Stand-up comedy students wonder if they’re laughing with you or at you

by | Mar 18, 2019 | A&E, Lakeshore

Nathaniel Smith, Arts Reporter

Laughter was a challenge for Humber Comedy Writing and Performance students as awkward silence and abortion jokes left the room quiet during a stand up show at Yuk Yuk’s comedy club.

The comics took the stage in downtown Toronto on March 12 showing up prepared with their acts, hoping to impress family and friends in attendance.

The Yuk Yuk’s comedy club audience waiting for the next Humber student to go on stage to perform. (Nathaniel Smith)

The show started at 7:30 p.m., the same scheduled time that the class performs at Lakeshore campus every Tuesday night for two hours.

With a crowd of mothers and underage children viewing the show, the comics had to pull out all their best jokes during the five minute sets they were given.

The bombing started early as the crowd were trying to figure out what the punchlines were or how the topics were funny. Many comics improvised jokes focused on two 14-year-old boys in the club sitting in the front row and trying to fix the dark humored abortion jokes.

“It’s kind of fun when they don’t laugh, before I used to be nervous about it but now, I don’t care since your jokes will hit or miss,” said Jherad Alleyne, a second-year comedy student at Lakeshore.

Edworld B. Kim, a second-year student in the Lakeshore Comedy program, leaving the venue after his class finished their gigs on March 12. (Nathaniel Smith)

Although the crowd response didn’t go as planned, each student still mustered enough confidence to finish their sets or, as one female student comedian did, waited and stared at an audience member until the set time ended.

The energy changed at times for the better for a couple of students, including Edworld B. Kim, a second-year comedy student with a Korean background.

“I’m from another country and have an accent so they think I’m pretty funny, and also my punchlines come from many observations and are made up on the spot so it makes me better every time,” Kim said.

Hhis set was focused on his Korean roots and wanting to be a ninja.


Comedy Writing and Performance students from left, Jherad Alleyne, Hadi Kubba, Vito Paul, Edworld B. Kim, and Bria Hibert outside of Yuk Yuk’s comedy club on March 12 after their 7:30 p.m. show. (Nathaniel Smith)

“The audience felt my effort on the stage, that’s why I got good reactions,” Kim said.

“I want to improve (my) language, I know I’m a funny guy but the language doesn’t follow my acting speech and if I can get it to match, I’ll get the crowd response I want,” he said.

The students were able to leave with things to improve on, the students reflecting on each member’s set. They return to Yuk Yuk’s on March 19.