Tez Ilyas: TEZ Talks

Tez talks, and you should listen. Tez Talks is a powerful and poignant piece of topical comedy, boldly exploring what life is like for the average British Muslim. Tez Ilyas is an incredibly intelligent comic, with the ability to truly make his audience think, even as they’re roaring with laughter.

This a very funny, and very intelligent performance.

The show begins with Ilyas congratulating his audience for completing modules one to five of their conversion course to Islam. This talk, he explains, is a bonus module on the course, designed to teach them how to integrate into British society, as newly converted members of the Islamic faith.

To make the whole process easier, Ilyas has come up with the ‘Tez Commandments’; ten steps to follow to help to strike a successful balance between the British nationality and Islamic beliefs. Each of these steps is aptly named, and Ilyas explores each of them in-depth, to humorous and thought-provoking effect. As a testament (get it?) to his comedic ability, Ilyas is hilarious even as he challenges troubling stereotypes, takes on the media, and questions what exactly ‘British Values’ are, and how exactly you’re supposed to demonstrate them day to day.

At the climax of the piece, Ilyas is serious for moment, as his passion for the subject matter, and its importance, is fully and unapologetically realised. His thoughts are communicated clearly, resonating with his audience who feel the full impact of his emotional punch. In this moment, Ilyas is completely raw, stripped of his comic persona and seeking to relate his personal experiences honestly to his audience. It is a powerful moment. But then it ends, and Ilyas is back to comedy, jovially congratulating his newly graduated class of converts, and finishing with a graduation photo complete with party poppers.

Ilyas deals with difficult subject matter in a personable and charismatic manner, which allows his audience to feel entirely at ease as they learn from his message, have any false perceptions corrected, and laugh unrestrainedly at his jokes. This a very funny, and very intelligent performance. 

Reviews by Ailish George

The Bridewell Theatre

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★★★
Southwark Playhouse

Bananaman

★★★★★
Young Vic Theatre

How to Win Against History

★★★★
Gilded Balloon at the Museum

Night at the Museum

★★
Pleasance Courtyard

Iain Stirling: U OK Hun? X

★★★

Performances

Location

The Blurb

The highly anticipated debut show from Leicester Mercury New Comedian of the Year nominee and BBC New Comedy Award finalist. With his sharp wit and charmingly cheeky onstage persona, Tez Ilyas is one of the hottest rising stars on the circuit. Join Tez as he leads you on a truly unique journey through this silly, smart and subversive take on life in his Britain. As heard on BBC Radio 4's The Now Show and star of The Pleasance's Comedy Reserve. 'Sartorially stylish and winningly cheeky' (Chortle.co.uk). 'The hilarious Tez had the crowd in stitches' ***** (WhatsOnStage.com).