Stand-ups. They’re the foot soldiers of comedy. And this week 200 jokers from 15 countries converge on Montreal for the world’s largest annual comedy festival—Just for Laughs/Juste pour rire (July 22 to Aug. 1). Toronto is headquarters to the world’s largest comedy-club chain, Mark Breslin’s Yuk Yuk’s.
Some Canadians who can stand up and be counted:
•Jim Carrey. A chameleon. Canada’s answer to Robin Williams. Ex-impressionist. Token white on TV’s In Living Color. Pretended to wet his pants on Arsenio.
•Howie Mandel. Canada’s answer to Jerry Lewis. Utterly convincing as an American. TV acting career has taken him from St. Elsewhere to The Amazing Live Sea Monkeys.
•André-Philippe Gagnon. Mimic. A Quebec prodigy who sang all 18 parts in We Are the World. Plays Vegas.
•Rich Little. Mimic from the
days when impressionists did impressions. Plays Vegas.
•Sandra Shamas. Funny feminist. Shows include My Boyfriend’s Back and There’s Going to Be Laundry. Featured in Gail Singer’s slyly titled 1991 documentary on female stand-up comics, Wisecracks.
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