On Comedy

Pure Research number five was led by Lois Brown and Elizabeth Pickard of The White Hag at Glen Morris Studio at the University of Toronto in Toronto, on October 11th, 12th, 13th, and 14th, 2005.

Topic of research and goals: Experimenting with the notion of using comic structures to build work. This not directed towards laughter, but towards de-constructing the structure of comedy –usually stand-up -, finding the pivotal structure, using that transformational point where something becomes funny as simply a transformational point.

General inquiries: How would we use joke structures, punchlines, and other comic structures to create points of transformation in performance?


Lead researcher: Lois Brown and Elizabeth Pickard.

Participating artists: Nikki Payne and Darryl Dinn.

Nightswimming: Brian Quirt, Naomi Campbell, and interns Andrea Romaldi and Marie Barlizo.

  Project Details – Proposal

Letter with the revisited research proposal and details.


Liz Pickard´s resume.


Lois Brown´s bio and resume.

  Application Letter

Lois Brown´s application letter.


Final report on the research project.