“Dying is easy. Comedy is difficult” is a quote widely attributed to various actors on their deathbeds, from Shakespearian actor Sir Edmund Kean who died in 1833, to Jack Lemmon who shuffled off his mortal coil in 2001.
It’s probably an urban myth that when a famous actor on his deathbed was asked if dying was difficult, he replied that it was easy compared to the challenges poised by doing comedy well. Like beauty, comedy is subjective and dependent on the beholder’s perception.
Marshall Button has spent more than 40 years writing (and often performing) comedy in New Brunswick and across Canada and abroad. He has been writing a humour column for Brunswick News for seven-and-a-half years.
In his presentation, Marshall will discuss the many changes in comedy throughout his life and touch on some of the dos and don’ts. Please bring your work to share.
The workshop will take place at 33 Church Street, Moncton, from one to three pm on Saturday, January 13. There is normally no parking here but the building has the use of the adjacent lot on Saturdays. Coffee and tea will be served.
About Marshall Button:
Marshall Button is currently the artist-in-residence at the Capitol Theatre in Moncton, New Brunswick. Previously, he was the artistic director of the Upper Canada Playhouse in Morrisburg, Ontario where he spent nine years developing new Canadian plays and dividing his time as a writer, director and actor. Best known for his original creation Lucien, he has performed Lucien well over 1,500 times while touring to every Canadian province since the show premiered as a full-length solo play in 1986. Over the years, he has made several visits to CBC Radio, specifically for Morningside with Peter Gzowski, Sunday Morning, and This Morning where his commentaries have covered every topic from the Quebec Referendum to Frank McKenna’s resignation. Lucien has appeared several times on The Halifax Comedy Festival on CBC TV and Madly Off In All Directions for CBC Radio.
Marshall has made many appearances on television in drama, commercials, and has been the featured story for the CTV National News, CBC’s Midday and The National. He has contributed countless commentary performances for CBC Radio and Television, including a guest appearance on Royal Canadian Airfarce, and on Sportsnet during the 2006 Memorial Cup Hockey Tournament. In 1997, he co-wrote the East Coast Music Awards Television Show where as an actor, he opened and closed the show before a national audience. Recent television credits include three episodes of Daring and Grace, and his most recent film work was as a dialogue coach and actor in David Adams Richards’s The Bay of Love and Sorrows. His duties at the Capitol in Moncton include heading up the successful HubCap Comedy Festival, developing local artistic talent in both official languages and running a theatre-training program for people of all ages.