Traveling abroad to grow his career has made for a successful path for one Ontario comedian.
For the last two years, vlogger and stand up comedian Matt Watson has been based in Edinburgh, Scotland in the UK.
According to Watson, many aspiring Canadian comedians will either make the move to the west coast of Canada or end up bottlenecked in Toronto. He decided to take a detour and go a completely different direction, which has worked out for him.
“Many of the comedians will converge in Toronto, with the goal of getting to the U.S. by trying to obtain a green card,” Watson said. “Myself, I was thinking there must be another way to grow and develop. One of my best friends suggested I try my craft in Europe, but was even more adamant that the UK was the ultimate destination to make it.”
Watson is originally from Russell, ON a commuters town just outside Ottawa.
Growing up, he explained that with his parents being very religious they shielded him from different types of entertainment outlets, which included most comedians.
His career began in Ottawa when he decided to hit the stage at Yuk Yuk’s Comedy Club and after a few years, he became analytical about the whole comedy world. The next step was Toronto, where as Watson puts it, he was feeling a little bit stagnant before making the big move.
“I knew from my first experience that stand up comedy was something I was truly passionate about and wanted to work towards making the next step in the industry,” Watson said.
During our chat, Watson reflected on participating in amateur nights in the UK, when he was still getting acclimated to the new surroundings, and how the fans would line up an hour beforehand for these events and the ‘buzz’ before a comedy show.
“There would be excitement building before a show, with cars circling the club looking for parking and others waiting for the doors to open up,” Watson said. “I realized and it just hit me, that this is a market that really cares about their comedy. Overall, I feel that comedy is a little more mainstream in the UK.”
Recently, Watson has assisted in starting a comedy room for both amateur comedians looking to break the ice and established comedians that are looking to try out new material and test out reactions from audience members.
Watson pointed out, “that there is no one judging you and it’s a great launching point, before one of the comedians will decide to use some new jokes during a set at one of their weekend booked gigs.”
“It has created a community that wasn’t really there previously,” Watson said. “It is perfect for a newcomer or an established comedian that wants to try something out without anyone looking over your shoulder.”
Watson explains that his own style is more of a storyteller with different punch lines, mixed in throughout his tales of his life experiences.
Every summer, Watson returns to Canada and will tour his home country. This year is no different, as he has booked dates in British Columbia, Alberta, Ontario, Montreal and making his away to the east coast with stops in Nova Scotia and New Brunswick. He is pleased to be travelling coast to coast and being able to reach people Canada wide.
Matt Watson will be telling stories and jokes about his life experiences, headlining all weekend at Haddon’s Comedy Club in the lower level of Rockhead Pub at 1444 Ottawa St in Windsor, ON.
Want to in come out of the heat for an entertaining night of comedy? Watson will have shows beginning on Friday night at 9 p.m. and two shows on Saturday night at 8 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.
Tickets are $15 cash at the door if you prefer to purchase your tickets in advance click https://www.eventbrite.com/e/haddons-comedy-club-presents-matt-watson-tickets-64151961243 to have them in hand before taking in a night of comedy. See you at the shows!