Contributed photo One man soul-blues band Matt Hoyles will be one of the featured street performers at the White Rock 5 Corners Buskers & Comedy Festival Sept. 28.

Buskers, comedy to mix at Five Corners fest in White Rock

Daytime performances augmented by ticketed evening stand-up shows

A second annual Buskers Festival in White Rock – expanded to include a major focus on comedy – hits the Five Corners area on Saturday, Sept. 28.

Now dubbed the White Rock 5 Corners Buskers & Comedy Festival, the event, presented by the city and the White Rock BIA, combines family-friendly street performers from noon to around 4:30 p.m. from the White Rock Playhouse down to Pacific Avenue, with ticketed evening performances at various venues – aimed specifically at grown-ups – by some of the region’s funniest comedy acts.

Free street busking performances (donated contributions gratefully accepted) will include Matt Hoyles (described as a “one man soul-blues band”); precocious guitarist Hunter J (a Vancouver performer who at the grand old age of 12 is already a seasoned veteran of more than 80 shows) and his band The Jets; while the duo Mandy and Dane, will lead a trip down Memory Lane with jazz standards, Broadway musical numbers and ‘Great American Songbook’ tunes associated with artists such as Frank Sinatra and Michael Bublé.

Other musical street performers will include solo pianist Eamonn Morris, known for his rock arrangements of songs by The Beatles, Elton John and Queen; Vancouver-based singer-songwriter Norine Braun, whose original songs blend elements of blues, folk and soul; and organ-grinder Ingmar Krause, who brings his own interpretation to a playlist that ranges from Mozart to One Republic.

Adding a little spectacle to the proceedings will be students of the Vancouver Circus School, who will demonstrate juggling, stilt-walking and more at the Rainbow Crosswalk at Five Corners, while world-class magician John Ha will entertain with feats of prestidigitation.

Local acts will not be neglected, as the voices of the young women and men of Crescent Choir bring melody to Saltaire Plaza, just east of Thrift Avenue and Johnston Road; while favourites Korki and the Raincoast Clown Troupe will offer balloon-twisting, funny faces and comedy magic at the Rainbow Crosswalk.

The Drama Class (101 -15240 Thrift Ave.) is offering two options for members of the public who feel like getting in on the act. A free session of improv fun and theatre games at 4 p.m., will be led by the studio’s resident troupe of comedians; at 8 p.m. a ticketed improv jam will team the award-winning Fictionals Comedy Co. with the studio’s resident performers – and selected audience members.

While a 7 p.m. special comedy evening at Blue Frog Studios (1328 Johnston Rd.), featuring nationally-known comedy stars John Beuhler, opener Lark Miller and MC Harris Anderson, has already sold out, there are still tickets available for performances at two other venues at the same time.

Hillcrest Bakery & Deli (15231 Thrift Ave.) will feature national touring headliner and club and crowd favourite Sunee Dhaliwal (7 p.m.) while at Laura’s Coffee Corner (15259 Pacific Ave.) White Rock’s own comedian/comedy therapist Lizzie Allan, with guests, will dispense her own dry take on contemporary issues.

Islands Cafe (1237 Johnston Rd.) will feature a 9 p.m. session with Vancouver’s Charlie Demers, a nationally-touring comedian who’s also a regular on CBC Radio One’s The Debaters, while 3 Dogs Brewing (1515 Johnston Rd.) will host an after party from 9 p.m. highlighted by surprise appearances (after 11 p.m.) by some of the festival performers.

For tickets, and more information on the shows, visit www.5cornersfestival.com

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