Matthew Martin is a senior reporter at the Rotorua Daily Post

Funnyman bringing convoy of comedy 'back home'

Comedian Ewen Gilmour knows the way to Rotorua better than most, after all, he was born here.

Gilmour is bringing a mix of top Kiwi and international comedy acts to Rotorua as part of the 2Degrees Comedy Convoy in his role as MC and host.

"When I say I'm in charge, I'm only in charge of the microphone, but it's a great line up, I'm looking forward to seeing them myself," he told the Rotorua Daily Post.

Accompanying him on his whirlwind 12-show tour is American globe-trotter Tom Rhodes, a travel writer for the Huffington Post and an acclaimed stand-up comedian.

Sitting in the passenger seat is Nelson-born Guy Williams, last year's Billy T Award winner and regular on TV3's Jono & Ben at Ten.

They are joined by the 2010 winner of the Fred Award, 7 Days regular and star of TV3's comedy series Golden, Jesse Griffin and British comedian Chris Martin - who is not Gwyneth Paltrow's husband or - even more famously - the former Black Caps fast bowler.

"When there's a whole bunch of dudes sitting in a van together the comedy tends to write itself," Gilmour said.

"Comedians all get on reasonably well, we all have do-nothing jobs really."

Gilmour said he was born in Rotorua Hospital in the same ward as Temuera Morrison and his mother.

"But Tem tells me it was his brother.

"The funny thing is, up until I was five or six, I thought I was part Maori, being born in the homeland of Maori culture.

"I always thought I was a Maori being raised by a pakeha family and I was a little disappointed to figure out I wasn't," he said.

The Comedy Convoy heads to Rotorua's Civic Theatre on Tuesday May 14. Tickets are available from the venue or at For details visit

- Rotorua Daily Post

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