JUNO-Winning Comedy: How Jon Dore Keeps Canada Laughing - The JUNO Awards

Whether you’ve watched his hilarious comedy series “The Jon Dore Television Show”, enjoyed his numerous appearances on Conan, or laughed along to his recent JUNO-winning comedy album A Person Who is Gingerbread there is no denying Jon Dore’s wit, impeccable delivery, and unmatched comedic talent.

At the 2023 Opening Night Awards Presented by Music Canada, this talent was celebrated when Dore proudly took home the JUNO Award for Comedy Album of the Year Presented by SiriusXM for his comedy gem A Person Who is Gingerbread released under his sister Allison Dore’s label, Howl and Roar Records.

“It has everything to do about being progressive in this new world that we live in and to be inclusive,” Dore explained when asked about the album’s unique title. “Sure we may have once said gingerbread man, but that’s not how we behave in the kitchen anymore.”

Dore’s comedy has always been influenced by the ever-changing world around him. In an interview with The JUNO Awards, he shared how current events and shifting perspectives inspire his work, “There’s this desire to want to comment on the world and express my opinion. I still have ideas. I have shows. The world is changing. I have commentary that I’d like to bring to the people.”

The pandemic was no exception to this. Like many comedians, Dore was forced to reevaluate his approach to life and comedy during the lockdowns. While COVID may not have been the central theme of his routines, its influence is present in his material. Reflecting on this period of isolation, Dore acknowledged, “I think time alone had forced me to rethink how I do things in my everyday life and in turn, my everyday life influences what I talk about.”

During this time, Dore sought out new and creative ways to continue making comedy resulting in the creation of his CBC series “Humour Resources.” The lockdown sitcom followed Dore’s character as a Human Resources Manager, deftly navigating the challenges of working from home. Each episode featured virtual HR meetings with prominent comedians such as Sarah Silverman, Nikki Glaser, and Ronny Chieng.

The series, filmed in his home in Juneau, Alaska, also showcased glimpses of Dore’s personal life, including hilarious moments with his 6-year-old daughter Emma and girlfriend Christina Love. Playfully explaining his move from Los Angeles to Alaska, Dore quipped, “I moved there because I met a human woman that I fell in love with… I don’t like Juneau, Alaska. It’s picturesque. It’s It’s beautiful. You’re right on the channel. Ocean water coming by with orcas and whales and sea otters. However, I want to go to a Gap and buy a crew neck T-shirt, and they don’t have that there.”

But regardless of where life takes him, Dore always anticipates his return trips to Canada. The success of his show, “The Jon Dore Television Show,” created a loyal fanbase in Canada that continues to support him. “Canada has always been the best place to perform,” he affirmed, emphasizing the special connection he shares with his Canadian audience. “Canada has a very special place in my heart, and I love performing in Canada more than any other place on Earth.”

Canada is also significant to Dore as it is where he first got his start in comedy. Thinking back on the early days of his career the Ottawa native recalled, “When I first started doing comedy, I was not myself at all on stage. I had this idea of who I was supposed to be. And I remember [my friend] Jason saying, “why don’t you talk the way you talk off stage when you’re on stage?” He goes, “when you’re off stage, you’re the funny, silly guy that talks about anything. You’ve given yourself so many rules when you’re on stage.””

Jon Dore Artist Photo.

Since then, Dore has definitely hit his stride, honing his craft, and becoming a well-known presence in the comedy scenes of both Canada and the U.S. Now a recognizable figure, he is often approached for advice by aspiring comedians. “When people do ask me for advice, I genuinely say, I don’t want to give you advice,” Dore joked. “The only thing I would say is, just keep doing it. If you love it, then you know what you want to do, so keep doing it. But advice can be harmful. You don’t want to sway someone creatively in any direction.”

But the JUNO winner did in fact have one piece of advice to share with fellow Canadian comedians. “We’re all going to die one day,” the once award show skeptic concluded. “That is life’s great inevitability. And you’re not avoiding it. You might think you are, but you’re not. It’s probably why you do comedy in the first place. It’s a denial of death, isn’t it? Yeah. You’re creating culture. It’s your own legacy project, isn’t it? Well, f*cking join the big legacy project, all right? Submit to the JUNOS.”

Featured image: Jon Dore in the exclusive View the VIBE x JUNOS 2023 portrait studio at the Opening Night Awards – Saturday, March 12, 2023. Photo credit: @ Nick Merzetti for View the VIBE c/o STAMINA GROUP INC. / CARAS