Ovation SA presents John Vlismas. He continues to reinvent himself as the SA comedy landscape evolves. His staying power was especially evident at the Just For Laughs Festival, Montreal recently – where he was selected to appear in a television special at the invitation of Comedy Central, which earned him a meeting with Warner Brothers execs.
Vlismas was awarded an MBA scholarship at Henley Business School in 2017, and is in the process of completing this degree. His involvement at the prestigious school has seen him appointed as an associate faculty member and co-designing and facilitating course material with Dr Puleng Makhoalibe, John was also invited to speak at the Henley Global Masterclass Series in Lagos in 2018 with the Deans of Henley Africa and Global.
The award-winning comedian still uses his public appearances to push the boundaries and broach taboo subjects. His ability to synthesize complex teaching material with crisp presentations and humour has been rewarded with excellent feedback from executives who have attended his Henley sessions.
John Vlismas‘s insightful presentation on the ability of performers to size up a crowd and move them using a heightened sense of empathy, “The Shared World” has earned rave reviews from the increasing number of companies that have hired him to present during their leadership and strategy sessions.
John was invited to speak at a Nedbank Biz Seminar on the topic of entrepreneurship in the creative industry and was the only local speaker at the prestigious DSTV Creative Seminar at the 2014 Loeries.
Vlismas is described by those who attend his talks and learning sessions as a gifted disruptive thinker who is able to articulate complex concepts in a way that is accessible and enlightening.
John has written, directed, lectured, acted and MC’d in all kinds of venues from seedy bars to the Royal Albert Hall. He’s odd, he’s mad, he’s sharper than you and he’s the guy that gets the guy who booked him a promotion.
As a Drama student, John won acclaim for his writing, first representing South Africa at the African regional finals of the Interplay World Fest of Young Playwrights in Nairobi and later represented Africa at the World Final in Townsville, Aus.
After two decades of groundbreaking work as a stand-up comic, John Vlismas returned to his roots as an ardent fan of theatre production. He began a production house to fulfill the needs of his talent management company’s stable.
In five years, his work has grown from assisting comedians with their solo theatre shows, to massive corporate events, such as the landmark multi-media extravaganza FNBLand conference, The Daily Maverick Gathering and the XON/NEC Summit – all of which John conceptualized and executed with hand-picked teams.
While building his corporate production portfolio, he has continued to produce work for major theatres such as The Lyric, Teatro, Theatre on the Square, The Soweto Theatre and ArtsCape. His own projects include the iconic Comic’s Choice Awards series of shows, including the Newcomer Showcase, The Grilling of a Lifetime and the ever-popular Main Awards Show.
Startling creative work entwined with an intimate knowledge of traditional and current technical solutions combine to give this creative director an edge.
Add to these qualities twenty years of performing to audiences in 8 countries, and this award-winning performer is able to turn a scribble on a napkin into a high definition show-stopper.
John is currently the creative head of his company’s production division, and on an 8-country roadshow for a major financial services provider, providing a platform for optimum cultural exchange between locals and global leadership.