Nyam! was comically delicious

By Canute Lawrence

Blakka Ellis and Rhoma Spencer

Nyam! headlining Jamaica’s Owen Ellis, aka Blakka Ellis, was a belly-full of food and gut laughter last Saturday evening in Scarborough. Billed as a Caribbean Dinner & Comedy Show, Nyam! featured a number of Caribbean comedians like Jay Martin, enoje OzJam, and Crystal Ferrier; the latter who was born in India, then married to a Jamaican after falling in love with the Jamaican culture.

The show started around 9 PM because Spade Bar and Lounge had a full house, and host Rhoma Akosua Spencer did not want to start the comedy segment until every guest was served their food and was seated. The food, consisting of vegetable fried rice, fried fish, fried plantains, fried chicken, jerked chicken, festival,  shrimps, and steamed vegetables, was certainly tantalizing. There was also beef soup. The food really nyam good!

To start off the show, Rhoma did a fine job revving up the audience doing a roll-call of the Caribbean islands represented, resulting in Jamaica, and Trinidad and Tobago having the loudest responses. During the first segment of the show, Rhoma enthusiastically introduced Jay, enoje, then Crystal, each of whom did a fine job of entertaining the audience before arriving at the 15-minute intermission.

After the intermission, it was time for the main act, Blakka Ellis, whose entrance unto the stage was met with enthusiastic shouts and applause (mi feel good yussi!). Blakka was a whole bundle of energy that took the audience on a rollercoaster ride of laughter while they ‘nyamed’ every bit of what the expert storyteller dished out. In a nutshell, Owen ‘Blakka’ Ellis shell dung di place! One patron was so smitten by him, she requested if the comedian could do one of his poems, “Gateman”, which he graciously performed.

Nyam! was comically delicious, and it would be even better if we could have more offerings like this in Canada showcasing stand-up comics and comedians from across the Caribbean and the Diaspora. Instead of waiting to be invited to other comedy events, we should create our own until it becomes so big that others want to be invited to it. Let’s not wait to eat a likkle food; mek wi nyam big nuh!