As half of ?Boot Scootin? Boogie? duo Brooks & Dunn, Ronnie Dunn has played everywhere from the arena to the rodeo, beer joints to casinos. His Texas twang and electric guitar chronicle 20 years of wide-ranging exploits on his self-titled debut solo album. After he and Kix Brooks played their last show together in 2010, Dunn set to work as the new album's sole producer and main songwriter. "This time around, I baked it,? he said. ?I baked it and cooked it, and cooked it again.? His signature rowdy honky-tonk kicks through in the single ?Let the Cowboy Rock,? and the poignant ballad of forgiveness, ?Bleed Red," urges listeners to ?turn the anger into water / let it slip through our hands.?
Canadian Comedy Award-winning funnyman Gerry Dee, known to some as ?Gerry Dee ? Sports Reporter? on The Score and the star of the upcoming CBC sitcom Mr. D, channels his years as a father, collegiate hockey player, and physical educator into a night of poignant laughs on his ?Life After Teaching? tour. Gerry?s gift of gab and guffaw-extracting demeanor has eclipsed his sports career, making him one of the most sought-after comedians in both Canada and its trouser landmass called America. The first Canadian in 27 years to win the San Francisco International Comedy Competition, where Robin Williams and Dana Carvey once battled to the death, Gerry garners empathetic laughs with his intrinsic charisma and sharp observational humour about the foibles of marriage and the unbearable lightness of offspring.
Instant Theatre Company not only stages off-the-cuff improv shows, it instructs others in the art. "Our preference is to give you the overall experience," the company says on its website. This translates to classes that emphasize character, scene work, and story, the blend of which helps students develop comedic timing, learn team-building skills, and make up really great excuses when they forget their mother's birthday. The result: quick-witted shows that engage both the actors and the audience. And though the company focuses much of its energy on improv, it also embraces other comedic forms, namely sketch comedy taught by Kids in the Hall alum Kevin McDonald and standup classes helmed by festival regular and CTV star Adam Pateman.
The members of Instant Theatre founded the Vancouver International Improv Festival to not only bring performers from across the globe together, but to also spotlight fresh comedy around the corner. Improvisers from faraway lands such as Toronto, Los Angeles, New York, and Seattle share the stage with Vancouver natives, performing in their own troupes and mixing into ad-hoc ensembles for memorable sketches. The week culminates with a super-group performance by the International Ensemble—a group of participating artists that forms for one week only to tackle new forms and forge new collaborations.
Since its Toronto location opened in 1976, Yuk Yuk's has been a collective launching pad for such comedy heavyweights as Jim Carrey, Rick Moranis, and Russell Peters. All of Yuk Yuk's laugh-establishments invite seasoned jokesters and up-and-coming comedians to their stages every weekend for up to four days of high hilarity and three nights of cozy lodging atop their cocktail tables. Many Yuk Yuk's locations offer drinks, dinner, or bar fare during the show, but those interested in dining should contact their club of choice to find out about reservations.
Vancouver TheatreSports League mingles the adrenaline rush of athletic events with the dramatic drollery of improv comedy to produce sidesplitting shows that are crafted on the spot for 60 minutes of audience-integrated outlandishness. Audience earthlings yell out suggestions as the multitalented improvisers ignite games and challenge themselves to bring laughter to your tears. Scared Scriptless's comedic members cultivate the genre's most admired styles while pushing envelopes into feral territory previously only trekked by wild yard gnomes and hyena nightmares.