Entertainment: Conquering fear with comedy: Comedian John Cotrocois talks about upcoming Laval Laughs

Born and raised in Chomedey, Laval, comedian John Cotrocois is ready to take his unique brand of humour to the Laval Laughs’ stage. Blending personal experiences with ethnic flair, Cotrocois feels as though he becomes another person when he's performing stand-up.

I had the chance to speak with the comedian about his upcoming appearances at the Laval Laughs Festival October 3-6, and here's a bit of what we discussed.

How do you feel about your upcoming shows at the Laval Laughs Festival?

I'm really excited. I grew up in Laval, so it's really special to have been asked to perform at the Ethnically Correct shows – it’s like the mother-ship is calling me home.

How did comedy start for you?

I think I've always been funny and tried to make people laugh from a young age. I entered a writing competition two years ago and they chose my story as a feature. My story ended up being funnier than I anticipated, and people told me to try it out as a stand-up routine. About a year ago, I tried it out on-stage and it snowballed… and now we're at Laval Laughs.

Do you only perform comedy in Montreal?

I've performed in New York, Toronto and Ottawa. I'm almost international (laughs).

Do you have a creative process?

I used to write everyday but now I write for specific shows. My comedy comes from personal experiences, so I live through something, I write about it, and then I talk about it.

Describe yourself in three words.

Funny, shy and a dork.

How do you conquer your shyness on-stage?

I think I disassociate from my body when I'm on-stage because, to this day, I am so terrified. I'm probably more scared of the audience than they are of me. I perform comedy because I want to break out of that shyness and push myself, but it's still very scary to me.

What's another profession besides comedy you see yourself doing?

I think I'd be a good teacher – maybe a drama teacher.

When did you first discover you were funny?

Great question! When I was in high school, one of my classmate's sisters had died, and we went to the park one day and I was doing commentary on everyone that was at the park. That made my friend die of laughter.

How would you spend your last day on earth?

Eating chicken cutlets with mashed potatoes and gravy.

What is your favourite movie?

Pretty Woman.

Who are your favourite comics?

Amy Schumer, Chelsea Handler and Fortune Feimster.

What is your ultimate goal?

I want to be working in a creative field, whether it's stand-up or writing.

What song would you have played at your funeral?

"4 My People" by Missy Elliott.

Be sure to catch John Cotrocois as well as other comics at the Ethnically Correct comedy show featured at the Laval Laughs Festival on October 3rd and 6th. You can purchase tickets at www.festivallavallaughs.ca.

Gianni Fiasche lives and breathes all that is entertainment. Since a very young age he has been a film and music enthusiast. Gianni watches and reviews over 200 films a year, attends hundreds of concerts, and loves listening to old and new music. When he isn’t doing these activities, you’ll find him spending quality time with family and friends. You can follow him on Instagram as @snobreviews.

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