The Sunday Service is Ryan Beil, Caitlin Howden, Kevin Lee, Aaron Read, Taz VanRassel, and our musical director, Emmett Hall.
With over 20 Canadian Comedy Award Nominations, a CCA Best improve Troupe Award in 2012, and international recognition, The Sunday Service present to audiences across North America a fast paced and singular take on traditional long form.
Favoring discovery over structure, the group builds, demolishes, and builds again an absurd patchwork of scenes and stories. Using strong narratives and character work to ground their set, the group dips in and out of meta-comedy, rock opera, word play and even slapstick shtick.
Their high energy and commitment to comedy carries the audience through a kaleidoscopic trip; watching scenes barrel into tangents and stories smash together to create a piece that holds the collective spirit to its highest regard, and puts a big ol’ goofy shoe down to show everyone they’re not so serious!
“Vancouver has a top-notch comedy scene that doesn’t get the attention it deserves, so it’s great to see the always-entertaining Sunday Service getting national recognition.”
– Gregor Robertson, Mayor of Vancouver. (who proclaimed Nov. 18, 2011 Sunday Service Day)
“Their live show is amazing, their podcast is hilarious, The Sunday Service is all that’s right and true about comedy in this country. Simply put, I wish I was in The Sunday Service. Please don’t tell Picnicface.”
– Andy Bush, Picnicface
“The Sunday Service transforms comedy into a religion at the Hennessey Dining Lounge.”
– Leszek Apouchtine, Where Magazine
The Sunday Service: HILARI-YES!
Taz VanRassel has been committed to a life of improvisation and comedic performance since 1995 when competing in the Canadian Improv Games.Since then he has gone on to perform with four time Canadian Comedy Award nominees for best improv troupe Urban Improv, as well as securing a mainstage performer position at Vancouver TheatreSports League for the past 7 years.
His biggest accomplishment to date is co-founding the Sunday Service in 2005 and watching it grow into a staple of Vancouver’s comedy scene, culminating in national recognition when they won best improv troupe in Canada in 2012.
Taz has collaborated and performed with the likes of Ryan Stiles (the Drew Carey show), Colin Mochrie (Who’s line is it anyway), David Cross (Arrested Development), Bob Odenkirk (Breaking Bad), Will Sasso (Mad TV), Scott Adsit (30 Rock), Sean Cullen (Last Comic Standing) Paul F Tompkins (Mr. Show) and Oscar Nunez (the Office[US]).
Follow Taz on Twitter: @Tazvanrassel
Ryan Beil is an award winning actor and comedian born and raised in Vancouver, BC. He holds a BFA in acting from The University of British Columbia. Watch for him in the Upcoming films “Focus” and “Big Eyes” with the latter directed by Tim Burton. He produces Rapp Battlez Wezt Coazt and is the President of Baseball Operations at Little Mountain Gallery. As far as Improv is concerned, he’s got that shit covered too. Ryan has performed Improv-comedy in Berlin, Edmonton, Toronto, Seattle, Chicago, St. Louis, Bellingham, Portland, Winnipeg, Regina, Saskatoon, and many other places!
Follow Ryan on Twitter: @ryanbeil
Aaron Read is an improvisor, musician, and visual artist working out of Vancouver BC. His primary contribution is as active member of The Sunday Service. Previous improv experience includes being a founding member of CCA nominated AKA Improv, a main stage player at Vancouver Theatre Sports League and providing live instrumentation for Sister Act Improv. A few notable moments in the improvisor’s young career include winning best improv troupe with The Sunday Service in 2012, a nomination in 2007 for best improv troupe with AKA improv at the age of 18, and performing alongside the likes of Bob Odenkirk (Mr. Show), Paul F. Tompkins (Mr. Show), and Mark Chavez (The Pajama Men). With over 9 years of improv experience including training from Alistair Cook (Instant Theatre), David Razowsky (Second City) and Lee White (Crumbs) Aaron has cemented himself as a creative and collaborative force in the improv world.
Follow Aaron on Twitter: @teenfarts
Caitlin has been studying and performing improv for the last fourteen years. She has toured festivals across Canada, performing with some of improv’s ﬁnest including The Crumbs (Winnipeg), General Fools (Regina), Rapid Fire (Edmonton), Second City (Toronto and Chicago), Dad’s Garage (Atlanta), The Improfessionals (Paris) and Upfront (Seattle). Recently her teaching has brought her to multiple times to Poland and Paris. She is also the co creator of Ghost Jail Theatre (Montreal, Toronto, Winnipeg, Vancouver).
Caitlin wrote and costarred in four critically acclaimed main stage revues at The Second City (Toronto). With a total of thirteen Canadian Comedy Award nominations in four years, four of them are for Best Female Improviser.
Last year, her TIFF debut “Crackin’ Down Hard”, directed by Mike Clattenburg (Trailer Park Boys), was chosen as one of the Top Ten Shorts. You can hear her on CBC radio’s This Is That as well as Same Time Next Week, a new show with with Ryan Beil and Charlie Demers.
Follow Caitlin on Twitter: @caitlinhowden
Kevin Lee is an improvisor, writer and actor from Vancouver, B.C. He’s been performing weekly improv shows as a member of The Sunday Service since 2006. Before that, he co-created the live mixed-media comedy show “The Living Room” with fellow comedian Sean Devlin. It was performed at the Vancouver International Comedy Festival to much (some? an?) acclaim. Kevin continues to perform stand-up, sketch and improv at many venues around Vancouver, including Vancouver TheatreSports, and Bronx Cheer. Frequently collaborating with other Vancouver-based comedians and writers, he expects to continue being an active contributor to Vancouver’s ever-expanding comedy scene.
Follow Kevin on Twitter: @therealkevinlee
Emmett Hall (Musical director)
Be sure to find your daily inspiration via his derisive adages: lauphorisms.tumblr.com
Follow Emmett on Twitter: @IAmEmmettHall
Mark Chavez (The Pajama Men)
Mark Chavez hails from Albuquerque New Mexico and is a member of the world renowned comedy sketch duo The Pajama Men. When he isn’t touring the world, playing sold out shows to rave reviews, he can often be found sitting in with The Serv throughout the year.
Craig Anderson Moved to Toronto!
Craig Anderson has been creating and performing comedy across North America for the past 7 years. In addition to his work with The Sunday Service, Craig performs with Ghost Jail Theatre, Vancouver Theatresports League, and the sketch group “Bronx Cheer” with whom he produced “The Hero Show” and “Ladies and Gentlemen, Comedy”. As an actor, Craig has appeared in several sexy teen dramas and cable sci-fi shows. He also produced and starred in the webseries “With Friends Like These” and the Leo Award Nominated “Mental Beast”. Craig is currently living in Toronto, and can be seen performing regularly with The Bad Dog Theatre Co, and hosting Bronx Cheer’s monthly show “Adult Contemporary.”
Follow Craig on Twitter: @amillioncraigs