Above: Finn Haugen assists Al Simmons in playing the banjo during Saturday’s show at the cultural centre. – Stephen Dafoe Photos
by Stephen Dafoe
The Live at the CCC concert series continued Saturday with an afternoon matinee show by Al Simmons, a prairie-born performer who has been in the business for just shy of 50 years.
Simmons’ nearly 90-minute show is a unique homage to the vaudeville performers of years gone by, something the legendary Canadian entertainer experienced first hand in the family home where his father, a magazine salesman, would often mimic the vaudeville routines he enjoyed.
Simmons has earned the name The Thomas Edison of Entertainment, and rightfully so as much of his comedy comes from the unique creations he builds to amuse and entertain his audiences.
Saturday’s Morinville show, Simmons first time in Morinville since 2011, saw multiple costume changes and a multitude of gimmick hats that were unusually tall, shot flames (not real as one young audience member told the audience), or dried socks.
Using a variety of costumes, characters, unusual homemade inventions, including an aquarium’s worth of prop fish, Simmons provided Morinvillians with a truly unique show full of puns that drew laughter and groans in equal measure.
Simmons ended his show, which ran longer than normal due to audience interaction and demands to see more of his fish, with a solid hour of meeting his fans for photos and autographs.
Illusionist Ted Outerbridge is the last of the Family Series shows and takes place Feb. 23 at 3 p.m.
Infinite Event Services is the Main Stage sponsor for the 2018-2019 season. Season Partners include St Albert Inn & Suites, Morinville News and Hunters Print and Copy.