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Photo courtesy cosmic_flurk

Unwind from the stress of school with a night of laughs

By Jesse Stilwell, November 1 2017 — 

A commonly overlooked form of affordable entertainment in Calgary is live comedy. Students are under a ridiculous amount of stress and laughter is one of the best ways to decompress. The Comedy Cave is one casual and welcoming environment worth checking out.

With a wide range of ages in The Comedy Cave audience, everyone can have a great time. While you should never take comedy too seriously, the jokes are usually palatable and avoid unnecessarily offending anyone in the crowd. Featured talent includes Calgary comedians who can poke fun at local issues, especially divisive Alberta politics that aren’t usually a source of smiles. The venue also attracts international comedians from the U.S. and beyond who can give you a funny distraction from the stress of assignments and midterms. Some shows start around 7:30 p.m. — great if you can’t stay out all night — but there are also shows at 10 p.m. for night owls.

Shows usually feature a well-known headliner along with an opening act who is typically a local up-and-coming comedian. I went to a show at The Comedy Cave opened by Jake Poirer, who framed his set around the typical struggle of moving out for the first time and had the entire crowd cracking up through his relatability. You can expect the host to crack a couple jokes too, as they’re usually a comedian themselves. Depending on the comic performing, the humour can touch on a variety of topics or involve physical comedy and experimental jokes.

Food and drinks at The Comedy Cave are relatively inexpensive and delicious. Guests are charged a minimum $7.50 on top of their ticket — which can be covered with just a drink — but they can also grab a full dinner and drink for under $25. Tickets are only $12 and there’s usually a Groupon discount available.

The Comedy Cave will be closed until Nov. 14, when they will reopen in a new and bigger location. Their first headliner in the new space is American comic Stewart Huff, who was honoured with the 2016 Critics Choice award for the Best Comedy at the Orlando Fringe Festival and is renowned for his storytelling prowess. Tickets are on sale now for shows at the new location, 1020 8 Ave. SW.

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