Paul Williams: Santa Fe

The jig is up! Paul Williams is a quadruple threat – song, dance, comedy and opinion. The self proclaimed “most opinionated comedian in New Zealand” does it all in his show Santa Fe.

Brimming with that classic laid back Kiwi charm

Brimming with that classic laid back Kiwi charm, Williams is able to let us into his mind and transport us to the Wild West. 1882 Santa Fe to be exact, complete with cowboy hats, tumble weed, shoot-outs and a love story fit for a cheesy John Wayne western.

What starts off as a standard comedy show really starts to pop off when Williams storms backstage to have a sibling inferiority-fuelled existential crisis. The show goes off on a strange tangent, turning into a search for the perfect heckle comeback. It’s no longer about setups and punchlines, instead it diverges to inner monologues, time travel and arguing with shadowy depictions of more successful brothers. But the gunslinger slips out from under his brother’s shadow before our eyes, using a projector and clicker as his main weapon.

Though it sounds confusing and perhaps too much for an audience to follow, on stage, it really isn’t. Williams is supremely talented in dragging the audience along for a meta-cognitive ride without any of the irony being lost on them. He deftly combines several elements from different disciplines and mediums without missing a beat.

The only thing that lets the performance down (and perhaps it’s part of Williams’ schtick), is that he seemed a bit restless to start. The performance takes a little bit too long to settle and feels a bit scattered. In saying that, the way the show comes together is hugely impressive and it’s one that will keep you smiling throughout the day.

With Santa Fe, Paul Williams has established himself as one to watch out for, especially if you’re his older brother.

Reviews by Jim Ralley

Gilded Balloon Teviot


Underbelly, Cowgate

Paul Williams: Santa Fe

Underbelly, Bristo Square

Stuart Bowden: Our Molecules

Heroes @ Bob's BlundaBus

Robin Clyfan: The Sea Is Big Enough to Take It

C venues – C royale

A Hero of Our Time


Since you’re here…

… we have a small favour to ask. We don't want your money to support a hack's bar bill at Abattoir, but if you have a pound or two spare, we really encourage you to support a good cause. If this review has either helped you discover a gem or avoid a turkey, consider doing some good that will really make a difference.

You can donate to the charity of your choice, but if you're looking for inspiration, there are three charities we really like.

Mama Biashara
Kate Copstick’s charity, Mama Biashara, works with the poorest and most marginalised people in Kenya. They give grants to set up small, sustainable businesses that bring financial independence and security. That five quid you spend on a large glass of House White? They can save someone’s life with that. And the money for a pair of Air Jordans? Will take four women and their fifteen children away from a man who is raping them and into a new life with a moneymaking business for Mum and happiness for the kids.
Donate to Mama Biashara now

Theatre MAD
The Make A Difference Trust fights HIV & AIDS one stage at a time. Their UK and International grant-making strategy is based on five criteria that raise awareness, educate, and provide care and support for the most vulnerable in society. A host of fundraising events, including Bucket Collections, Late Night Cabarets, West End Eurovision, West End Bares and A West End Christmas continue to raise funds for projects both in the UK and Sub-Saharan Africa.
Donate to Theatre MAD now

Acting For Others
Acting for Others provides financial and emotional support to all theatre workers in times of need through the 14 member charities. During the COVID-19 crisis Acting for Others have raised over £600,000 to support theatre workers affected by the pandemic.
Donate to Acting For Others now



The Blurb

Best Newcomer nominee, Melbourne International Comedy Festival 2018. Cast your mind to a magical place called Santa Fe. Now snap out of it because that's the show's setting and you haven't bought a ticket yet so stop getting free enjoyment. Last year I lost a major comedy award in New Zealand. This year, I'm getting back up on the horse and setting off on the adventure of a lifetime. 'Responsible for one of the greatest songs ever' (David O'Doherty). ‘Beautiful and endlessly endearing' ( ‘Paul is my favourite New Zealand artist' (Lorde). ‘Enviably talented' (Nish Kumar).

Most Popular See More

The Lion King

From £45.00

More Info

Find Tickets

Come From Away

From £25.00

More Info

Find Tickets


From £31.00

More Info

Find Tickets


From £29.00

More Info

Find Tickets

The Play That Goes Wrong

From £24.00

More Info

Find Tickets


From £21.00

More Info

Find Tickets