CEO Comedy Classic

October 6, 2016, Elgin Theatre, Toronto at 7:30 pm

Doors open at 7:00 pm
Come early & rock with the Humour Me Band

Humour Me is a charity event where a group of committed sponsors, brave CEOs and Canadian and international stand-up comics come together to raise money for youth-related charities. Humour Me applies a twist to the standard stand-up routine by bringing together both professional comedians and influential, high-profile amateurs to perform together.

The focus of the event is raising funds to support organizations that deliver vital services to young people.  To date we have donated over $6,200,000 to some incredible groups who are working hard to make a real difference in the lives of young Canadians.  This year the net proceeds of Humour Me will support the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Mount Sinai Hospital.

A Message from the Founder

Humour Me gives a concept commonly found on reality TV a comedic twist by inviting high-profile and influential business professionals to perform a short stand-up routine in front of a live audience. The contestants will compete to be recognized as the “Funniest Amateur” of the evening. Not only will the CEOs have to write and perform five minutes of original stand-up comedy, they’ll have to juggle comedy classes, everyday business and fundraising. They will flip through their Rolodexes, strong-arm their business associates and beg for every possible dollar for our charity. After intense coaching by seasoned local comedians, these movers and shakers will be judged on-stage by a panel of industry veterans. But most importantly, they’ll be raising money for an important cause.
~ Read More

David Goodman

The event promises an evening of laughs featuring headliner Sebastian Maniscalco,
Jessica Holmes as host and some of Canada’s leading executives. This year’s C-suite executives are David Cynamon, Founder & Executive Chairman, K2 Pure Solutions; Cameron Fowler, Group Head, Canadian Personal & Commercial Banking at BMO Financial Group; and Mark Wiseman, Senior Managing Director & Chairman, Global Investment Committee at BlackRock Inc. Past award winners have included Peter Letko, Victor Dodig, David Kaufman, Tim Hockey, Jordy Chilcott and Kevin Sullivan who have all proven that you can be a successful Canadian executive while maintaining your sense of humour!

As the event evolves we remain focused on raising funds to support organizations that deliver vital services to young people. To date we have donated over $6,200,000 to some incredible groups who are working hard to make a real difference in the lives of young Canadians. This year the proceeds will support the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Mount Sinai Hospital.

Special thanks go out to our sponsors from me and our entire team. Humour Me would not be possible without their generous support. Please join us in supporting Sinai Health Foundation by sponsoring one of the comedians and making a donation.

See you at the show!

David Goodman
Founder, Humour Me & David Goodman Youth Community Trust
President & Chief Executive Officer, Dundee Corporation.

Sebastian Maniscalco, Guest Star

Saying what we’re all thinking has always been Sebastian Maniscalco’s specialty.

Except when he says it, it’s a whole lot funnier.

~ Read More

Sebastian Maniscalco

Sebastian Maniscalco, Guest Star

In his stand-up special Aren't You Embarrassed? which debuted on Showtime in November 2014, the sophisticated comedian with the chiseled cheekbones gives us a hilarious reality check of the world we all find ourselves living in. Continuing to bring his witheringly sarcastic and exasperated take on modern behaviour and etiquette in his second Showtime special in two years, Sebastian takes on everything from selfies that he calls “lonelies” (“Do you know how alone you have to be to have 838 photos of yourself in your bathroom?”) to online restaurant reviews (“Who’s got the time to write an 18 page essay on asparagus?”) to airport check-ins (“I’m taking out a boot…a sock…a toothpaste…does anyone know what two pounds is?”). The special has already spawned the Twitter hash tag #Aren’tYouEmbarrassed, with thousands of followers donating their take via social media on the absurdities of everyday life.

Taping the special “Aren’t You Embarrassed?” in Chicago was a homecoming of sorts for the self-proclaimed “half-Sicilian, half-Italian” who grew up in the middle-class suburbs of Chicago (“The world doesn’t match my upbringing”). Priding himself on a work ethic his father instilled in him when he began working at the age of eight, Sebastian made his first dime as an altar boy at funerals during his lunch break to contribute to the family.

Still sporting his Chicago accent despite leaving the Windy City in the early 2000s to follow his dream in Los Angeles, Sebastian began paying his comedy dues at night playing his brand of comedy in bars and bowling alleys while working as a waiter at the Four Seasons Hotel in Beverly Hills. He eventually broke into the national spotlight with a 20-city tour in support of his one-hour Comedy Central DVD Special. Yet it wasn’t until Sebastian captured the attention of award-winning actor and entertainer Vince Vaughn who selected him to be one of four featured comedians in the critically acclaimed film “Vince Vaughn’s Wild West Comedy Show” that his comedy career began to explode.

Since then the 2014 American Comedy Award nominee for Best Club Comedian has established an avid fan following via national late night television appearances on “The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson”, “Lopez Tonight”, “Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee”, “Conan” and “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno”. Sebastian is also a popular guest on such ground-breaking podcasts as “WTF with Marc Maron” in addition to starring in his own wildly popular “The Pete and Sebastian Show” podcast every Friday night.

Still enjoying the honeymoon phase with new wife and renowned L.A.-based artist Lana Gomez, Sebastian continues to develop new material at frequent shows at the Comedy Store on Sunset Boulevard. Sebastian also routinely devotes time to The COMMIT Foundation, which creates serendipity for veterans by fostering mentorship, extending professional networks and promoting familiar camaraderie for US military personnel.

At the moment Sebastian says he finds himself “happier than ever” … and he ain’t embarrassed one bit.

Jessica Holmes, Host

Jessica Holmes, a favourite on CBC’s “Royal Canadian Air Farce”, has brought the house down opening for giants such as Ellen DeGeneres, Russell Peters, Jerry Seinfeld and Oprah Winfrey.  Her hilarious and validating take on life’s challenges have audiences in stitches, and her unique knack for skewering celebrities (including Nikki Minaj, Liza Minelli and Celine Dion) launched her to the top of Canadian comedy. Her grace, bilingualism and ability to react on-the-fly make her a natural choice as an entertainer or emcee, and she has garnered rave reviews for her wellness and motivational presentations.

~ Read More

Sugar Sammy

Jessica Holmes, Host

As a performer Jessica’s productions have garnered her a Platinum Award at The WorldFest Houston International Film Festival, nominations for Gemini Awards and the prestigious Tim Sims Scholarship. She is also known for her work in films including “Welcome to Mooseport”, “Citizen Duane” and “Moonpoint”. She continues to perform comedy across the country with a recent appearance on the CBC’s Winnipeg Comedy Festival television special.

Jessica also devotes much time to helping others live well. In her wellness keynotes she mixes humour with her message about the importance of de-stressing and laughing at life’s shortcomings, and speaks with intelligence and insight on her own experiences dealing with post-partum depression, finding work-life balance and re-igniting passion. She recently received certification as a wellness coach from San Diego’s Life Purpose Institute. Her autobiographical book, “I Love Your Laugh”, was published in 2010 and she’s currently working on a follow-up book about mental health.

3 CEOs Perform a Stand-up Comedy Routine

Not only will the CEOs have to perform five minutes of original stand-up comedy, they’ll have to juggle comedy classes, everyday business and fundraising.  They will flip through their Rolodexes, strong-arm their business associates and beg for every possible dollar for Sinai Health Foundation.  After intense coaching by seasoned local comedians, these movers and shakers will be judged on-stage by a panel of industry veterans.  But, most importantly, they’ll be raising money for an important cause.

  • David Cynamon

    Founder & Executive Chairman
    K2 Pure Solutions

    READ BIO
  • Cameron Fowler

    Group Head
    Canadian Personal & Commercial Banking
    BMO Financial Group

    READ BIO
  • Mark Wiseman

    Senior Managing Director &
    Chairman, Global Investment Committee
    BlackRock Inc.

    READ BIO
close

David Cynamon

Founder & Executive Chairman
K2 Pure Solutions

David is Founder and Executive Chairman of K2 Pure Solutions which manufactures water purification and disinfection products using safe, environmentally sustainable technology.

In 1995 David acquired controlling interest in KIK Corporation and turned it into North America’s largest manufacturer of retailer and national brand consumer products in the household, personal care and over-the-counter drug categories. Under his leadership the company expanded from one to 23 manufacturing facilities employing 4,000 people, and sales climbed from $16 million to over $1.3 billion in 12 years.

KIK was twice recognized as one of Canada’s 50 Best Managed Companies and in 2002 David led the company through one of the year’s largest and most successful income fund public offerings, forming KCP Income Fund. In 2001 David was recognized as one of Canada’s Top 40 under 40, and in 2002 he was awarded the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award for the Canadian manufacturing sector. 

In May 2007 David led the sale of KCP (KIK) for $804 million. Later that year he was acknowledged by the B’nai Brith Foundation with its annual Award of Merit. In January 2013 the Right Honourable Stephen Harper awarded David the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal, a commemorative medal celebrating significant contributions and achievements by Canadians.

David is also a partner of METROPIA, one of Canada’s leading residential real estate development companies, as well as a partner with Liberty Entertainment Group, a developer and marketer of numerous landmark establishments and restaurants in North America.

David is currently Co-Chair of the board of directors at Sinai Health Foundation. He also serves on boards for several organizations including The Gerry and Nancy Pencer Brain Trust, Friends of Simon Wiesenthal Center and Bellisio Foods.

close

Cameron Fowler

Group Head
Canadian Personal & Commercial Banking
BMO Financial Group

Cameron Fowler is the Group Head, Canadian Personal & Commercial Banking. In this position he is accountable for the overall business results for the Canadian personal and commercial banking business.

This includes business and sales strategies for the bank’s Canadian banking and North American retail and small business payments businesses, and ensuring appropriate governance and risk management frameworks and controls are in place across the group. Mr. Fowler also has accountability for BMO’s digital, mobile, contact centre and physical channels across North America.

A member of the BMO Financial Group Executive Committee, Mr. Fowler joined the company in January 2009 as Executive Vice President and Head of Strategy and Marketing. Most recently Mr. Fowler was Executive Vice President, Canadian Personal & Commercial Banking, where he was responsible for the strategic direction and performance of the bank’s customer segments, physical and virtual channels and all product areas including payments and cards. He was appointed to his current role in February 2014.

Prior to joining BMO Mr. Fowler was the Managing Director & Head, Barclays Wealth International with Barclays in London (UK). He also held various senior positions within Barclays, Delano Technology Corporation and Braxton/Deloitte Consulting and served as a policy advisor for the Minister of Intergovernmental Affairs, Government of Ontario.

Mr. Fowler is Chair of the Executive Council of the Canadian Bankers Association. He is also a member of the board of directors of CivicAction and is the 2016 Honorary Chair of the Enbridge Ride to Conquer Cancer. In 2010 Mr. Fowler was named one of Canada's Top 40 Under 40. He has a BA (Honours) from Queen’s University and received his MBA from the London Business School at the University of London (UK).

close

Mark Wiseman

Senior Managing Director & Chairman, Global Investment Committee
BlackRock Inc.

Mark Wiseman is a senior advisor to the Board of Directors of CPP Investment Board (CPPIB), a role he will serve until September 5, 2016. Prior to this Mark was President and CEO of CPPIB from 2012 to 2016. He will be joining BlackRock Inc. as a senior investment leader in the fall.

Mark joined the CPP Investment Board in June 2005 as the organization’s Senior Vice President, Private Investments. He was later named Executive Vice President, Investments and responsible for managing all of the investment activities of the CPP Investment Board – public market, private and real estate investments.

Prior to joining the CPP Investment Board Mark was responsible for the private equity fund and co-investment program at the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan. Previously Mark was an officer with Harrowston Inc., a publicly-traded Canadian merchant bank, and a lawyer with Sullivan & Cromwell practicing in New York and Paris. He also served as a law clerk to Madam Justice Beverley McLachlin at the Supreme Court of Canada. From 2004 to 2007 Mark was Chairman of the Institutional Limited Partners Association, a non-profit organization committed to serving limited partner investors in the global private equity industry.

Born in Niagara Falls, Ontario, Mark holds a BA from Queen’s University and a law degree and MBA from the University of Toronto. He was also a Fulbright Scholar at Yale University where he obtained a Master of Laws degree and is a certified member of the Canadian Institute of Corporate Directors.

In 2006 Mark was named to Canada’s Top 40 Under 40. He serves on the boards of several not-for-profit organizations including the Capital Markets Institute, Mount Sinai Hospital in Toronto and Right to Play International. He was the United Way Toronto Campaign Chair for 2015 and is a past chairman of Youth Without Shelter, an emergency shelter for homeless youth.

The Judges

  • Mark Breslin

    Mark Breslin

  • Amanda Lang

    Amanda Lang

  • Jim Slotek

    Jim Slotek

Mark Breslin

CEO & Founder, Yuk Yuk’s

Mark Breslin was born and raised in Toronto, Canada, and graduated York University with a B.A. (Hons) in English Literature in 1974. Soon after graduating, Breslin became Director of Theatre and Music for the Harbourfront Corporation, an innovative cultural organization that produces events and activities at numerous venues on Toronto's waterfront.

In 1976 Breslin opened the first Yuk Yuk's comedy club in the basement of Toronto's Church Street Community Centre. Four years and many sweaty shows later, the Yuk Yuk's flagship was moved to the trendy Yorkville district. Over the years, Yuk Yuk's expanded to its present reach with 16 clubs across Canada.

In 1998 he co-founded the Humber College Comedy Program and was chosen as Artistic Director. He currently sits as Advisory Board Chairman and Producer in Residence. He is a founding board member of the Canadian Comedy Awards and was a comedy mentor for the B.C. Festival of the Arts. 

He has acted as producer, executive producer and story consultant for numerous television programs such as “Late Night with Joan Rivers”, “Yuk Yuk's - the TV Show”, “Friday Night with Ralph Benmergui” and “Kenny vs Spenny” among others. He is an author and columnist, and also worked in radio as the Program Director for “Laugh Attack” on XM Canada – the only 24-hour Canadian comedy channel.

Breslin is also a much sought-after public speaker. Selected speaking engagements have included the American Comedy Institute in NYC, the Big Bear Comedy Workshop in L.A., Association for Campus Entrepreneurs (Toronto keynote address), universities, colleges and many more.

In 2014 Breslin was named one of the 180 most influential people ever to be born and raised in Toronto.

close

Amanda Lang

Anchor, Bloomberg Television Canada
Business Journalist, Author

Award-winning business journalist Amanda Lang has been covering business in North America for 20 years. Lang anchors two weekly shows for Bloomberg Television Canada called “Bloomberg North with Amanda Lang”. Previously Lang was CBC’s senior business correspondent reporting for its flagship nightly news program, “The National”, and host of “The Exchange with Amanda Lang”, a daily business program airing on CBC News Network. For five years before that Lang hosted “The Lang and O’Leary Exchange” with Kevin O’Leary.

Lang studied architecture at the University of Manitoba before becoming a journalist. Her first job in journalism was for the Globe and Mail and, subsequently, Lang joined the Financial Post newspaper where she became the paper’s New York correspondent. In New York she made the leap to television where she first was part of the team that launched BNN and, before long, wound up at CNN as a reporter and anchor. She returned to Canada in 2002 to re-join BNN and has was with CBC from 2009 to 2015 before joining Bloomberg. Her best-selling book, “The Power of Why”, (HarperCollins, October 2012) explores the connection between curiosity and success. Lang is at work on a second book for Harper Collins to be published in 2017.

Jim Slotek

Movie Critic

Movie critic Jim Slotek has covered all branches of entertainment for the Toronto Sun since 1983.  He was an entertainment writer before that for the Ottawa Citizen where he also covered CRTC hearings.

An avid fan of comedy he moonlighted as a scriptwriter and received a Gemini nomination for comedy writing for his work on the CBC's NHL Awards (for which he wrote dialogue for, among others, Mike Myers and Eugene Levy).

He has covered Montreal's Just for Laughs comedy festival on a regular basis since 1985.  Slotek has been honoured for critical writing eight times at the Dunlop Awards, the Sun Media chain awards of excellence – with three wins and five honourable mentions.

Visual effect

Coaches

  • Peter Anthony

    Peter Anthony

  • Ian Sirota

    Ian Sirota

close

Peter Anthony

Peter Anthony is a Canadian Comedy Award winner (Breakout Artist 2008) and nominee (Best Male Stand-up 2013) originally from the small town of Pictou, Nova Scotia. He has established himself as one of the most passionate comedians in the country – constantly pushing the envelope and developing his distinctive, hilarious point of view.

Some of Peter’s credits include: Montreal’s Just for Laughs festival, CBC’s Halifax ComedyFest, Toronto’s North by Northeast (NXNE) festival, CBC Radio’s The Debaters and television appearances on The Comedy Network, MTV and CTV’s Comedy Now!

Outside of the club and festival circuit Peter also performs as a corporate entertainer. Some of his past clients include Tim Hortons, Procter & Gamble, Bell Mobility and SickKids hospital. Peter is constantly requested to MC corporate events and fundraisers and continues to enjoy meeting and interacting with business leaders from across Canada.

For more information about Peter be sure to visit peterisfunny.com.

close

Ian Sirota

Ian Sirota has shared the stage with Jim Gaffigan, Dennis Miller, Robin Williams, Dana Carvey and Jerry Seinfeld, and headlines comedy clubs across North America. Ian was a regular cast member and writer for “Comedy Inc.”, “Comedy Now!”, “Gutterball Alley” and many more. Ian has been nominated for not one, but two Gemini Awards, including Best Comedy Performance.

This sharp-tongued, take-no-prisoners comic can also blend in observational humour with a family focus, all the while mastering the audience with lightening crowd work. A perfect fit for any fundraiser or corporate event, Ian continues to be a regular contributor to Humour Me.

Visual effect

Raising Money for
Sinai Health Foundation

The proceeds of Humour Me will support the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit at Mount Sinai Hospital

Visual effect

Over $6,200,000

Previously raised for some incredible groups who are working hard to make a real difference in the lives of young Canadians including Blessings in a Backpack, CAMH, Covenant House, Dixon Hall, Eva’s Initiatives, Shriners Hospitals for Children – Canada, SickKids Foundation, Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and Trails Youth Initiatives

Visual effect

Elgin Theatre
189 Yonge Street, Toronto