'Get on stage and do your stuff, my cousins'
Stand-up comedy veteran Barry Hilton was named this year's Lifetime Achiever at yesterday's announcement of the nominees for the third Comic's Choice Awards.
And for a few seconds after he tearfully accepted his gong from previous recipient Joe Parker, it all looked staged and perhaps part of a skit. It wasn't.
"I was crying and I'm not ashamed to say it," a more composed Hilton said later.
"I've worked very hard to get here. It blows me out of the water. I've worked so hard to get recognition in South Africa, by my peers.
"I've been asked to headline The Improv at Harrah's in Las Vegas in September. That means nothing compared to this. This is the real headline," he said, kissing his statuette.
Reminiscing about career highlights, he mentioned opening for Scottish comedian, musician and actor Billy Connolly during his younger days.
He still gets nervous ahead of his gigs.
"To okes out there aspiring to do this, you've got to be prepared to get knocked down, because you will be. But you are going to get so high. It's the best thing in the world. Get on stage and do your stuff, my cousins."
The third Comic's Choice Awards will be handed out on August 24. The nominees are:
The Savanna Newcomer Award: Loyiso Madinga, Eureka Nkese, Schalk Bezuidenhout and Kagiso Mokgadi.
The Blackberry Breakthrough Act Award: Deep Fried Man, Mpho Popss Modikoane, Jason Goliath and Donovan Goliath.
The Times Comic's Pen Award: Chester Missing, Kagiso Lediga, Rob van Vuuren and Loyiso Gola.
The Comic of the Year: Trevor Noah, Riaad Moosa, Tumi Morake and Loyiso Gola.