153,000 drawn to Toronto laff fest

Event expanded to five days, upped star power

TORONTO — Just for Laughs’ more compact Toronto festival wrapped Sunday, attracting 153,000 comedy fans to an array of showcases.

For its second annual edition, JFL expanded to five days and upped the star power. Canuck and SNL alum Martin Short “co-hosted” Thursday’s kick-off gala with his alter egos Ed Grimley and movie critic Jiminy Glick.

“Seinfeld’s” Jason Alexander performed a Broadway medley as host of Friday’s gala, which also featured Robert Schimmel, Kevin Hart and Jeff Ross.

Incoming “Late Night” host Jimmy Fallon brought Saturday’s gala house down with impressions of famous comedians, while ventriloquist Jeff Dunham sold out Toronto’s legendary Massey Hall.

Other JFL Toronto highlights included a taping of “The All-Star Ethnic Show,” featuring Jo Koy, Sugar Sammy and Gina Yashere and airing this fall on pubcaster CBC. Canuck stand-ups and “Last Comic Standing” alums Debra DiGiovanni and Tyler Hawkins killed at the “Best of Homegrown Comic Competition,” hosted by Robinson at Second City Toronto.

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