DURHAM — It’s about the laughs, but not just the laughs for Jean Paul.
The Ajax comedian is taking the stage at the St. Francis Centre, 78 Church St. S., Ajax, on Jan. 5 at 7:30 p.m. for what he calls a "Comedy Revival." Joining him are a slew of well-known funny people: Howard Glassman of Humble Howard fame, Daniel Woodrow and Nigel Grinstead, who have been seen at the Just for Laughs festival, Shannon Laverty, who has been on CBC Radio, and Winnipeg’s Chanty Marostica, 2018 winner of SiriusXM’s Top Comic.
And, of course, Paul as “the ringmaster.”
“Just life, things I find funny,” he replied, when asked what he jokes about. “I talk about real-life things people can relate to.”
“I like to be silly; I like to be uplifting. I like to spread the message of love and ‘let’s be good to each other.’”
Paul has been making people laugh as a professional for almost 25 years. He has been on CBC Radio’s The Strombo Show several times and was Fluff E. the Hip-Hop Bunny on The Comedy Network’s The Buzz series. Paul has travelled all over Canada, the U.S., the Caribbean, South Africa and the U.K., performing at some legendary venues. But one sticks out: the Apollo Theater in New York City, where music legends such as Miles Davis, James Brown, Sarah Vaughan and Billie Holiday have taken the stage.
“It’s just so historic,” he said.
Paul says he’s been a comedy fan for as long as he can remember, and knew he wanted to be a comedian when he was 12. He took the stage at Yuk Yuk’s in Toronto when he was 19 — and says it went “way better than it should have.
“I jumped on that stage and never looked back,” he said.
As for the theme in Ajax, he says it’s a play on words: Paul says he’s reviving comedy as a whole in the area, and as the venue is a former place of worship, it echoes a church revival.