Who are wee?

Matthew Kelly and Richard Higgins are The Listies, a Kidult comedy duo who produce LOLS on screen, stage and the page.

Rich and Matt met way back in the dinosaur times (in the early aughties), performing in kids theatre shows by the likes of Andy Griffiths and Roald Dahl in shows like: Just Disgusting, The Day My Bum went Psycho and The Twits. Rich played Mr Twit and Matt played Mrs Twit. (There they are in the photo to the right.) They were directed by a kids theatre genius called Lynne Ellis.

Millions of years passed, ices ages came and went. And then one day they thought they should make a comedy show together and put it in the Melbourne Fringe. Rich wrote a title on his hand and registered them for 5 shows.

Influenced by classic comedy duos like Los Trio Ringbarkus, Lano and Woodley, Morecombe and Wise, Terrance and Phillip, Spongebob and Patrick, Tim and Eric, French and Saunders, they made an absurdist, double act show for adults all about lists. It was called The List Operators.

It won them Melbourne Comedy Festival's coveted Golden Gibbo award for best independent show. They toured it for a year and then in 2009 they made a show for KIDULTS (kids and their adults) called The List Operators for Kids: More Fun than a Wii!. Even though it was a very, very long title it was the first kids show ever to be nominated for the Melbourne Comedy Festival ‘Barry’ (best show) award. Rich and Matt toured Wii for two years. And shortened their name ,in order to be able to fit it on a rubber stamp, becoming The Listies in 2010.

 Matt and Rich performing The List Operators for Kids do Compooters at the Edinburgh Fringe 2011

Matt and Rich performing The List Operators for Kids do Compooters at the Edinburgh Fringe 2011

Nice things people have said about the Listies:

“When I saw The Listies, it affected my thinking because I really related to the comedy craft they were exercising...it got me a little bit excited to realise that when you are performing for kids, it’s just as delicate and just as sophisticated.” - Frank Woodley, The Australian.

"If the Wiggles are the Eagles then the Listies are the Sex Pistols." — Dave O'Neil ,The Age.

"Australian duo the Listies have conquered children’s comedy through deep respect for their audience, with a focus on the subversion of the adult desire for control — with hilarious results." — Sue Giles, The Australian.

"Absolutely delicious!" — A Tiger.

"If your kids have never been to the theatre before, do them a favour and make this their first experience. It's something they will never forget.” — The Scotsman.

"The Listies are a comedy duo who have made a very successful career out of appealing to, well not only the little kid in all of us, but the grubby, grubby little kid in all of us.” — Virginia Trioli, ABC News Breakfast.

"Too silly." — Oscar, 5.

 Rich and Matt also have a very successful ushering career

Rich and Matt also have a very successful ushering career

 Rich and Matt in 2003 at R.M.I.T performing as The Twits by Roald Dahl, directed by Lynne Ellis. They never washed those costumes.

Rich and Matt in 2003 at R.M.I.T performing as The Twits by Roald Dahl, directed by Lynne Ellis. They never washed those costumes.

 The Least silly picture Rich and Matt have ever been in, snapped by Max Milne

The Least silly picture Rich and Matt have ever been in, snapped by Max Milne

 

 

 

Since then Matt and Rich have had enormous fun performing to lovely people all over the world. They've played high-flying, glamorous locations like London, Sydney Opera House, Kuala Lumpur, South Korea, Edinburgh and even Woolongong.

And they made a bunch more shows: The Listies Do Compooters, Earworms, 6D (Twice as Good as 3D), The Listies Make U LOL, The Listies Ruin Xmas, Hamlet Prince of Skidmark (co-created with and directed by Declan Greene) recorded two comedy albums, Drive U Crazy! and Go Bananas and have written two books with Penguin, Ickypedia: A Dictionary of Disgusting New Words, and it's sequel Ickyfoodia: The Ultimate Guide to Disgusting Food in 2017.

Right now they are based in Melbourne Australia but regularly tour all over the shop. They are recording a new album, working on top secret TV projects, and writing a new book. They are thinking of having a fart extractor installed in their secret batcave as Matt has been eating too many lentils...

 The first ever Listies Poster from the dinosaur times.

The first ever Listies Poster from the dinosaur times.

Awards and things:

2016     Nominated Best Children's Show Sydney Critics Award

2016     Won The HarperCollins Best Designed Children’s Fiction Book

2015     Nominated Best Ensemble Green Room Awards

2013     Won Best Production for Children, Sydney Theatre Awards

2010     Nominated Best Show, "The Barry" Melbourne Comedy Festival

2010     Nominated Best Emerging Comedians Adelaide Fringe

2009     Won Golden Gibbo Award, Melbourne International Comedy Festival

2008     Won Melbourne Fringe Best Emerging Producers

 

 

      Reviews of Live Shows

Thought Annie the Musical could have done with a few more poo gags? This is the show for you

★★★★★ Time Out

This manic Australian double act know all the right buttons to push to make children shriek with laughter

The Guardian

Theatre can open a child's eyes to a world of myth, art, music and history. Happily, The List Operators For Kids are having none of that.

★★★★½ The Sydney Morning Herald

The Lano & Woodley of the under-12 set

★★★★★ Herald Sun

Bottom waggling anarchy!

★★★★ The Age

Funny as any comedy show you could hope to see ... The pair work with energy and skill to keep everything under control, whilst maintaining an illusion of free-wheeling madness that kids of all ages will absolutely adore.

★★★★★ Fest Mag (UK)

It would almost be a waste for this gloriously anarchic show to be seen only by children ... I laughed more freely in these 50-odd minutes than at any time in the festival so far.

★★★★ Chortle

This is perfect family entertainment

★★★★★ Three Weeks UK

The names of the actors are Richard and Matt, they are extremely funny and slightly stupid!

Art Kid Archie's blog

The List Operators! The Kings of Laughter They couldn't get any more funny or dafter.

The Big V

It was the best time we've had together for ages because, unlike every other family activity now offered including on the Fringe, it wasn't remotely educational. It didn't try to turn me into a quasi-teacher explaining things to my kids every two seconds in soft mummyish whisperings. We didn't discover how gravity works or beef up on the effects of global warning, not even in an amusing way. I didn't come out with anything new except a face that ached from laughing so much. We had a great afternoon. We learnt absolutely nothing. We just had fun.

Take the Family Blog

If there was a Wikipedia entry about how to write and perform a kid's comedy show, this would be the show to define it. Outstanding

★★★★ Fringereview (UK)

We took all the kids to this show (8,5, 1.5), and they all had an amazing time.

★★★★★ Broadway Baby

Was I "Rolling On the Floor Laughing So Hard I Peed My Pants?" Close!

★★★★ Fringe Guru