JJ Liberman isn't exactly what you would call a conventional guy. For years, he made his living as a professional poker player.
But he was always what he describes as a “class clown,” and three-and-a-half years ago, he decided to jump into the world of stand-up comedy.
“I do about 20 shows a week,” Liberman said. “The more I do, the more confident I get.”
He's already been signed with Yuk Yuks, and, according to his bio, has opened for the Jackass crew (whom you might remember from the stunt films of several years ago) and The Trailer Park Boys, and has performed at many prestigious American comedy clubs, including New York Comedy Club, Broadway Comedy Club and Caroline’s on Broadway.
The Toronto-based comedian is the co-host of Fckonomics, a podcast sponsored by the makers of the Fleshlight sex toy.
Liberman performed at Theatre Cambrian's Late Night Comedy series this past January. He returns to Theatre Cambrian on Sept. 9 to headline a show.
Also on the docket is Richmond Hill's Marc-Anthony Sinagoga, known for recreating his life experiences as an overweight Italian going against the family grain in a melting pot society.
“He's hilarious,” Liberman said. “It's going to be an unbelievable show.”
As for himself, Liberman said he focuses on the “dirtier” side of comedy.
“It's brutally honest, my act,” Liberman said. “I'm just being honest about my life. My life has been pretty wild. You think sometimes people want honesty, and then sometimes they're taken aback. This is a lot to take in. I'm just being me.”
So does Liberman ever miss his former life as a professional poker player? Not really. He said he enjoys playing for fun now when he visits a casino, without worrying about how much money he'll make.
“To be honest with you, it's more romantic now that I'm out of it,” Liberman said.
Tickets to tomorrow night's event, which starts at 9 p.m., cost $10 in advance at $15 at the door, and are available online or at Theatre Cambrian's box office, located at 40 Eyre St.