island, I did not expect it.

What led you to choose Steve Hili and Malcolm Galea for this particular show?

Well, both Steve and Malcolm have built a reputation as comedic greats in the local scene, not just in Stand-Up comedy but also with their involvement in plays, pantomimes, radio shows and sketch shows. They differ in styles too, so there will be something for everyone when watching these guys perform. They're energetic, witty, they have brilliant stage presence and just a touch of dark humour. There will be a bit of everything, that's for sure!

Can we expect more stand-up Comedy shows at Mojo's in the near future?

That's the plan. We would like to transform it into a venue that is renowned for entertaining evenings that provide top notch stand-up comedians, good atmosphere and the right crowd. It all depends on how well we do this time round. But we are confident that we have the talent to attract enough people to keep this going for years to come, helping us expand the local stand-up scene and exploit its obvious potential to the fullest.

Are You Havin' a Laugh will be taking place on December 8. Doors open at 18:00.


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