Ed Hill returns to Kelowna Fringe together with his new particular

Comedian Ed Hill is set to take the stage at the Kelowna Fringe festival in September.

Hill was born in Taiwan, but grew up in Vancouver, B.C. He’s the first Taiwanese-Canadian comedian to get a full-length comedy special with Comedy Dynamics. The special –Candy and Smiley– received critical acclaim, making the top 15 comedy specials of 2021 by Paste Magazine, and NPR radio’s “Best of 2021” list. The special can be found online or streaming on Apple TV and Amazon Prime. Hill’s performance in Kelowna will be part of his new special Stupid Ed.

“I am not a blue comic; I am not a setup–punch type of guy. I’m not a storyteller. I don’t fit into those categories. But what I am is very introspective,” said Hill.

Hill’s comedy is unlike most comedians that are performing. He goes “inside rather than outside,” which was a decision he made early in his career following the advice of his late-great mentor, Louie Anderson.

“[Louie] came to me early on and let me know “talk about you—talk about your family. These are the things that will transcend time and barriers because we all have families and we all have struggles,” said Hill.

Hill measures his crowd not strictly by their laughs, but by their silence, too. He reflected on a time when he watched a colleague who had a successful set in New York City. The comic made the audience laugh, but the comic was also able to get them to go quiet again, so they wouldn’t miss a word.

He also measures his success in how people interact with him.

“People coming up to you, letting you know they have similar experiences in their lives, or people walking away just remembering what the moment felt like for them. That’s the essence I’m trying to give to people,” said hill.

The festival won’t be Hill’s first outing in Kelowna. In fact, the comic often comes through every six months or so, but he expects this time to be different.

“A comedy club performance can be different than the theater performance, because they only give you 45 minutes compared to an hour,” said Hill.

The title of Ed’s show –Stupid Ed– is also introspective. Hill recalled how the name came to him based on a comment from his dad. While perusing family photo albums of Hill as a kid, his dad glanced over his shoulder.

“And he just goes “stupid kid” and walks away,” said Hill with a laugh.

Rather than take offence at the comment, Hill heard it differently.

“I know the reason why that was such a touching moment for me, because I think that was acceptance,” said Hill.

The comic’s set is filled with humorous introspective insights into his own life.

Hill will perform on Sep. 1–3 at the Mary Irwin Theatre in Kelowna. For tickets and showtimes, visit the festival’s website.

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