Dalin Oliver, 29, was once described as looking like a Lays’ chip with eyebrows.
That was during a “roast”, against Robby Collins, on The Ultimate Comedy Central Roast. Now Dalin, who is not afraid to make fun of himself, is back in the spotlight, after a nationwide tour in 2017, preparing for his one man stand-up comedy show Face for Radio.
It will be staged at the Baxter Theatre from Monday to Saturday September 10 to 15, and will take the audience back to when he was growing up, experiencing life in two worlds as he moved from a public school to a Model C school.
After his previous show, I came, I taught, I left, (“Retreat resident tickles funny bones”, Southern Mail, January 27 2016), he went on tour and came back with a creative bang to present his new show in which he gets nostalgic about living in Retreat. “I spent a part of my high school years at South Peninsula (Diep River) and the rest at Wynberg Boys’ and it was amazing adjusting.”
Dalin, who moved to Wynberg two years ago, describes himself as a “naughty ‘laaitie’” but adds that “I was never rude”.
And this he brings to his shows as well, making a point of not using any profanities in his performances.
Dalin only realised he was serious about being funny when he was studying to be a teacher.
He recalls one evening, in his third year while he was studying for a politics exams: “I didn’t feel like studying, that night, and I started writing jokes and told myself I wanted to be a comedian.
“I was googling comedy clubs and finding out how one gets on stage.
“My idea of comedy venues were the Baxter and the Artscape, but I never knew there were these amazing smaller clubs.
“On November 26, I got my first gig at Joker’s Comedy Club in Athlone, above the bottle store – at the age of 21.
“I was so nervous, but I invited my friends to the show. I looked at the audience, and saw a few chairs and people sitting on little crates. I don’t know if it was a good thing. But they laughed. I wasn’t great but I didn’t die. There were over 60 people and mostly friends.”
It was while he was on stage, in front of the audience, he said, that he knew comedy was what he wanted to do.
When he told his mother, Linda, and father, Gerard, that he wanted to be a comedian, they were very supportive. “They never shunned me (and) that was really cool,” he said.
And while his focus was on building his comedy career, Dalin did complete his tertiary education and taught for a while. Recalling some of the experiences that inspired the material included in Face for Radio, he said many of his friends at Wynberg Boys High didn’t know what a “huis winkeltjie” was
and so he would share with boys who lived in more affluent
areas, stories about life in Retreat.
And there’s more of this in the show.
When asked who his role models were he said: “My parents. My mom is a teacher and my dad, a retired electrician. You only realise how much your parents do for you, when you are an adult. They sacrificed for me. They are my biggest supporters. When I do shows they chat to my fellow comedians and I have to caution them: ‘Hey, I appreciate you, but I am working here’,” he joked.
In addition to performing on stage, Dalin, is currently the Good Hope FM Sports Presenter.
His plans for the future, include working on being a better performer. “I am always challenging myself. I do shows including all age groups. I enjoy that.”
And, he said: “Maybe (I’ll) travel internationally.”
Visit www.dalinoliver.com for more information or email firstname.lastname@example.org