Watch our live stream of the NSW Seniors Festival Comedy Debate!

Host: Mikey Robins
Affirmative Team: Vince Sorrenti,  Joel Ozborn, Debora Krizak
Opposition Team: Mary Coustas, Jean Kittson, Darren Carr 

Last week’s NSW Seniors Festival offered hundreds of free events for over-60s throughout the state. As usual, one of the festival’s biggest highlights was the Comedy Debate at Sydney Town Hall, where some of Australia’s favourite performers argue a topic important to over-60s. “Is age just a number?”

For those who couldn’t make it, the Starts at 60 team was there to live stream the event to thousands of over-60s around the country. You can now watch the broadcast in its entirety above. Grab a cuppa, sit back and enjoy 80 minutes of fun – it’s well worth your time!

Backstage: Mary Coustas and Jean Kittson share a personal message with the Starts at 60 community:

For all the laughs and light entertainment, the event took some very sweet and poignant turns. Every speaker approaching the subject with a genuine passion.

Jean Kittson delivered a hugely energetic argument for the positive side of ageing. “I love being a number,” she said.

“I’m 61 and a half, and do you know what that means? It means I’ve had 61 and a half years of experience… It also means I grew up in the 60s and 70s. Other numbers that are not just numbers – they mean something.”

Ventriloquist Darren Carr delivered the biggest crowd-pleaser of the debate: his 89-year-old dummy Arthur, who was full of one-liners about the ups and downs of octogenarian life. 

“You can live to be 100 years old,” said Arthur. “All you have to do is give up all the things that made you want to live to be 100 years old.”

Backstage: Comedian Vince Sorrenti shares his thoughts on ageing:

Comedy legend Mary Coustas presented her speech in-character as Effie, who – despite her trademark mangling of the English language – delivered some of the most surprisingly well-articulated points of all. Age was not just a number, she argued, but a badge of honour.

“I am a number and I’ve earned that number,” said Effie. “And that number comes from experience, contentment, independence and more benefits than any less-ripened people would ever know.”

“Legends don’t cave to shame. Legends don’t fear a number. Legends come out of closets and they inspire others to do the same. I am a legend. And it takes one to know one.

“Yous is legends toos.”

Does your age matter to you? Is it really just a number, or does it mean something more to you? Share your thoughts in the comments below!