Malik Elassal is a Lebanese Canadian stand-up comedian and actor. We spoke with him to find out more about his style, influences and projects.
How would you describe your comedy style?
My comedy is quite personal but universal as well I think, sort of zoomed in-zoomed out. It’s about the people close to me and the things I find important. My second answer is my comedy style is buck wild.
Who are some of your influences?
Kid Cudi, Dave Merheje, My family
Who was your favourite comedian growing up?
Basically, everyone I liked growing up is now cancelled in some way or another so I’ll say my cousin Wesam. He would get up and put on a show during family get-togethers. He would be doing impressions, backflips, everything, and as a kid seeing how he made everyone laugh made me wanna light people up that way. To this day I would say it should’ve been him.
Who is your favourite comedian now?
What is your pre-show ritual?
There’s a prayer I always say to myself,
رَبِّ اشْرَحْ لِي صَدْرِي وَيَسِّرْ لِي أَمْرِي وَاحْلُلْ عُقْدَةً مِّن لِّسَانِي يَفْقَهُوا قَوْلِي
“Lord, lift up my heart and ease my task for me. Remove the impediment from my tongue so that they may understand my speech.”
I believe it was what Moses said before facing the Pharoah but it feels like it applies to stand-up as well. But you know…I’ll also do calve raises sometimes.
What is your favourite place you have performed? Why?
The Just For Laughs festival in Montreal. It had always been a dream of mine to go there.
What is your favourite bit you have written and why were you proud of it?
One of my bits involves trying to get people to convert to Islam in the middle of my set and I’m proud of it because it has worked.
What is your favourite medium for listening or finding new comics/comedians?
I like listening to people’s albums but seeing people live in a club is the best, in my opinion. There’s really nothing like it.
Tell us a joke about your city.
If you don’t like the weather in Calgary just wait 10 minutes *finger guns*
Do you have anything to promote right now?
I have a New Wave set coming out on CBC gem in the new year.
Where can we follow you?
PAY IT FORWARD: Who is another local comic/comedian we should know about?
Maddy Kelly is a wonderful comedian that I love watching so everyone should check her out.