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Laughing it up on the slopes

Snow is a laughing matter at the Arosa Humor Festival

(Keystone)

This year's "Arosa Humor Festival" begins on Friday and more than two dozen comedy acts from around the world will perform their unique brands of humour on the slopes of the Graubünden resort.

Mime acts from across Europe and North America will be well represented in Arosa from December 8 to 17, proving that comedy can bring down cultural barriers.

Among them is Tomas Kubinek, a Czech-Canadian, who calls himself a "Certified Lunatic Master". Winner of the top prize at Arosa last year, Kubinek can balance a toothbrush on his forehead and is the world champion in catching flies.

The troupe Yllana performs its own version of madness. Even though the troupe is Spanish, Yllana's black humour is very British. Yllana isn't afraid to poke fun at taboo subjects like amok killings, rape or the death penalty.

The Anglo-French duo, BP Zoom, offers a more surreal approach to comedy. Watching their act has been likened to taking part in a Fellini film.

The members of the Russian group, Mikos, honed their skills at a Moscow school for clowns. They are considered masters of interplay and, true to their training, can bring an audience to tears or laughter.

All of the performances take place either at the Arosa Casino in or in a circus tent set up on the slopes.

Yllana will take the stage on opening night as the "Late Night Special" act at 11 pm. Mikos and BP Zoom will perform on December 11 and Kubinek on December 16.

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