Hidden away under the pretext of free nights in small bars around town, the Dubai comedy circle is warmly accessible to audience and performers alike, especially for a charming newbie like Luke Hacker. “I have only ever been a performer in Dubai. I didn’t do this before. There is a scene here and it is welcoming and there are lots of opportunities.”
So how did a freshman comedian mark his way around his corporate lawyer day-job into the small but growing circle of comedy in Dubai? I would say with his tall, dashing British looks, but he is as unaware of it as a 16 year old is of her innocence. With his first gig last July, Luke Hacker paved his way slow and steady doing his next show only last September. Today, nearly 40 gigs later he is a common face on most nights bringing to stage an immense energy lip-synced to a crisp British accent. “A good live event is amazing to be part of. I loved going to watch it back home, especially theatre.” “It’s amazing because it will never happen again, you will never get the same group of people in the same room, ever, again. “
Being a new fish in a new pond means fewer expectations and therefore more ease…more time for Luke to discover his style of comedy, to experiment with material and style. There is no deeper purpose to his comedy besides truly taking part in the art that he loved watching. Being rather Kantian about it; “No one is paying to see me, so I can do what I like and have fun. So lots of experimentation; tell silly stories one day, maybe run around the stage the other day and see what happens. You could bomb, or everyone could burst into laughter. It’s exciting.”
A good live event is amazing to be part of. I loved going to watch it back home, especially theatre. It’s amazing because it will never happen again, you will never get the same group of people in the same room, ever, again.
When I first met him, he was intimidating but maybe it was just his face or his day job. Because in reality, there is no pomposity about Luke Hacker. With a genuine laugh and hints of Alice in Wonderland references, he is far from any stoic first impressions you may have of him. His smile gives him away most of the time bringing to the table a personality warm enough to put you at ease.
Comedy in Dubai essentially sets its tone apart in the same way the city does, it is a mix of nationalities, cultures filling the stage with style and references from all over the globe. “It is Interesting,” says Luke “because there are references here that would probably not work some other place. The guys who run Dubai Laughing, they are doing amazing job like others in the scene, Dubomedy, the Courtyard Playhouse, Yalla Laughs; I did two courses here, one with Dubai Laughing and one with Dubomedy. In both cases, it was a chance to turn up once in a week, hang out with people, do some homework and as a graduation ceremony, do a show.” With a penchant for western classical music like Bach and Jazz, Luke Hacker as a comedian is just like Bach on iTunes. Almost an oxymoron; but not quite.