Wednesday, September 19, 2007

More on the Nutty Professor

Calling Dr. Jones
Andy Jones teaches students the art of comedy

By Kerri Breen
The Muse

While other students will spend their semester groaning at their profs’ bad jokes, students in English 4401 will learn how to make their own comedy from veteran comedian Andy Jones.

In his version of the course, called Producing The Play, students will focus on reading, producing, and understanding comedies.

The class is set to independently produce three or four cabaret nights without assistance outside of Jones and another theatre classes who are helping with props, sets, and lighting. Some of these events will be open to the public.

“As much as possible I want to give [the class] the responsibility of putting it together and figuring it out,” said Jones, who received an honorary doctor of letters degree from Memorial in 2000.

“I divided the class into two acting companies. So everyone is in an acting company and they’ll have another job too, like publicity, or production, or management,” he said.

Jones’ 30-year career has prepared him well for the gig. Known for his work as a writer, actor, producer, and director of various projects, notably the 1980s theatre and television institution, Codco, he was also a founder of the Resource Centre For The Arts. He has won several prestigious awards and has been involved countless projects in Canada and beyond.

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Letters from Uncle Val, a series of fictional letters from Andy Jones' incomparable comedic character of the stage play An Evening with Uncle Val, is available from Rattling Books. Written and performed by the author.