Christians worldwide observe the resurrection of Christ with profound jubilation, veneration, and solemnity, steadfast in their conviction that Christ died and was resurrected to save mankind from their sins. Usually, the occasion is marked by several activities in Ghana, especially in Kwahu in the Eastern Region, which is hallmarked for its annual elaborate celebrations to commemorate the death and resurrection of Christ.

Kumasi did not miss out this year. The much-anticipated standup comedy “Just Getting Started” by Dan Lartey was held at the Royal Cockpit Hotel. The show indeed resurrected the innate desire of Dan Lartey, who announced that he would no longer be known professionally as Dan Lartey. He was just getting started with his native name, Kwasi Mensah, in professional comedy.

Sadly, comedy shows are not typically a source of entertainment in Kumasi, although they may be in Accra. Rarely have comedy shows garnered complete audience interest and support in Ghana. In the 1970s through the 1990s, Ghanaian comedians would open for Local Guitar Bands. Bod Okala, Santo, and Nkomode, among others, were well-liked comedians in numerous bands. 

Nigerians have somehow successfully institutionalised comedy as an integral component of their entertainment sector. South Africa is home to many internationally renowned stand-up performers, including Trevor Noah. Ghana continues to face challenges in establishing comedy as a recognised social event en par with musical concerts and sports.

Thankfully, standup comedy is gradually gaining roots in Ghana’s entertainment circle. One of the “getting started” spectators, Akoto Mansah, conceded that it was her first time attending a comedy show, as she never thought it could be so entertaining.

On the night Dan Lartey narrated that while growing up, he noticed that comedy was in his blood, but the notion was stifled by his parents, especially his father, who was a head teacher at the local school. Despite the advice of both parents to disregard his ambitions of becoming a professional comedian, fate led him to perform his inaugural standup comedy at the Royal Cockpit Hotel on the resurrection day of Christ. Perhaps the intention was for him to resurrect from the deceased Dan Lartey the living Kwasi Mensah.  

Kwasi Mensah touched on several key subjects, including his life experience in the village, missed opportunities, struggles, and achievements. He delivered a glorious tribute to his father, who, despite all the challenges in the village, gave him the best education. On stage, he was admired for his spontaneous, witty jokes, which gave away some people in the crowd.

Kwasi Mensah received appreciable support from his comedy fraternity friends, OB Amponsah, Pulpit, Putago, the electrifying dancer Tatiana, and Kwame Adinkra as they opened the show with their performances. Kofi De Aqua and Afia Barcelona served as the hosts of the event, infusing the evening with additional comedic elements. The show was also attended by some prominent figures in Kumasi and Accra, notably Kofi Nti Hammer, Nana Kwame Adjei Bohyen, Hon. Michael Donkor (DCE, Amansie Central), Dr. Fiifi Okyere, Police Commanders, and people from all walks of life. 

After almost an hour of cracking jokes and personal stories, Kwasi received a prolonged standing ovation while interacting amicably with the patrons and the organisers. The profound satisfaction on their faces was evident; “we want more…we want more…we want more.

Nonetheless, Dan Lartey declared that his standup comedy is here to stay, and we can anticipate his upcoming performance before the year concludes. Perhaps this will be the first edition under the moniker Kwasi Mensah. 

Certainly, Dan Lartey is still Kwasi Mensah.

Source: Kwame Adinkrah

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  1. Comedy enthusiasts are yet to see the best out of this guy Dan Lartey, no wonder he was given a standing ovation, he’s is multi talented and can standout in every position is fixed into.

  2. You’re more than a hero to the people of Amansie and the Ashanti’s at large. I’ve not met you in person but all the time you encourage me with your jokes and at times the controversial stuff you do with the legend Adinkra. I secretly like your personality

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