You’ll most likely remember Lehmo from SAFM breakfast radio. Nowdays you can catch him on Channel Ten’s Before The Game, Melbourne’s MIX FM, and at this year’s Fringe with his show ‘Lehmo Can’t Say No.’ Cassandra DiNino chatted to him about the Fringe, comedy and breaking world records.
Lehmo has experienced life. He’s worked with some of the country’s top comedians, had various stints on breakfast radio and
interviewed a number of A-list celebrities, but it’s the Adelaide Fringe which conjurs up some of this comedian’s greatest memories.
“In my opinion, and I’m pretty sure thousands of other people’s opinion as well, [the Fringe] is pretty much the best party going on in Australia.”
With his first Fringe experience in 1988 it’s not hard to see where Lehmo’s love of the stage came from. Through shows by Jimeon, Judith Lucy and Mick Molloy, Lehmo became a fan of the comedy scene at an early age, and as he says, “that was the start of my love for stand-up comedy.”
Born and bred in Adelaide, Lehmo left our quaint city for the rush and glamour of Melbourne, where he co-hosts popular AFL program Before The Game and MIX FM’s breakfast radio show. But, he’s set to return, with his show ‘Lehmo Can’t Say No’ at this year’s Fringe. And for those wondering what to expect? Well, the name says it all.
“Oprah calls it the disease to please, but I like to say Lehmo can’t say no.
“This show really is a series of stories where I’ve got myself into situations that could have been easily avoided if I’d just said no in the first place.”
And with stories from performing horrible gigs, getting attacked by an angry mob and buying shares in a company that never existed, it’s not one you’ll want to miss out on.
At the 2008 Lorne Falls Festival, Lehmo describes how he stood on stage for fifteen minutes being pelted with beer cans and listening to abusive chants by festival-goers. While this may seem like any sane persons nightmare, Lehmo has used the experience as a source of comedy for future shows.
“If you wanna feel better about yourself, come see my show,” he laughs.
But it’s not all bad for this Aussie comedian, who’s impressively broken a Guinness World Record, telling five hundred and forty nine jokes in an hour, beating the previous record by a remarkable fifty jokes.
Lehmo’s expertise and talent has also seen him travel to the Middle East where he entertained Australian troops, describing them as hard-working, nice and professional people.
“It was really nice to be able to go over there and perform for them.”
And while this comedian has travelled from the Middle East to New York, it’s Adelaide that he’s now most looking forward to. With the Fringe set to dazzle through its striking line-up of national and international comedy, dance, music, cabaret, theatrical and film acts, Lehmo is urging youngsters to get involved.
“This is a real opportunity to discover something that you wouldn’t normally pay money to see.
“If you haven’t seen live comedy before you are missing out on one of the great, intimate, fun forms of entertainment in the world and there are so many brilliant acts coming to Adelaide.’
‘Lehmo Can’t Say No’ is on from the 19, 20 23-27 February at the Rhino Room.
Student tickets priced at $18. Bargain.
The Adelaide Fringe runs from the 19 Feb-14 March.