Tanya Gyzi brings her comedy show ‘My Big Fat Greek Single Life’ to the Adelaide Fringe

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By Martina Simos.

Comedian Tanya Gyzi, 48, has been single for 15 years and instead of feeling miserable she has created a comedy act for the Adelaide Fringe this month.

Titled My Big Fat Greek Single Life, the show’s material is based on her personal life including growing up in a Greek household with three older siblings.

“It’s my first solo show for the Fringe and I was thinking of names for it,” Tanya tells The Greek Herald.

“I’ve been single since my divorce 15 years ago and I wanted to do something to incorporate being single and being Greek.

“And I loved [the movie] My Big Fat Greek Wedding. I thought a title that’s similar is a way to talk about my Greek background.

“I think I found my niche in Greek comedy, to be honest. It’s an amazing feeling.”

After a career in Information Technology, Tanya changed her direction and began pursuing photography and the visual arts in 2012. She credits her father Anthony, a visual artist and an entrepreneur known for bringing international acts to Australia, for her love of the visual arts.

When she turned 30, Tanya took part in a comedy workshop run by renown South Australian comedian Dave Flannagan, who has since passed away. It has taken her a few years of concentrated practice and watching other comedians to improve her comedy act.

She says Acropolis Now and The Wog Boy are just two shows that have influenced her comedy style.

“I wasn’t that great to start with but over the years I’m at the point where I am the best I’ve been at,” she says.

“I learn from other comedians and other people who have been in the industry. I keep learning as I go.”

The themes of her latest show include Greek sayings such as ‘tha fas xilo – you’ll eat wood,’ why Greeks spit for good luck, superstitions, her close relationship with her mum, her divorce from her Italian husband who accidentally took her Tupperware, feta cheese being taken to court and why she was called Tanya.

There are also some deeply personal issues including her battle with a bi-polar diagnosis and endometriosis – themes that are common across all cultures.

“I make it funny. I wanted my show to be something for everybody even though it has a Greek theme,” she concludes. “I love being Australian and I love being Greek.”

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