One-night-only giggle fest for a good cause Short & Girly is back for a third time in 2011, with a roll-call of Australia’s finest and funniest lady comics donating their time and talent to support the Victorian AIDS Council.

The gala will feature a line-up of high profile female comedians: Denise Scott, Fiona O’Loughlin, Geraldine Quinn, Kate McLennan, Geraldine Hickey, Rachel Berger, Cal Wilson and Zara Swindells-Grose plus surprise guests. The whole thing is being MC’d by the hostess with (some say) dimples to die for, Julia Zemiro.
 
Zemiro is certainly no stranger to anyone having hosted RocKwiz since 2005 but did you know that she graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts in 1993 after her mother urged her to join a dramatic society? She was studying towards a Bachelor of Arts Degree in French and English and hating her first year when this rather savvy suggestion was aired. "If I had three hours between classes I’d go home and come back again, I hated it so much," Zemiro says about that first year.
 
A self confessed late bloomer, Zemiro has not looked back since joining that dramatic society. She has done everything from touring with Bell Shakespeare Company, to appearances at the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, to commentator on the Eurovision Song Contest in 2009. Many may believe that Zemiro’s life is music given her status on RocKwiz but not so:
 
"It’s not music that set me free, it was theatre," she says. "I’d found a group of people who accepted me for what I was. You didn’t have to worry about what you wore every day, no one judged you. I was so happy. I was eating less, I lost weight, I wasn’t bored. Theatre’s what made me come alive."
 
It was a young Andrew Denton who  talent-spotted her at Belvoir Street’s Theatre Sports and drafted her into The Money or The Gun, which in turn got her an equity card. "You know when you just go, I’ve found my group, I’ve found my people. If that moment hadn’t come, I don’t know where I’d be."
 
Talking about the RocKwiz gig Zamiro acknowledges that perhaps her musical knowledge could have been better: "People say, with RocKwiz you must have a lot of musical knowledge. When I got the gig I remember feeling like a bit of a fraud. I hadn’t been going to live music, you don’t sit down and listen to CDs like you do when you’re a young person. And you don’t know adults who do." But it is not her musical knowledge that keeps things moving anyway – it is her ability to make the guests feel relaxed and to keep things flowing – in short, to be the hostess. And, as it happens, Zemiro is very good at that.
 
Whether it is the acting training that has given her a solid foundation in performance art or whether she is a natural talent in the ‘joke fest’ area, Zemiro and her buddies will guarantee a huge night of tickled funny bones, a floor littered with laughed-off socks and the blood and gore that happens when sides are split in two.
 
Short & Girly is a fundraising event for the Victorian AIDS Council who work tirelessly to reduce the transmission of HIV in our community and to preserve the independence, dignity and health of people living with HIV/AIDS. This fundraiser will help them continue to provide these crucial services.
 
Date and Time: Saturday 12 February, 7.30pm Venue: National Theatre, 20 Carlisle Street (Corner Barkley Street), St Kilda Tickets: Full $55, Students/Conc. $45, Group 8 + $50
Bookings: www.ticketek.com or 1300 795 012

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