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LMAO: Halifax’s comedy scene is small but powerful 

Voice of the City


click to enlarge Originally from Saint John, Chanel Freire moved to Halifax to attend art school in 2004. In 2012, her lifelong love for stand up, alongside her stunning rapport with failure in the arts, led her to the stage. She’s been hooked ever since.
  • Originally from Saint John, Chanel Freire moved to Halifax to attend art school in 2004. In 2012, her lifelong love for stand up, alongside her stunning rapport with failure in the arts, led her to the stage. She’s been hooked ever since.

The Halifax comedy scene is a small but mighty force. It may seem elusive from the outside, but it's far from it. Comedy here is stupidly accessible, to the point where it seems you can't eat an Ace Burger anywhere without being part of a comedy show. You just need to find the circles it all moves in.

Literally every night of the week you can find a stand-up comedy show. Monday night at Gus's Pub, Andrew Vaughan hosts the city's oldest open mic at 8:30pm. Tuesday you can catch comedy bits interspersed with improv trivia at Oasis pub at 8pm. Wednesday you have the choice between Laughter Burner at Bearlys House of Blues, hosted by Paul Doucette, OR comedy night at the Dalhousie grad house, hosted by Dan Henderiken. Thursday nights things get hazy with comedy at the High Life Social club at 8pm, hosted by Devon Chittick. Or you can catch shows at Yuk Yuks Thursday through Saturday at 8pm. Finish off your week at The Toothy Moose with their comedy show “The Goofy Moose,” hosted by Ian Black. Check out local listings for numerous independent comedy shows that are frequent and feature acts from all over.

I've been doing stand up for three years now, which means I'm still a toddler. I don't hold onto the tables to walk anymore but I still shit my pants regularly. Being surrounded by comics that are staggering amounts better than I am and working hard every day is humbling and inspiring. I sincerely believe that Halifax is home to some of Canada's best comedians with the truest, most obscure voices.

Steve Mackie is a local pro who recorded his comedy album at Gus's pub this winter. Mackie's album, I'm a sensitive person, dropped last Friday on www.cdbaby.com and in its first week has reached number two out of all Canadian comedy albums. There are so many shows worth checking out with hilarious moments that cannot be re-created happening all the time. They are almost always free and close to amazing food.

The Halifax Comedy Fest is underway and as always keeping it local is a sure bet. I have the pleasure of performing in this years Homegrown showcase along with some the Maritimes best local comedians. Doors open at 7:30pm on Thursday, April 23rd at the Yuk Yuks comedy club in the Westin Nova Scotia Hotel. Hosted by Halifax's fastest rising comedian, and this year’s winner of the Hub Cap Comedy Competition; Dan Henderiken. Every act featured in this years Homegrown showcase has something unique to bring to the stage. Travis Lindsay is a Sackville local who has been crafting his skills since he was 16 years old. Sandi Rankaduwa has numerous comedy credits under her belt including writing for This Hour Has 22 Minutes. Kaitlin Shuvera is a returning homegrown champ who showcased on CBC radio's LOL broadcast last month. Andrew Vaughan is a seasoned local who is a regular at Yuk Yuks and was also part of CBC's LOL taping. Closing the show is Bryant Thompson. Bryant is one of Halifax's brightest and best. He has just returned from a cross-country tour and you're not gonna wanna miss it.

With the arts in Nova Scotia being threatened more and more daily we need to support our local talent—Lucky for you it makes for an awesome night out. See you all there.


Halifax Comedy Fest: Homegrown show
Thursday, April 23, 2015
Yuk Yuk's comedy club, Westin Nova Scotia Hotel
1181 Hollis Street, Halifax
8pm (doors open 7:30pm), $20


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