The launch was hosted by comedian Blakka Ellis of Ellis International, and he delivered an engaging programme that had the audience laughing on various occasions. Blakka started the night by paying respect to the mothers in recognition of the recently celebrated Mother's Day. He congratulated the mothers of Ity and Fancy Cat who he said raised their sons well, raising them in a volatile community like Trench Town.
He also paid respect to veteran Jamaican comedians like Oliver Samuels, Glen 'Titus' Campbell, Bim and Bam, Ike and Mike, Miss Lou, Tiny and others. "When nobody knew about us, Oliver Samuels gave us a show in 1992, so we honour him," Blakka said about Samuels who was also in attendance. Blakka then made way for Digicel's brand marketing manager Tshani Jaja and she started by commending the comedic duo on their contribution to the development of local comedy. "Digicel is pleased to be a part of this monumental occasion. We want to congratulate them for the vision and the goals they had. Comedy is a big part of our culture and Digicel supports that ... it's good for us to laugh and realise that life is more than just the stress that comes with it," Jaja said.
Representative of Restaurants of Jamaica, Tina Matalon, spoke on behalf of KFC. She said KFC was always involved in the development of Jamaican comedy. "We are not new to comedy, we and Oliver Samuels go way back. We were sponsors of Oliver At Large for nine seasons ... we are committed and proud to be a part of such a good Jamaican product and we saw quality in this show produced by two of Jamaica's top entertainers," she said. According to Matalon, KFC is contributing over 10 million dollars annually to the production of the popular televised comedy show.
"We are confident that our contribution will help to maintain that already high quality you have," she said.
Director of culture in the Ministry of Education, Youth and Culture, Sidney Bartley, also gave an entertaining speech, delivering some jokes of his own before reinforcing the commitment that the Ministry of Culture has for the continued production of the Ity and Fancy Cat show.
"The Ministry of Culture is proud to support Ity and Fancy Cat. It's amazing how it develops an attitude in the viewers that they can take on the world," he said.
Courts, long-time partners of Ity and Fancy Cat, was also present, and they made it known that the company had been working with the duo for 20 years, which makes them a part of the Courts family. Following the comments from the sponsors, senior lecturer at the University of the West Indies, Dr Sonjah St. Niaah, spoke passionately about the importance of government assistance in the development of culture. According to Dr Niaah, culture is one of the largest income generators in Jamaica and the arms of government should consider facilitating cultural training. This comment was greeted with much applause from the audience who seemed to agree with the lecturer. The event concluded with some entertainment from comedians Ice Man and Ity and Fancy Cat who cracked some jokes in regular fashion.
The first episode of season five of the Ity and Fancy Cat show will be aired on Sunday, May 27.