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Big City Laughs: Guide to the YYComedy Festival


Alternative comic Andy Kindler performs in Calgary. Photo: courtesy YYComedy Festival.

Alternative comic Andy Kindler performs in Calgary. Photo: courtesy YYComedy Festival.

Following a successful launch last year, the YYComedy Festival is back and even bigger. September 9 through 15, the festival features over 80 comics at 15 venues.

Whereas last year’s festival was largely a showcase for local talent due to its association with the Calgary 2012 Cultural Capital campaign, this year’s roster has expanded to include several big names from across North America. “It really opened the doors for us to bring in whoever we want,” says festival organizer Harry Doupe of its inaugural 2012 success.

Comedians will perform at a variety of venues such as the Comedy Cave, Yuk Yuk’s and Lolita’s Lounge. Doupe says audiences can expect big names in small spaces, meaning some of comedy’s best will perform in intimate venues.

For example, Andy Kindler (The Late Show with David Letterman, Maron) and Levi MacDougall (Important Things with Demetri Martin) were dubbed two of the top three alternative comics of 2012 by the The New York Times. Both will perform stand-up routines at the famed Loose Moose Theatre Company on Thursday, September 12.

Elsewhere, catch a live version of CBC Radio’s popular comedic clash The Debaters, hosted by Steve Patterson, on Saturday, September 14 at Martha Cohen Theatre. Also on September 14, Kevin McDonald, star of the cult comedy program Kids In The Hall, hosts Canadian Champs of Comedy, a night of stand up comedy featuring a lineup of Canadian Comedy Award winners at the Boyce Theatre at Stampede Park.

The festival’s signature gala features several comedians on Sunday, September 15 at Jack Singer Concert Hall in the EPCOR CENTRE for the Performing Arts. Hosted by actor Dave Foley (Kids In The Hall, Maron, Veep), the lineup will include Canadian Comedy Award winners Nikki Payne, Derek Edwards and Pete Zedlacher, plus local performers.

YYComedy Festival, September 9 through 15 at various venues. yycomedy.ca
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