toronto comedy events

This Week In Comedy: ALTdot Comedy Lounge, John Tole, Ian Stuart, Jackie Kashian, Tequila Comedyworm

From a Girl Scout Cookie Enthusiast (wait 'til you hear this one), to the Lead Ranger of the Dork Forest, allow me to introduce you to our wonderful guests in This Week In Comedy.

MON JAN 14 / ALTdot COMEDY LOUNGE / RIVOLI / 332 QUEEN W / 9PM / $5

ALTdot knocks it out of the park again with a stellar line-up. Pay special attention to Rebecca Kohler, who was thoroughly impressive when she opened for Tom Segura and Brendon Walsh at JFL42. Nick Reynoldson is quickly becoming one of my favourite acts to watch because I don't know what's going to happen when he's up there. Heck, neither does he. Finally, Adam Christie deserves a mention because he's one of the only comedians I've ever seen slowly turn his back to the audience, regard the wall, and somehow keep the crowd with him and laughing all the while.

TUES JAN 15 / JOHN TOLE & IAN STUART / COMEDY BAR / 945 BLOOR W / 8PM & 930PM / $10

John has worked with Jim Norton, Joe Rogan, Ari Shaffir, and Howard Stern, which should give you a good idea about where his head's at. The clip above made me sacrifice an applause break without laughing, which is magical in and of itself. I almost want to quote the punchline to you right now, but I don't want to spoil it. In the same spirit of doing your own thing, Ian Stuart's hard work on the road less travelled is paying off, which is probably why these guys are touring together: there's strength in unity.

THURS JAN 17 / TEQUILA COMEDYWORM / 512 QUEEN W / 830PM / $5

Mark Little headlining? I'm there. I caught some of his new stuff at Rush Zilla's Laughter Luau at Hawaii Bar (every Friday at 9pm standard comedy time), and it was gold. It's intimidating, wonderful, and awe-inspiring all at the same time when I see Mark on stage. But then I remember he's been in the game for over 10 years, has a Masters in Theatre, and is a voracious writer and performer. Many of his fans will congratulate him for being hilarious, but I thank him for the dedication and hard work that he's put in to making it all seem so effortless.

FRI JAN 18 / JACKIE KASHIAN / COMEDY BAR / 945 BLOOR W / 8PM & 930PM / $20

In keeping with my reverence for hard work and dedication, Jackie Kashian has been at it for 15 years and still spends over half of the calendar year touring internationally. Her comedy album It's Never Going To Be Bread was named one of the best by Amazon in 2010. What's most impressive, though, is that her podcast fans have self-identified themselves as, "Rangers of the Dork Forest." Wowzers. When your internationally-dispersed fan base bands together to form a cohesive unit and starts interacting without your supervision, that's when you know you've made it.

About the Author: This is Michael Jagdeo, and I refuse to write about myself in the third-person. My blog, Diary of a Stand-up Comedian, walks you through the up's and down's (they're mostly down's, really) in my quest to become a killer comic in Toronto.


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