Comedy Toronto

This Week In Comedy: All Black Comedy Special, Sean Pod, Funny Looking, and Launchpad Comedy

What does Buddhism have to do with comedy? A lot, grasshopper. From argumenters to improvisors, follow me as I take you through This Week In Comedy.

SUN MAR 25 / ALL BACK COMEDY SPECIAL / YUK YUK'S / 224 RICHMOND W / 8PM / $20

I love comedians that have a point to make. It takes a very skilled comic to set forth and prove an argument when you're trying to get a laugh every 10-15 seconds. Patrick Haye, your headliner, has the ability to do this (see 2:25 of the above clip). So when he goes on stage, give him some breathing room to craft his premise; the punchlines are worth the wait.

TUES MAR 27 / THE SEAN POD / RIVOLI / 332 QUEEN W / 9PM / $5

The Sean Pod invades the back room of the Rivoli this week, with Mike "Nug" Nahrgang, master of the improv, making an appearance. In my opinion, improvisors don't get nearly as much credit as they deserve. I mean, 'Nug' has the ability to deliver punchline after punchline off the top of his dome...that's amazing. How many people in Canada can do that? Nug's so good that he's won three Canadian Comedy Awards from his sketch work with The Minnesota Wrecking Crew and has even shared the silver screen with Jackie Chan. The clip above features the show's namesake, Sean Cullen, who's no stranger to joking off the top of his dome, either.

THURS MAR 29 / FUNNY LOOKING / LOU DAWG'S BBQ / 589 KING W / 8PM / FREE

You'd think that with 10 stellar comedians on the bill, it'd be hard to focus on just one, but you'd be mistaken. K. Trevor Wilson is a casual comedic genius on stage. He's mastered what many comedians struggle with: vulnerability. I don't mean vulnerable in the unsafe sense, but vulnerable in the sense that the audience has the ability to influence what you say and how you say it. After all, we are without separate existence (Rodney Smith, Stepping Out Of Self-Deception). It's hard to explain...I'll let the clip above show you what I'm talking about.

THURS MAR 29 / LAUNCHPAD COMEDY / WHITE SWAN / 836b DANFORTH / 830PM / FREE

Hey ladies: I know that stand-up comedians aren't often the prettiest performers in the world, but Al Val's an exception. But can he also elicit laughter from even the toughest of audiences? You betcha. Al Val's improv is his strongest suit. Case in point, take a gander at the clip above. A phone rings in the middle of his set, and instead of getting upset, he takes the phone and pretends that he's a girl looking to hook up. That kind of balls and confidence in your improv is what makes Al a consistent hit with even the most discerning palette.

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, documents the trials and tribulations I go through as I try to past the just noticeable difference threshold in Toronto's comedy scene.


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