Comedian Kicks Breastfeeding Mom Out Of His Show Because Her Baby Was Making Noises

The comedian very publicly told the mother and child to leave.

mom holding smiling baby Ground Picture / Shutterstock

Babies are a part of life. Even if you think they’re inconvenient or hard to deal with, it only makes sense that parents will bring their babies out into the world at some point. One comedian was not ready to accept this fact at a show he did in Melbourne, Australia.

However, his reaction to having a baby at his comedy show also opens up a bigger debate about where it's appropriate to take babies.


A comedian removed a breastfeeding mother and her baby from his show because the child was making noises.

Arj Barker, an American comedian, was doing a show in Australia when he unwittingly became embroiled in controversy. According to HuffPost, Barker “was on stage at the Athenaeum Theatre in Melbourne on Saturday night as part of the city’s international comedy festival when he asked a breastfeeding audience member to leave because her baby was routinely making noises during his set.”

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Trish Faranda, a new mom of a seven-month-old named Clara, was interviewed by 3AW Melbourne, a radio station. Faranda said she had attended multiple Barker shows before and wanted to get back to doing something she loved before having a baby.

She assumed the “generally happy” Clara wouldn’t pose any problems at the show.

“So, I was sitting there, and she gurgled a bit. It was probably the equivalent if someone was coughing,” Faranda shared with 3AW Melbourne.

Initially, Barker cracked some jokes about babies and the noises they make. But, eventually, he got fed up.

I was actually breastfeeding when he came and stood in front of me, and then he was basically telling me to leave,” Faranda explained. About a dozen people left with her in protest of Barker’s behavior.

@thetodayshow Comedian #ArjBarker is responding to intense backlash after telling a mother and baby to leave his show in #Melbourne #comedy #backlash #9Today ♬ original sound - The Today Show

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Faranda later spoke with The Project, an Australian television show, about the ordeal.

“Clara is 100% breastfed,” Faranda told The Project, explaining the necessity of her baby being with her. “There’s really no other way she can eat unless she’s with me.”


“You know, I was prepared to leave if I felt like she was impacting on other people. It was more, like, how it went down, if you know what I mean,” Faranda said, referring to the public way in which Barker threw her out of the show.

For his part, Barker posted a statement on his Instagram account in which he argued that the show was only for people over the age of 15.

“I want to be very clear that this was a very tough call which I made on behalf of the other 700 or so audience members who deserved to see the show they had paid for, uninterrupted,” he stated.

@10newsfirst Comedian Arj Barker has found himself at the centre of controversy after asking a woman and her infant baby to leave his Melbourne International Comedy Festival show on Saturday night. The mother says the incident left her feeling "humiliated," while Barker asserts theatre staff shouldn't have admitted the child in the first place. #arjbarker #micf #comedyfestival #standupcomedy ♬ original sound- 10 News First Australia

This incident feeds into the conversation about where it’s appropriate for parents to bring their kids — and where they shouldn't.

This is more of an issue than just wondering if a comedian did the wrong or right thing by having a baby removed from his show. It directly relates to the age-old question of just where babies belong.


The BBC reported that comedy agent and producer Tubbs McGuire said, “Don’t bring babies to adult shows unless they know the right bits to cry at.”

However, another comedian, Shaparak Khorsandi, said, “I hear you, but personally, I’m fine with it and say yes when asked if babes in arms are allowed.”

mom kissing baby on the top of the head Anna Shvets / Pexels


Faranda had something to say about the debate as well. “I know that, you know, people can sometimes have negative attitudes to mums being out with their babies, especially if they think it’s not ‘the place’ for a baby to be,” she said. “But, at the same time, mums are so isolated, guys. Like, it’s such an isolating job, you know? And it’s sad that you can’t go out and be in public with your baby amongst other people.”

There are two sides to every story, including this one. While it’s understandable that Barker wanted his show to be child-free, it also makes sense that a mom would want to enjoy a night out.

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Mary-Faith Martinez is a writer for YourTango who covers entertainment, news, and human interest topics.