Comedy in the time of COVID-19: How Canadian comics are making us laugh
Live comedy events have been cancelled across Canada in response to COVID-19, but comedians are still finding ways to keep themselves and others entertained from the self-isolated comfort of their own homes. We rounded up a few of the comedians keeping their social distance, while also providing some much-needed laughter.
Family bonding activities
With school cancelled, Kim's Convenience star and improv comedian, Andrew Phung is taking his kid's education into his own hands. Andrew Phung's School of Life is in session, and he's teaching the most important lessons.
The “Andrew Phung School of Life” is in session. Registrants are 6 and 3 years old and today we sat down and made a daily schedule! 🏠📝📚 <a href="https://t.co/OiSIsig9Qv">pic.twitter.com/OiSIsig9Qv</a>—@andrewphung
No school for three weeks so I’m enrolling the boys into “Andrew Phung’s school of life”. Today’s lesson, Dishes 101! <a href="https://t.co/XBdKuEzwHx">pic.twitter.com/XBdKuEzwHx</a>—@andrewphung
“Andrew Phung’s School of Life” had a slight detour yesterday due to Frozen 2 hitting Disney+. But today we’re back on track with today’s lesson, Pillow Forts 101! <a href="https://t.co/GN2oEkC3fI">pic.twitter.com/GN2oEkC3fI</a>—@andrewphung
Pat Thornton and his wife have been taking arts and crafts to another level. His kid's adorable and surprisingly accurate impressions of famous people will melt your heart. Check out all 15 of these pictures in the Twitter thread:
To help us all get through these troubling, times we’ll be dressing up Larry as different famous people using things we find in our house (Maggie’s a craft wiz)<br><br>Please let us know if you have any requests for <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/LarryLooks?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#LarryLooks</a> <br><br>Here’s Larry as Canadian Astronaut Roberta Bondar <a href="https://t.co/wydXqlE6hV">pic.twitter.com/wydXqlE6hV</a>—@patthornton
Larry Look #6 Mrs. Doubfire <a href="https://twitter.com/hashtag/LarryLooks?src=hash&ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">#LarryLooks</a> <a href="https://t.co/aSWE7XnIoT">pic.twitter.com/aSWE7XnIoT</a>—@patthornton
Comedian couple, Matt O'Brien and Julia Hladkowicz, started off their quarantine by reenacting scenes from hit sitcom, Frasier:
my wife and I are still quarantining and we don't plan to stop reenacting scenes from Frasier any time soon <a href="https://t.co/R2nG8a0t4r">pic.twitter.com/R2nG8a0t4r</a>—@matt_obrien
Then, they drove back to Canada from Los Angeles, playing the biggest game of "The floor is lava."
just because me and <a href="https://twitter.com/juliacomedy?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@juliacomedy</a> are driving across the United States to escape to Canada doesn't mean we can't still pitch a travel show if anyone wants to buy this one <a href="https://t.co/0EEp38wLfz">pic.twitter.com/0EEp38wLfz</a>—@matt_obrien
Virtual Improv Comedy
Canadians are improvising ways to do comedy without a live audience. This is what improv comedy is all about!
The Sunday Service is a Vancouver comedy group that produces a weekly show held at the Fox Cabaret. They made their comedy show available to watch on YouTube. You can watch their "Cyber Service" live show, and bring your weirdest audience suggestions next Sunday!
Online Open Mics
After her comedy show was cancelled, Winnipeg comedian Sarah London started the #Covid19OnlineComedyOpenMic on Instagram. Comedians have been posting Instagram videos of themselves telling jokes alone, using household objects as microphones, and tagging #Covid19OnlineComedyOpenMic.
"Audience feedback is such a huge part of stand-up," said Sarah London to Marcy Markusa on CBC Manitoba's Information Radio, "...doing this creates a sense of community that feels like you're still watching with people."
Similarly, Toronto comedians Sean Cullen and Chris Locke called for an online comedy fest on Twitter. You can find and join the fest with the hashtag #Covid19OnlineComedyFest.
Jokes Please! filmed their hilarious "Scrappy First Attempt" of their weekly live stand-up comedy show with no audience members in Vancouver.
Make cooking and baking fun!
Learning to bake with Second City alum Jan Caruana's Instagram videos are a great way to spend your unexpected amount of free time in isolation. Watch her improvise her way through Momofuku's famous Birthday Cake, brownies, and more!
And finally, even though the season has wrapped, 22 Minutes is still live on Twitter and helping to see the humour in today's situation.
Watch: "Angry Home Yoga" sketch
Gavin Crawford is still doing CBC's Because News from home, but now it's through Google Hangouts. Listen to their latest Bonus Podcast: Social Distancing with Gavin Crawford.