Grand Montreal Comedie Fest – The new kid in town on the Montreal summer festival scene has just unleashed what it will have to offer Francophone comedy fans throughout the Montreal area. And judging by the looks of it, this line-up for its rookie edition looks like quite an ambitious one.
On May 2, the line-up of shows for the inaugural edition of the Grand Montreal Comedie Fest, which runs from July 1 to 15, was officially unveiled to a gathering of local media and a number of performers who will be appearing at the festival, at a 5 a 7 event that took place at Montreal Cowork, located on St. Denis Street in the heart of the Plateau Mont Royal district.
Led by the festival’s recently-appointed Director General Diane Arsenault, along with a rotating repertoire of prominent Quebecois comedians such as Martin Petit, Charles Deschamps, Melanie Couture and Gabriel D’Almeida Freitas, the gathering was given a brief taste of the shows that will be part of this year’s Grand Montreal Comedie Fest, which will go under the theme “Une idée de Fous!”
It all starts on July 1 at the Theatre Olympia with a comedy marathon of sorts called “100 Comedians in 100 Minutes”. Featuring a hodgepodge mix of veteran comedians, up and coming comedians, male comedians, female comedians, etc., these featured 100 comics have been challenged to go up on stage and tell a favourite joke of theirs … and it all has to be accomplished within the pre-determined time limit of 100 minutes.
The “Grands Spectacles Comedie Fest” (July 1, 5, 6, 7 and 14) will feature at least nine of the best Francophone comics for a nightly showcase of topnotch comedy at the Olympia; as well, similar “Grands Spectacles” will take place at the Le Zenith in St. Eustache and the Pavillon de l’Ile in Chateauguay on July 5 and 6. The Olympia will also be the place for comedy night owls with the late night series “Comedie Fest La Nuit” (July 5, 6, 7 and 13). And for those who like their stand-up comedy in an intimate, American-style comedy club setting, then check out the Comedie Fest Formule Club series at two Montreal venues – Le Bordel and l’Abreuvoir – every night from July 1 to 15.
Tickets for the first edition of the Grand Montreal Comedie Fest, which ranges in price between $15 and $20, are now on sale and can be purchased by going to the festival’s website at www.comediefest.com