What’s On previews Jeff Dunham and his ventriloquist show in Abu Dhabi on May 1 and 2. Find out how to buy tickets and meet the puppets that are the stars.

If you thought the glory days of ventriloquism ended when Keith Harris and Orville the Duck left our television screens back in 1990, you clearly haven’t been introduced to Jeff Dunham.

The U.S. comedy star has taken audiences by storm with his army of puppets – from grumpy old man Walter, to Jose the talking jalapeno pepper, to his most controversial sidekick, Achmed the Dead Terrorist. Achmed is the puppet behind the catchphrase that spawned a million mobile phone ringtones: “Silence! I Kill you!”

Dunham – who is said to be the top-grossing stand-up act in North America – is bringing his motley crew of characters to Abu Dhabi’s du Forum on May 1 and 2.

To mark the imminent arrival of the comic – credited with reviving ventriloquism with the help of his “politically incorrect” and “gratuitously insulting” puppet friends – in the UAE, we take a look at his success story in numbers.

7 million In DVD sales
0.5billion Hits racked up by his YouTube videos
3 Number of times Dunham has made it on to the annual Forbes list of the world’s most powerful entertainers
6.8million Number of people who tuned into Dunham’s A Very Special Christmas Special on Comedy Central in 2008 – making it the cable channel’s most watched programme ever
2 Number of times Dunham has been named the world’s top-grossing live comedy act by industry magazine Pollstar [2009 and 2010]
7 Number of puppets in Dunham’s entourage
8.3million Facebook likes
417,000 Twitter followers
8,000 Number of seats in the Helsinki hockey stadium Dunham sold out on Easter Sunday
0.5million Dollars in tour ticket sales Dunham has donated to charity 


Jeff Dunham's Bubba J Jeff Dunham's Jalapeno Jeff Dunham's Walter

Jeff Dunham's Peanut

du Forum, Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, May 1 and 2, 7.30pm, from Dhs295. Tel: (02) 5098143. Taxi: du Forum. ticketmaster.ae