Rose Matafeo has been named the 2013 Billy T Award winner at the NZ International Comedy Festival's closing event, Last Laughs.
The Billy T Award is described as the most prestigious comedy award, recognising up-and-coming New Zealand comedians with outstanding potential. This year's other nominees were Eli Matthewson, Joseph Moore, Pax and Tom Furniss.
Matafeo was awarded the iconic Yellow Towel, a $3500 cash grant from the New Zealand Comedy Trust, a spot on TV3’s 7 Days, Huffer clothing and an advertising campaign on The Rock FM.
"Winning the Billy T has always been a goal of mine, and I'm stoked to have got it," says Matafeo.
"This year I was nominated with genuinely amazing comedians and was just stoked to be nominated with them. Winning was the icing on the cake."
The Rose Matafeo Variety Hour received critical acclaim this year - read the 3news.co.nz review here. Matafeo herself admits she has improved a lot since her 2012 show.
"I decided to just have fun with the show this year and write jokes that I found funny and which hopefully audiences did too," explains Matafeo.
"Luckily for me, they did! I do think I've improved a lot since last year. I became a lot more confident in my material and my ability, when previously I was pretty excruciatingly self deprecating."
Her comedy is still self-deprecating; including reading segments of negative reviews out onstage. One of them stated "Rose Matafeo is shit at doing impressions".
Ironically, this is an aspect of her performance Matafeo is most happy with.
"My impressions I guess," Matafeo replied when asked what her main joke is.
"My best impression is of a stand up comedian, it's been working for like, six years."
Jarred Christmas was also a winner at Last Laughs, picking up the Fred Award which honours the festival's best show in by a New Zealand comedian.
Urzila Carlson was crowned the inaugural TV3 People’s Choice Award winner, Tim Batt and Sam Smith won Best Newcomer awards, Stuart Goldsmith and Ben Caldwell won Spirit of the Festival awards and Tom Binns as Ian D Montfort was named Best International Show.
Matafeo's winning of the Billy T Award is sure to give her career a boost, although she is playing it down somewhat.
"I guess it means I'll have to do more gigs," she says.
As far as her future goes, she has some big goals.
"I want to write a book, write a movie, have a TV show and go to Disneyland!" exclaimed Matafeo.
Getting to Disneyland should now be very easy for Matafeo to accomplish - as far as those other three goals go, hopefully the Billy T Award proves to be a decent starting point.
source: newshub archive