Two Finns, a Swede, a Dane and a Canadian actor with a lead role in a hit TV show ALL walk into a bar. That’s the basic idea behind THE FOUR NORSEMEN COMEDY SHOW. On Friday July 8th, this fearsome foursome of headlining comics take over Toronto’s Social Capital Theatre and we’re bringing in the big guns, er, Viking axes – with special guest host Kristian Bruun
And to clarify, no we won’t be performing this show in Finnish, Swedish, Danish or Icelandic, or any botched variation of Scandinavian dialects. The way this show came to be is that all of us on the bill found our way to Toronto from our own respective small cities across Canada. And as we started working together and became fast friends on the Toronto standup scene, we realized we had similarly Scandinavian ancestry. Calwyn Shurgold (hailing from Brantford, Ontario) is a second generation Finn. Lars Classington, while originally from London (yes, the Canadian one) might in fact be the last living Viking. Certainly on Canadian soil. Anna Gustafson (who shares mine and Calwyn’s Suomalainen roots also has Swedish origins and comes from a small fishing village on the West Coast that bares that in name – Lund, BC).
And me, Dean – your intrepid comedy editor – I come from Finnish bloodlines on both sides. Born and raised in Thunder Bay, Ontario (a small Northern city that shares a border with Minnesota where Scandinavian descent is almost the majority) Thunder Bay in fact has the most Finns in the world outside of Finland. I grew up eating the food, my family calls me by my Finnish name, and we even had Finn language class all through high school… It didn’t do me a lot of good when I’d skip French class growing up, and later move to Ottawa for a stint. But still, I’m proud enough to have the map of Finland tattoo’d on my forearm.
We got to talking, and last year originally planned some sort of comedy show/live podcast panel during “Finnfest” passing through Toronto in the summer of 2015. But a torrential downpour had other plans. So, we reunited. And here we are – we’re taking our Scandinavian-Canadian standup show on the road… well OK, up to the Danforth. This Friday July 8th at The Social Capital Theatre (upstairs at Toronto’s Black Swan Tavern)
So before you come rushing out to the show – how about a little background?
Our guest host Kristian Bruun is of Finnish descent, we’re told. And readers should definitely know him for his leading role as “Donny” on the hit Canadian sci-fi drama Orphan Black. A role where Bruun brings a great deal of comedy to the sometimes tense atmosphere of the show
Calwyn Shurgold is also currently appearing on Orphan Black, playing the part of Hellwizard! An all-around Renaissance man who can cross between standup and sketch, performing often in character – such as his Hip Hop alter ego “Whyte Wyne”. Calwyn has also appeared on Much Music, and has a diverse film & television resume as an actor
Anna Gustafson is a veteran Canadian comic, who’s been a touring club comic and headliner for over 20 years. She’s also one of the powerhouse producers behind Toronto’s HUGELY successful She Dot Festival An independent comedy festival that draws in headliners and performers from across North America.
Anna Gustafson She Dot Festival
Lars Classington is a standup comedian with electric amounts of mayhem energy on-stage. He’s also an actor, musician and all-around multi-talented performer who’s appeared on stage throughout Canada. On the big screen, small screen and on major Canadian networks like YTV and Comedy Network.
And then there’s me, Dean. Your comedy editor. And the manchild CEO behind Talkhole Podcast Network Canada’s comedy podcast network, which proudly presents and co-produces this Scandinavian flavoured night of standup. As a proud Canadian comic and a good old Suomalainen Poika, I’m proud to share the stage at the SoCap with these friends and brethren. With our shared bone structure and decidedly cheery outlook considering our heritage and our career choices.
And last but not least, you can reserve your tickets for this Friday online – and save $5! Book now for $10 advanced. Just give our fancy poster art a click and that link will magically whisk you away (through Icelandic elf magic) over to Lars Classington’s personal site, for a deal on tickets. Oh, and we should thank our friend Wojtek Arciszewski for the show art. He might not come from the land of the ice and snow, but he’s definitely a wizard in his own right.
Book now, and we’ll see you Friday at the SoCap!