/ a nerdy THANK YOU NOTE to my sketch partner
In 2011, I was accepted into the Toronto Sketch Comedy Festival with the troupe I was in at Humber’s School of Comedy. We were one of the only active sketch troupes in the 2nd year of the program and were pretty much automatically allowed in by virtue of the fact we’d produced, like, one show outside Humber and a few video sketches (which are no longer available online, and this is probably for the best.)
Ever. since. then. I have been trying so hard to get a sketch project together, and in all honesty, it was not easy for me. I’ve been trying to be self-aware and to figure out why that was. Someone once told me I was difficult to work with; but I don’t think I’m difficult to work with. I work with a lot of people all the time. They don’t seem to think I’m hard to work with. I just don’t want to write sexist or misogynistic bullshit. Does that make me hard to work with?
It’s hard to get that note though. Because that’s the kind of stuff that sticks with you, and affects the way you approach future projects. All the future sketch projects I tried to get together consisted strongly of a constant monitoring of my behaviour to make sure I wasn’t over-Brie-ing it.
I tried a thing with trio that worked for a while, but not long enough to submit an application. We had problems coordinating our schedules and eventually faded out. I tried a duo thing, where we had one show, and it was fun, but it was not my partner’s priority, so that petered out too. I also never wanted to do solo-sketch so figuring it out on my own wasn’t an option either.
I watched as people I had worked with got into the festival with other projects time and again, and thought – well, why can’t I get my shit together and work this out?
Enter Dave Lahti. My sketch-knight in shining armour with bad knees.
There’s a top 10 things I love about working in comedy, and working with Dave is definitely in the top 3. Though we’re both pretty busy people with real jobs and real relationships, and real-life stuff going on in the background, we work really well together as sketch partners. I don’t even think he minds that much when I go all ENFP with scheduling and rehearsals, and well, I guess all the normal stuff a sketch troupe needs to do to succeed that I used to be called “difficult” for wanting to try to figure out.
Dave made traveling to Boston work, even though he had a huge other engagement with a close friend and had to leave the day after our show. He still made the trip super fun and memorable.
He’s performed with me at countless Humber shows even though he’s never stepped foot on the campus. (As far as I know.)
Last year, we applied to Sketchfest & didn’t get in. We’d only had a few sets under our belt, but I panicked this would discourage him from continuing with the project. When I asked him if he still wanted to play together, he gave such a resounding “yes!,” I may have shed a tear. So we powered through; wrote more, played more, drank more tiny bottles of liquor and got to work. He even came to my wedding for Pete’s sake. (Not you, Pete.)
And now, we’ve done it. 6 years later, I finally get to play in the Toronto Sketch Comedy Festival because we’ve earned it. Because I found my sketch partner. And because we paid the $25 entry fee.
If you want to see what this sappy bullshit looks like LIVE, check us out on March 3rd and 9th. We’re real fun. I promise.