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EDSS alumni clowning around on the Toronto stage

Áine Davis and Andrew Cook kept the comedy going after high school, next gig: Sketchfest

Ever wonder what happened to those kids who were always cracking jokes in class? The ones who always got in trouble for not taking anything seriously? Well, they went on to create their own comedy troupe in Toronto, one that will be performing at this year’s Sketchfest.

Áine Davis and Andrew Cook are two EDSS alumni who decided to take the plunge into the comedy scene. The two have been making each other laugh since they met in high school, and they figured the only sensible thing to do afterwards was to join a comedy act: Boys Club!

It’s a sketch show, but the unique thing is that a new show is written every two weeks.

“They range from pretty simple to very involved,” says Davis. The show is structured essentially as a collection of sketches connected by a single through line story. So in one show, they’re stuck in a mine; in another, they’re on Family Feud. Or they’re putting on their show, and a comedy team is suddenly hostage by an armed robber.

“I think the whole vibe that we want is just, ‘man that was stupid, but man that was a lot of fun,’” adds Cook. “I think that’s our main kind of through line is that, yeah you’re going to laugh, but then after you’re like ‘what was that?’”

The comedy act has made quite a splash – enough so that they will be playing at this year’s Toronto Sketch Comedy Festival in early March. Davis actually created the group with a few of her friends, but quickly brought on Cook and a few others.

“Well originally it started sort of as a bit of a joke, because it was just going to be me, I think two other girls and a guy, and it was sort of a play on how the comedy scene is predominantly men,” said Davis of the name. “And then we started thinking of who else we wanted to work with and a lot of them ended up being men, so now we’re a collective of close to half-and-half of men and women.”

“And it’s a bunch of work to change your name,” adds Cook. “So screw it, we’re Boys Club!”

Davis grew up living between Maryhill and Ireland, while Cook is an Elmira native. They met each other at EDSS on the very first day of class.

“I didn’t know anybody going into high school in Elmira. He was in my second-period class and he sat right beside me and everybody around me made fun of me except for him. We both started joking around,” she recalls.

“I made fun with you,” says Cook.

“And we just sort of stuck together.”

The two are inviting everyone to come check out their show or see them at Sketchfest, which will feature a collection of their favourite sketches, while Cook, at least, is confident that you will have a great time.

“It’s the greatest show in all of Canada and if you don’t go, you will never laugh again,” he says, quite seriously. “This is life and death! And that is my quote: Andrew Cook.”

Davis is a bit more measured. “I would say it’s sort of like a comedy dream, it’s a once-in-a-lifetime experience, it’s only something that you can see live. It doesn’t translate to video or any other media, and yeah, it’s really a special experience because we like to bring the audience into our world and let them experience what we think is funny.”

“It is full of Elmira references,” adds Cook. “It is littered – all of our sketches have Elmira references just littered in them, so come for the Easter eggs,” he says, which Davis refutes.

“There’s no Elmira references,” she says, laughing.

The Boys Club! bring their zany antics to the Comedy Bar in Toronto every other week on Monday’s. Besides that, Davis and Cook regularly perform sketch and stand-up comedy, respectively, at venues around the city. They also recommend Sketchfest as a great way to catch their show, and see a whole lot more sketch comedy around the city. Their performances for the festival will be on March 8 at 8 p.m. and on March 9 at 11 p.m., at the Comedy Bar.

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