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Ottawa's Latest and Greatest on Comedy

Comedians raise funds for local mental health initiatives

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Eman-el-Husseini. Still from Episode 105 of No Kidding.Eman-el-Husseini. Still from Episode 105 of No Kidding.

From July 30 to Aug. 2, Cracking-Up the Capital, Ottawa’s bi-annual comedy festival, will be taking over the downtown nightlife. In partnership with the Sparks Street Busker Festival, participating comedians will be providing nightly entertainment at pubs all along Sparks Street, while raising awareness and funds for local mental health initiatives. In the winter of 2004, Cracking-Up the Capital started off as a one-night comedy event to support mental health initiatives in the community, and has since expanded into a multi-day festival, with the inclusion of a summer edition starting... | Continue reading article

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Introducing The Jenn Hayward Show

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Still from The Jenn Hayward Show.Still from The Jenn Hayward Show.

It could be that comedy clubs aren’t really your scene, or perhaps you’re just looking for new comedic venues to explore. Whatever your inclination may be,  The Jenn Hayward Show is worth bringing to your attention. On July 5, local comic Jenn Hayward launched her official YouTube channel,  The Jenn Hayward Show,  a production which she describes as “a way to promote Ottawa culture with a comedic twist.” Hayward began doing stand-up comedy in Ottawa about five years ago. She loves the storytelling aspect of comedy and the way comedy... | Continue reading article

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Filed in: Comedy, General

Greg Houston wants to sell you on Just For Laughs

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Greg Houston performs at Mugshot's TacoMic night. Photo by Dennis Elliot.Greg Houston performs at Mugshot's TacoMic night. Photo by Dennis Elliot.

Post by Greg Houston. So myself – Greg Houston a local comic based out of Ottawa, that performs all over and produces monthly and bi-monthly comedy shows is going to Just For Laughs! … As press. I thought I’d practice by interviewing myself? (with help on questions from Ottawhat? Podcast). I’m checking out the festival to sell it to Ottawaeans, and I’m going to sell Ottawa to JFL. JFL has been around since the 80s and is an internationally recognized Comedy festival that brings industry people from all over the... | Continue reading article

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Modern Cabaret Revival with Small Stages Canada

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Image from the NAC websiteImage from the NAC website

Twinkling lights adorned the small stage area, designating the space a dance zone, as 2-person tables in the audience quickly filled up with 3 and 4 people, and attendees dutifully waited in line for their coveted drink tickets. As more and more people filed in and the excited murmurs grew louder, I scanned the room for clues as to what the night had in store. I spotted my fiancé patiently shuffling forward as he drew closer and closer to the head of the drink line. “He has no idea what... | Continue reading article

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A weekday guide to Ottawa

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All photos by Steffani RuesgaAll photos by Steffani Ruesga

We work for the weekend: every day is a countdown until Friday. Once Friday rolls around, the weekend zooms by in a flash. Suddenly we’re back to Monday facing another week of work, and the whole dreary cycle repeats itself. But life doesn’t have to be this way. Luckily, Ottawa has dealt us some pretty entertaining weeknights. So cheer up, Monday doesn’t have to be the worst day of the week. First things first. You’re done work so head over to The Standard on Elgin. They have amazing deals all week... | Continue reading article

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Avenue Q teaches harsh life lessons via puppetry

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All photos by Kenneth Ingram.All photos by Kenneth Ingram.

The award-winning musical Avenue Q will return to Ottawa June 17-20 thanks to Toto Too Theatre Company. The director, Michael Gareau, reveals that the show will deliver a Canadianized performance (with the help of 11 cast members and 32 puppets), promising to be hilariously entertaining, potentially offensive but relevant to the harsher realities of life – particularly adolescence. “It takes the lessons that Sesame Street taught children and it raises them ever-so-slightly so that they can be aimed at adults,” Gareau explains, calling attention to many parallels with Avenue Q’s... | Continue reading article

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Theatre Review: Young Drunk Punk

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Image from the Magnetic North Theatre Festival webpage.Image from the Magnetic North Theatre Festival webpage.

When a comedian kicks things off by semi-bragging about bad reviews for the show you’re about to see you take it to mean “screw that guy, you folks are gonna love this!”  Which of course is exactly what Bruce McCulloch meant when he quoted a recently earned negative review of Young Drunk Punk his one(ish) man show which opened at the NAC last night. Sadly the reviews he quoted were not far off. Inspired by his own life, Young Drunk Punk recalls McCulloch’s journey from a teenaged “punk” growing up... | Continue reading article

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Comedy Explodes in Ottawa this Weekend

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Chris Locke, and his cat Bernadette, from the Comedy Explosion Facebook pageChris Locke, and his cat Bernadette, from the Comedy Explosion Facebook page

If you’ve ever found yourself walking about this city and thinking something the lines of, “I’m simply not laughing anymore,” you might be in for a surprise treat this weekend. Why? Because this weekend will see a veritable explosion of stand-up comedy in the form of Comedy Explosion, a pre-Ottawa Explosion explosion of comedy! Featuring the Toronto-based headliners Mark Little and Chris Locke, and showcasing some of the best of Ottawa’s local comedy scene, the festival will run this Friday and Saturday at the Gladstone Theatre with ticket prices at... | Continue reading article

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Magnetic North Festival: From brilliant street theatre to great stage shows

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Fiamma! An Operascape
Image: Courtesy of Mercury Opera (Edmonton)Fiamma! An Operascape Image: Courtesy of Mercury Opera (Edmonton)

For more than 10 years, the Ottawa-based Magnetic North Theatre Festival has brought great performances to audiences in the National Capital Region, as well as communities across the country. What makes Magnetic North unique from other theatre festivals in Canada, however, is its special mandate to travel across our vast land.  While the festival takes place in Ottawa every second year (including 2015), in other years it occurs in other communities. Since first launching in 2003, the festival has gone to Edmonton(2004), St. Johns (2006), Vancouver(2008), Kitchener-Waterloo(2010), Calgary(2012) and Halifax (2014).... | Continue reading article

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Q&A with Kid in the Hall, Mark McKinney

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The Kids in the Hall. Photo by David Hawe, courtesy of The National Arts Centre.The Kids in the Hall. Photo by David Hawe, courtesy of The National Arts Centre.

Comedy fans in Ottawa will soon have a chance to revisit a nineties classic. The sketch comedy show Kids in the Hall was renowned for bringing absurdist humour and unrepentant Can-Con to the world. The Kids in the Hall will be bringing their live show to the NAC on May 24th. Apt613 spoke with Mark McKinney, who you may know better as the Chicken Lady, about life on tour, growing up in Ottawa, and his new show, Superstore, which will be airing on NBC. Apt613: How has the tour been... | Continue reading article

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