What: Aunty Donna's Tea Towels for Edinburgh fundraiser
Cost: $30 per tea towel
MARK Samual Bonanno never expected his comedy troupe Aunty Donna would gain international recognition.
Formed at the end of 2011, the group was conceived after its members met at Federation University's (formerly University of Ballarat) Arts Academy.
"We decided to apply for the Melbourne International Comedy Festival, but we applied with nothing. We had no show, no material and no idea what it would be like working together," Bonanno said.
"We put something together in three months and our first show did really well for us. It sold out and was nominated for the festival's Golden Gibbo award.
"That kept us going strong and encouraged us to keep pushing it."
Ever since that first gig, the company has been pushing boundaries, creating hilarious sketches that have even been well-received overseas.
The eight-piece recently received two prestigious invitations to perform its brand of high-energy and hysterically absurd sketch comedy to audiences at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival and SF Sketchfest in San Francisco.
"This is just incredible and it's the fastest anything's ever happened to us," Bonanno said.
"We're really blessed that people have wanted to listen to us. That's always the hardest thing - to get people to care about what you're doing."
Now, in a bid to raise money for its travels overseas, Aunty Donna has launched a fundraising campaign titled Tea Towels for Edinburgh.
For $30, contributors will receive a limited edition tea towel designed by the group's New Zealand fan Joel Spencer.
Bonanno said the response to the campaign from fans had so far been impressive, but there was still a long way to go.
"We've been offered an incredible opportunity to play in two huge overseas festivals and having only been around for just over two years, it's breathtaking to see how many people believe in us and are willing to give us a little bit of money to help out," he said.
"We are still trying to sell more but the fact we've sold any at all is really beautiful."