Laughter is the best medicine.
If you’ve been following the news lately, you’re probably depressed, confused, and maybe a little nihilistic. Fortunately, there’s comedy. Here are the 8 top stand-up comedians coming through Toronto in 2020 to make light of all the chaos or otherwise give you a few chuckles to get through the day.
1. Russel Peters (April 2)
Russell Peters should need no introduction. This April, the 50-year-old comic is coming back to his hometown of Toronto. The stand-up comedian and producer is back with all new material following his last special which hit Amazon streaming earlier this year. Peters was the first comedian to ever sell out Toronto’s then Air Canada Centre. This time, he’s toning it down for a more intimate setting at Meridian Hall. See Peters up close and personal on April 2!
Tickets start at $79.
2. Russell Brand (April 9)
Russell Brand, the comedian, actor, podcaster, activist, and wellness guru is stopping by Toronto in April as a part of his Recovery Tour. In his tour, Brand deliberates on the path of wellness and spirituality that lead him out of his spiral of self-destruction. Although informative, possibly enlightening, you can be assured that Brand will tell his story with his own giddy and (at times) profane brand of humour.
Tickets start at $250.
3. John Mulaney (April 10)
Contrary to popular belief, John Mulaney has not been sitting in a room on a chair eating saltines for, like, 28 years. In fact, the 37-year-old former SNL writer has been knocking it out of the park since his second special, New in Town, was released on Netflix in 2016. Since then, the comedian, writer, and producer, released a second widely acclaimed special; wrote and performed on broadway with Nick Kroll; and, most recently, released a musical comedy special for children, called John Mulaney & The Sack Lunch Bunch on Netflix.
While Mulaney has stated in previous specials that his hard drug and alcohol days are long gone, one can’t deny that this comedian is truly peaking.
Tickets start at $130.
4. Ali Wong (May 14 – 17)
Ali Wong is one the hottest comedians in the market right now, period. The comedian, actress, and writer is blazing up in her career with no signs of slowing down. After her first special, Baby Cobra, was released in 2016, Wong landed a role on the series American Housewife, released a second critically-acclaimed special, Hard Knock Wife (filmed in Toronto), co-wrote and starred in the Netflix film, Always Be My Maybe, and, most recently, penned a book called: Dear Girls: Intimate Tales, Untold Secrets, and Advice for Living Your Best Life.
I don’t know about you, but seeing as how much Wong is killing it right now, I would take all the advice she has to give. See what she has to say in one of her 6 shows from May 14 – May 17.
Tickets start at $64.84.
5. Mo Gilligan (May 15)
Mo Gilligan is one of those comedians that is still fresh on the scene. While the 32-year-old has been on the come up for years making hit comedy clips on Instagram and social media, Gilligan made the big-time with his own late night show last year, The Lateish Show with Mo Gilligan. Later on in the year Gilligan released his first special Momentum on Netflix. While maybe young, it’s clear this comedian has the chops. You can check out this purveyor of grime comedy at The Phoenix Concert Theatre this May.
Tickets start at $56.
6. Ricky Gervais (August 21, 22)
After his star-roasting, likely career-ending performance as a host on The Golden Globes this year, the untouchable, insouciant Ricky Gervais is taking something of a victory lap. The 58-year-old comedian, actor, writer, film producer, and director is returning to his roots as a stand-up with his worldwide, SuperNature show. The tour stops in Toronto for two nights at the Meridian Hall.
Tickets start at $161(second date).
7. Bill Maher (August 29)
Longtime comedian/political commentator/professor of smugness, Bill Maher is coming to Toronto off-air and on-stage. The 64-year-old native New Yorker is making a stop in the Great White North; although, something tells me that he’s leaving his political correctness at home. Known for his unflinching critical opinions, the comedian is sure to stir up the crowd with bluntly honest, hard-hitting political humor.
Tickets start at $104.
8. Trevor Noah (October 3)
As a fellow political commentator and TV Host, Trevor Noah will also be making an appearance in Toronto this year. The 36-year-old host of the Daily Show is wrapping up his worldwide tour on October 3 in the city of Toronto. The South African-born comedian is known for his social and political commentary in which he explores the landscapes of race, sex, and class with playfully sharp wit.
Tickets start at $77.45.