Farce Goes Out With A Bang


The Farce was with the entire studio audience last night as CBC’s Air Farce Live signed off with their 15th season finale. Eleven more episodes next fall and the troupe will pack their sets, wigs and wardrobe trunks and shuffle off to TV history.
The hour-long show ended with an extended and heartening standing ovation for the seven-member troupe. Producer/performers Roger Abbott and Don Ferguson announced earlier this week that they would bring the series to a halt after one more half season.

Abbott seemed relieved it was all over after a grueling, 22-episode, all live schedule. “We wanted to go out while the news still made the ‘above the fold,’ not as three lines buried in the back of the newspaper,” he said after the show. He and Ferguson had pretty much always planned to bow out this spring after signing a three year deal in 2005. The 11 final episodes this fall gives them a well deserved victory lap.
The performers seemed genuinely moved by the applause on what had to be an emotional night. Abbott called it “historic,” but he was referring to the live blast from the fabled chicken cannon, a tricky effects segment taped in previous years. The main target last night were goalie goons Patrick Roy and his equally hot-headed son Jonathan, with pucks, sour grapes and an octopus part of the cannon fodder; police are still searching for the squid out on John St.
Here are some photos of the Farce season farewell:

The Farce’s unflappable stage director Pat McDonald preps a scene. “Mr. Deadpan” got dragged before the cameras and into several sketches over the years.
Radiant Luba Goy, who did a skit last night before her makeup mirror launching her post series project ‘Rent A Luba.”
After the taping, cast member Alan Park joins long-time Farce publicist David McCaughna and former Toronto Star TV critic Jim Bawden. Toronto Sun Farce fans TV columnist Bill Harris and entertainment editor Bill Pierce were also in the house for the finale. There’s still some talk about spinning Farce off with the next generation of troupers, which seems like a logical step to me.
Young Farce fans Daniel Brioux and Erik Nicholls pose in front of the fabled chicken cannon. It truly reeks after that thing goes off, especially after it has been stuffed with ketchup, beer and octopus.
Jessica Holmes makes some last minute adjustments before goofing on CTV’s “alternate alternate” news anchor Lisa Laflamme.

Costello, Abbott, Costello Jr. Abbott still has his eye brows penciled in from that last sketch. I could use a little wardrobe and makeup.

On the way out, Dan and Erik check out the CBC bulletin board posted outside the ground floor elevator. “Employees first!” it says. “Here’s the latest!” The message was blank. Guess nothing happened this week.

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