Wednesday night’s baptism of fire for Pierre-Yves Roy-Desmarais, who hosted his first-ever Just for Laughs gala to mark the festival’s 40th anniversary. For the occasion, the comedian had surrounded himself with a select group of friends, more or less well-known, of vastly varying numbers, if somewhat unevenly. But no matter: the audience did not hide their joy and everyone was warmly welcomed.
Posted at 12:11 p.m
With good reason: For the first time in two years, Just for Laughs had the right to a ‘conventional’ gala, known as ‘garnish’, at 6pm sharp here. Fully dressed, to the maximum of its capacity, you will understand. And the spectators at the Maisonneuve Theater on Place des Arts seemed, frankly, happy to finally have the numbers to applaud loudly and give each comedian a standing ovation.
Great start with this inaugural number in which the dear host took center stage, including at the Les Olivier Gala, the crowned discovery of the year and he did not hesitate to remind us of it. Wearing a red tuque to the beat of the hip-hop rhythms of the Ouellette family brothers, Pierre-Yves Roy-Desmarais (PY for his friends) had a big day dancing and singing energetically and daring some equally salacious rhymes They are absurd, which made audiences of all ages laugh.
Special mention goes to his surprise guests Élyse Marquis and Jay Du Temple, without forgetting Matthieu Pepper (at the beginning and then at the end of the show in a pre-recorded surreal video), the evening’s shy whipping boy.
Pierre-Yves Roy-Desmarais has energy left, we know that. It stirs the air, and this number hasn’t belied its reputation.
That said, the rest of this first gala (a series of two, one at 6 p.m., attended by The pressthe other at 9pm), the comedian was far more discreet, content to present his guests (sorry, his “friends”) (admittedly energetically) on the right side of the room.
Maybe he was saving energy for the second show? Too bad we would have taken more.
However, the numbers that followed did not disappoint. On the contrary, some beautiful discoveries are worth mentioning. Pierre-Yves Roy-Desmarais initially left the microphone to Charles Pellerin, very touching with his self-mockery number about his illness alopecia (hair and body hair). Surprising choice to start the evening but why not. “Everyone thinks I have cancer, but no, I’m just looking. »
Change of register with the tiktokeuse Mégan Brouillard (and the surprise guest: Chantal Machabée!), who surfs more on ice hockey, more precisely women’s hockey. And let’s just say that sport may have found its best spokesperson in her. Both raw and slobbery, feminist, a little, a lot, then not at all, the young comedian has a lot to say on the subject.
We fell in love with David Beaucage, who landed a series of gags with no limbs, neither head nor tail, and most notably managed to rhyme Greta with Karla Homolka. It has to be done.
“You are good, my friends, aren’t you? ‘ the innkeeper slipped over here. Positive.
Mixed feelings, however, for the following number from Alexandre Forest, a self-proclaimed “Mononcle” who has at least the credit for fending off “Mononcles” jokes. Marylène Gendron started out with a few conventional butt jokes before moving on to a more promising streak on the side of her love-hate relationship with food. His McDo drive-through “Play” will keep us laughing for a long time.
Yacine Belhousse, Pierre-Yves Roy-Desmarais’ French guest, then only smiled here and there, and we can understand why: his number about his least favorite billionaires (really Batman?) was lengthy and frankly lacking Rhythm.
Fortunately, then came Adib Alkhalidey, the highlight of the evening, undoubtedly the strongest (and craziest) number of this first gala.
In a matter of minutes, the comedian with the bushy beard managed to transport us to his adopted home and his village of “psychopaths”, where he has just moved. And he, how is he? Nothing to report except that he is addicted to cookies and talks to trees. You have to hear him imitate the foxes. They sound like “murder of the homeless”. Suppose we suspect that nature hasn’t calmed him down all that much. And that’s good. By the way, note for those interested: The comedian will be present at all galas.
Note that the series of galas (with two different galas per evening) this Thursday evening (21st with Phil Roy and Roxane Bruneau as hosts), Friday (22nd with Richardson Zéphir and Eddy King) and Saturday (23rd with Rosalie Vaillancourt) is continued.