New Prince Edward Island comics eager to launch aBigWHAT

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Sally Cole
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Sketch comedy show at The Guild in Charlottetown today and Saturday

aBigWHAT Sketch Comedy Show takes place April 25-26 at 9 p.m. at The Guild in Charlottetown. Tickets are available at the box office or by calling 620-3333.

Like Star Trek, the next generation of comics is getting ready to launch a new comedy enterprise.

Piloted by stage manager Kassinda Bulger and crewed by Cameron MacDonald, Justin Shaw, Ben Hartley, Olivia King and Jacob Rollwage, the new company is preparing to boldly go where no man or woman has ever gone before.

“As performers, we’re taking the show into the depths of our minds, for better or worse. So audience members will get an unfiltered view of what we think is funny,” says Hartley, during a break in rehearsals for aBigWHAT Sketch Comedy Show, which hits the boards of The Guild Main Stage today and Saturday at 9 p.m.

“We hope that everyone will come along (with us) for the ride.”

Through a combination of stage and video clips, company members will present one-of-a-kind perspectives on modern culture and Prince Edward Island life.

“We don’t want to give anything away. But you can expect a high level of energy. We’re going to be in the audience’s faces and the jokes are going to come at a quick clip, one right after the other.”

There will also be some new improv games as well as some surprises, adds Shaw.

“The whole night is about taking a risk. Someone might have an idea that’s really crazy, but then they get the courage to give it a shot and we get to see what happens.

“We’ll be stepping out in different areas of our lives that people might not recognize. If anyone has seen the Popalopalots shows that Cameron and I have done, they will provide a glimpse into the madness that they’ll see on stage that night,” says Shaw, who is thrilled to be part of this comedy combination.

“It’s the next step of comedians making their stride in Charlottetown. It’s a brand new sketch show. It’s a world premiere. And after a crappy winter, people need to have a good laugh. They deserve this show.”

The fully-formed production has been waiting on the launch pad for a little while.

“Cameron and Justin have been working on this sketch comedy show for almost a year. Then, I guess, the stars lined up,” says Hartley.

“Justin is moving away in mid-May, so they thought, ‘if we’re going to do this, we have to do this now.’

“They contacted me, and I was completely on board,” says Hartley, who is also a member of the Popalopalots.

One thing led to another and others were invited to join the troupe.

“Cameron knew Jacob from other endeavours so he jumped on board and we were lucky enough to get Olivia King, known for her musical theatre work with Anne & Gilbert – The Musical, to join us, as well. So here we are, ready to go.”

King is excited to be part of the group.

“It’s wonderful to be able to add my thoughts to the creative process.”

And what about future shows?

Shaw is optimistic.

“We’re kind of testing the waters. It’s a pilot, in some ways. And if it goes really well, there might be something more from the company.”

Organizations: The Guild

Geographic location: Prince Edward Island, Charlottetown

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  • James
    April 26, 2014 - 18:33

    Caught the Friday show. Amazing job all of you, lots of laughs!