I like to complain about not being in Melbourne. I miss that city – its buildings, its festivals, and most of all its comedians. But Victoria, BC hosts quite a number of comedy events year-round. Here is a hopefully-comprehensive list. Have I missed anything?
Hecklers Bar & Grill plays host to Victoria’s longest-running stand-up night in Victoria (as far as I’m aware). On Friday and Saturday nights stand-up comedians (mostly, if not all, Canadian) perform. Shows are at 9pm and cost $10. Call them to reserve.
Hecklers also hosts an amateur comedy night every second Sunday(ish). Check out their Facebook page for more information.
Upstairs Lounge Ramada Victoria Hotel, every second Wednesday 8:oo-9:30pm. No cover.
Ratfish is a fairly new comedy night. It’s run by Mark Robertson, and started last November. Lineups feature amateur comedians, plus headliners like Wes Borg, and Jason Lamb from The Zone.
Phillips Comedy Night
Second Sunday of the month at the Victoria Event Centre. Doors at 7:30pm, show at 8pm. $10/8.
“Stand-up. Sketch. Music. Videos. Improv. If it’s funny we’ve got it at Phillips Comedy Night.”
Used to be Run by Wes Borg. Now run by Paul McKinnon. According to their Facebook page, this night has been around since 2008.
Next show: Emperor Jimbo presents Sweet Treats. March 10-19. Doors at 7:30pm, show at 8pm. Victoria Event Centre. $20/15
Atomic Vaudeville is THE Victoria cabaret troupe. They’ve been around since 2004, and have performed over 50 episodes of their crazy, messy, frenetic, hilarious cabarets. Featuring many of Victoria’s top performers, AV just keeps going. And that’s a good thing.
Tuesday nights at 8pm (no show April 5); finale on June 21. Victoria Event Centre. $12/10
Sin City is a live improvised soap opera. It premiered this February, and follows a cast of characters through 20 episodes. Taking place in 1984, “this season will feature the hi-jinks, foibles and shenanigans of a wealthy family whose fortune was built on the invention of typewriter-ribbon – and soon faces peril amid intrigue, lust, and betrayal.” Episodes are accompanied by a live, improvised musical score. Newcomers can read program notes if they’ve missed episodes.
Third Sunday of every month. Victoria Event Centre.
The Showdown pits seven performers against each other, for a prize of $100! “Created by improviser and storyteller Dave Morris, The Showdown is hosted by Victoria’s own Rod Peter Jr and features performers from all artistic pursuits: stand-up comedians, musicians, actors, poets, storytellers, dancers, M.C.s, improvisers, you name it we have it!” This night’s been going strong since 2009.
Underground Comedy Fort
An evening of amateur stand-up, March 15 at the Fort Street Cafe. Doors at 7:30pm, show starts at 8:30pm. $5
As far as I know, this is just a one-off event, but maybe it will become regular if it’s successful. Organized by Wes Lord. Lineup is on the Facebook event page.
Third Thursday of the month. Cabin 12. Doors at 7:30pm. $5
Slam poetry isn’t technically comedy, but it can be pretty darned funny. Victoria’s slam poets are mindblowingly talented. If you’ve never been to a slam, you absolutely should.
Final show: April 28. Intrepid Theatre Club.
The Impromaniacs have been around for 21 years, and 2011 marks the end for them. They will do one final show on April 28 “featuring a mix of music, poetry, improv (of all flavours) from friends/alumni/local performers.”
Canadian Improv Games: Vancouver Island
Stump Ranch Comedy
Run by Kevin Banner. An occasional comedy night in Sooke.
Felicita’s pub at UVic often has amateur stand-up nights. Nothing at the moment though…
Loading Ready Run
They’re not stand-up and they’re not live… but you don’t have to leave your house to see them. Loading Ready Run are Victoria’s own Internet comedy troupe.
No Way Yes Way
Some of the second years in Applied Communication at Camosun have just started their own production company, and are putting out funny skits every week. Check em out!
**Let me know if I’ve missed anything!**