Published on March 8th, 2024 | by Andrew Bistak

MICF 24: The Isaac Haigh Variety Hour Interview!

The comedian invasion is about to begin in Melbourne again with the Melbourne International Comedy Festival (MICF) and we catch-up with the delightful Isaac Haigh from his new show, The Issac Haigh Variety Hour!

Welcome to Impulse Gamer Isaac!

A pleasure!

So the big question is… are you a time-traveller or were you born ?30 years too late?

I could tell you, but then I’d have to kill you.

Where does your love of the 70’s come from?

I’m a massive fan of The Brady Bunch and the shows of Sid and Marty Krofft (of HR Pufnstuf fame). I also just think that as a society we’ve progressed so much since the 70’s that culturally, a lot of attitudes and ideals that were commonplace back then are just so silly & dorky these days.

Tell us a little about your new show at the MICF – The Isaac Haigh Variety Hour, where did the idea come from and how did you come up with the material?

In the late 70s, after The Brady Bunch got cancelled, the Brady cast were recruited to star on their very own Variety TV show called ‘The Brady Bunch Hour’, produced by the Krofft brothers. If you’re not familiar, I can’t recommend it enough. It’s beyond terrible. And I can’t (and won’t) stop watching it. This show, as well the Krofft brothers’ extended body of work, the Walt Disney Company, and Aussie Variety shows from the 70s like The Graham Kennedy Show and the Don Lane Show are all sources of inspiration for The Isaac Haigh Variety Hour. My co-writer Isabelle Carney and I have loved doing a deep dive into old clips. It’s by far my favourite part of the process when writing parody – research!


If you could choose 3 celebrities from the 70’s to have a beer with, who would it be and why?

  • Barry Williams (plays Greg Brady).
    After his time on the Brady Bunch, Barry went on to have a fabulous musical career on Broadway and beyond. I still keep up with his antics and relate a lot to him as a performer.
  • Donny Osmond. Again, an absolute powerhouse of a performer. He’s still performing today and is about to launch a US tour of his Vegas show. Those that remember his double act with his sister Marie will enjoy a particular set of characters in The Isaac Haigh Variety Hour.
  • Sid Krofft. By all accounts, Sid was the more creative of the two Krofft Brothers. He has a crazy imagination and I’d love to know where all his bonkers ideas came from.

Compared to other MICF shows, you sound like a blockbuster with costumes, choreography and puppets! How is this all achievable?

That’s the goal! I’ve got such a fantastic team working on this show with me. Honestly, the show couldn’t be called anything worse. It should be called “The Isaac Haigh is Very Lucky to Have Such Talented and Supportive Friends Variety Hour”. But that wouldn’t fit on the poster. We’ve all been working super hard to make this show come to life. Including myself, there’s a total of eight people at the theatre helping the show run smoothly every night. But if were to include all the people that have worked behind the scenes to bring this to life, we’d be talking twenty to twenty five at least. It truly takes a village, and I think the fruits of this collaboration definitely show in the final product! Come along to decide for yourself.

Without spoiling the The Isaac Haigh Variety Hour, what can guests expect and should they avoid the front seat?

The show is designed to fully immerse the audience in a 70s Aussie television studio soundstage. The show begins the moment you walk through the door, whether you’re fully aware of it or not. Every show is filmed live, and you can watch the TV screens to see what the episode looks like for the ‘viewers’ at home -complete with authentic 70s era advertisement breaks. My amazing director Caitlin Soennichsen and I have worked hard to ensure that this experience will be like no other at this year’s Melbourne Comedy Festival. And best of all, there’s no audience participation, so the front seat is one of the best seats in the house!

Where do the special guests come from?

We’re super lucky to have a roster of talented, funny, weird-as-hell character comedians and musicians from Melbourne and beyond. Each show is a lucky dip!

Lastly, what are you most looking forward to bringing this show to Melbourne?

It’s such a weird and wonderful world that we’re spoofing. My main wish for the show is that audiences get the same feeling out of it that I’ve been getting while watching the source material. If you were alive in the 70s, I hope it evokes a very particular type of nostalgia. If you weren’t, I hope you enjoy the show for it’s unbridled silliness and absurdity.

For more information or to buy tickets to see Isaac, check out


About the Author

When he's not trying to save the world, Andrew enjoys travel (although loathes turbulence), going to the movies, reading and being a dad to his two dogs (and now twins) with his wife.

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