Story by Rod Charles
Vacay.ca Deputy Editor
The 32nd edition of the Just For Laughs Festival kicked off this week in Montreal. The 2014 edition of the festival features a lineup that includes Don Rickles, Seth Rogen, Andy Samberg, Aziz Ansari, Russell Peters, Amy Schumer, Jim Gaffigan and Chevy Chase.
Canadian favourite Angelo Tsarouchas, who will be taking part in the Ethnic Show July 17-20 and 22-23, is thrilled to be performing in his hometown. He says Montreal is the perfect city to hold this iconic festival.
“I love Just for Laughs, I just love it. It’s the whole world of comedy in one place,” said Tsarouchas. “Ironically, the one place in the world that wants to get rid of English is the place that hosts the largest English comedy festival in the world. Just for Laughs is a comedy festival for all seasons for all people, it really is.”
Here are just a few great reasons to check out Just For Laughs this year (besides Tsarouchas):
The All Star Show
Dates: July 16, 17, 18, 19, 24, 26
Hosted by Dom Irrera, whose stand-up material was honed in a multi-generational Italian household in South Philadelphia. Come to Montreal and let him make you a part of his family for a few gut-busting hours. Irrera is a seasoned veteran of several festivals, including Just For Laughs and Cat Laughs in Ireland. He also has appeared at the Melbourne Comedy Festival in Australia and at Edinburgh Festival’s Assembly Hall in Scotland.
The Nasty Show
Dates: July 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 24, 25
Buckle up — this show will not be afraid to push the limits, which is probably a good thing because Bobby Slayton is hosting. Slayton has appeared in several films and television shows, including “Get Shorty”, “Ed Wood”, “Bandits”, “Dreamgirls”, “The Tonight Show” and “Politically Incorrect”. This show features Ari Shaffir, Derek Seguin, Hailey Boyle, Kurt Metzger and Nick DiPaolo. It’s called The Nasty Show for a reason, so be warned.
Dates: July 25
If this festival had a yearbook, Jim Jefferies would show up under “Most Likely to be Assaulted by an Audience Member” … which was indeed the case during a show in Manchester. Word of advice — if you don’t like salty language, find another show. Jefferies isn’t known for his clean vocabulary, but that doesn’t mean he’s not funny.
Date Night: The Relationship Show
Dates: July 16, 17, 18, 19, 25, 26
Hosted by Godfrey, who may or may not know a thing or two about relationships. This is your chance to find out. Godfrey has appeared in Zoolander and 30 Rock. This show features Lynne Koplitz, John Heffron and Joe Matarese, three funny yet relationship-challenged comedians.
Don Rickles Gala
Dates: July 23, 25
A unique gala format where Don Rickles is performing a headline set as opposed to simply hosting. Rickles is a legend who has received the Friars Club’s Lifetime Achievement Award for Comedy and been honoured with performances by industry friends like Lewis Black, Louis C.K. and Natalie Cole. This gala also stars Alonzo Bodden and Tom Papa.
Dates: July 22, 23, 24, 25, 26
Thank God For Jokes is the rallying cry of comedian Mike Birbiglia, who is bringing his new one-man show to Montreal. A gifted storyteller, Birbiglia will air out all his embarrassing laundry so that you can learn how jokes have saved (ruined?) his life.
Dates: July 23, 24
The King of the Rant is in Montreal to let you know exactly where he stands on all the important issues. The Daily Show pundit is bringing his entertaining angry act to Just for Laughs and when it’s over we are sure that you’ll agree that he’s right. Black has appeared on Larry King Live, Piers Morgan Tonight, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and The Late Show with David Letterman.
- Just For Laughs presents Seth Rogen’s Hilarity For Charity, with part of the proceeds going towards a fund in support of the National Alzheimer’s Association. Event takes place July 26.
- Parks and Recreation star Aziz Ansari brings his Modern Romance tour to Theatre Maisonneuve for two special, swagged-out evenings on July 16-17.
- Noel Fielding unites the Commonwealth’s funniest people at L’Astral for The Brit-ish Show for five nights of delightfully deadpan humour from July 22-26.
- On July 25-26, Whitney star Chris D’Elia’s promises to have the crowds buckled over in laughter.
MORE ABOUT JUST FOR LAUGHS COMEDY FESTIVAL
Tickets: Individual tickets and packages available include:
- Just For Laughs Passport $99
- One Night Stand $130
- Comedy Overload Passport $175
- Two Day Getaway $325
Box Office Phone and email: 1-514-845-2322, 1-888-244-3155 or email them at firstname.lastname@example.org
Hours: Sunday- Saturday, 9 am – midnight