The 2016 Winnipeg Comedy festival is celebrating 15 years of laughs with an extended run this April.

Festival headliners include Elvira Kurt, Mr. D's Naomi Snieckus, Brent Butt of Corner Gas, and the Winnipeg improvisation duo CRUMBS.


Winnipeg improvisers Lee White and Stephen Sim, known as CRUMBS, are one of the local headliners at the Winnipeg Comedy Festival in April. (

"I am happy to continue the tradition with a lineup that is very special and star-studded," said Winnipeg Comedy Festival artistic director Lara Rae in a news release.

"We have really tried hard to reflect and celebrate not just our anniversary, but the positive new voices that are being heard in our community and our culture," she said.

This year's festival begins a few days early on Sunday, April 3 and runs until April 10. It will feature a panel discussion on indigenous comics and audiences as well as a show dedicated to first and second generation Canadians and their families, said the festival's release.

Opening the festival on April 3 at Club Regent Event Centre is American stand-up comedian Louie Anderson, star of the 1990s sitcom Life with Louie.

Big names at the 2016 Winnipeg Comedy Festival:

  • Mary Walsh
  • Sean Cullen
  • Elvira Kurt
  • Erica Sigurdson
  • John Wing
  • Louie Anderson
  • Darryl Lenox
  • Naomi Snieckus

The festival's Gala Series at Pantages Playhouse Theatre begins Thursday, April 7, with a "Born This Way" show, said the release. It's hosted by Brent Butt of Corner Gas and is all about poking fun at the quirks that make us unique.

Other themed-nights this year include a nerd-focused "All Geek To Me" show hosted by Naomi Snieckus of Mr. D and the all-female No-Bro Show.

Audiences will also get the chance to see a taping of CBC's The Debaters, a CRUMBS and Friends improv showcase, a Weird Al Yankovic-inspired karaoke night and the festival's new Neighbourhoods Show, where current and former Winnipeggers riff on their home turfs, said the festival's release.

More information is available on the Winnipeg Comedy Festival website.