Fundraiser 55 hour soap-a-thon Christmas at Choke and Poke Toys – part of the Impulse Festival

Catch great improv anytime day or night and watch sleep-deprived improvisors give their all

christmas at choke poke

The Impulse Festival being presented by Soulpepper and National Theatre of the World is not only bringing amazing improvisational acts from around the world to Toronto, and hosting fantastic workshops for beginners and experienced improvisers alike, but it’s also the home of a 55 hour long improvised soap opera being performed for charity, Gilda’s Club of Toronto.

Improvisation is always impressive to watch. People thinking on their feet. Mistakes turned into gifts. The audience helping to drive the action. Never knowing what to expect next. But this takes improv to a whole different place.

A core group of around thirteen people are improvising for 55 hours straight. So, this means, if you’re looking for something to do at three in the morning, then you can check out some improvisation.

The 55 hours is made up of 27 episodes that last one hour and 45 minutes long that start on odd numbered hours. The whole thing started on Friday at 3pm and will wrap up on Sunday at 10pm.

You never know who will show up on stage,  visits are expected from Little Mosque on the Prarie’s Zaib Shaikh, Sean Cullen (who kind of defies description), improviser extraordinaire Colin Mochrie and George Stroumboulopoulos and who knows who else.

There is a family hour(s) playing on Sunday December 15 from 11am – 1pm where the subject matter will toned down for a family audience. So, if you’ve been looking for something to take your kids to, here’s a great opportunity to treat them to some fun stage-play and support a great cause at the same time.

If you cannot make it to the Young Centre for the Performing Arts in the Distillery District to catch the show live, then you can also watch a live streaming version of it at There is a ‘donate’ button there, so you can still support Gilda’s Club, even though you can’t drop your money in the box in person.

So, this weekend, while you’re checking out the Impulse Festival and the Christmas Market at the Distillery District take some time to drop into the 55 hr soap-a-thon.

Oh, one thing to make note of, although most of the performance takes place in the Garland Cabaret in the Young Centre for the Performing Arts, due to an unexpected scheduled power outage in the Distillery District and part of Corktown between the hours of 1am and 8:45 am on Sunday December 15th the live episodes will take place at the Comedy Bar (945 Bloor St.).

Hope to see you there!