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Toronto, Ontario, Canada
|Alma mater||York University|
|Occupation||entrepreneur, comedian, actor|
|Known for||Yuk Yuk's comedy clubs|
Mark Breslin, CM is a Canadian entrepreneur, stand-up comedian and actor best known for being the co-founder (along with Joel Axler) of Yuk Yuk's, the largest chain of comedy clubs in Canada. On December 29, 2017, he was appointed a Member of the Order of Canada by Her Excellency the Right Honourable Julie Payette, Governor General of Canada.
Breslin graduated from York University with a B.A. Honours in English Literature. Soon after graduating, he became Director of Theatre and Music for Harbourfront Corporation, an innovative cultural organization which produces events and activities at numerous venues on Toronto's waterfront. He is a founding member of the Canadian Comedy Awards, and was a comedy mentor for the B.C. Festival of the Arts.
In 1976, Breslin and his collaborator Joel Axler opened the first Yuk Yuk's, in the basement of Toronto's Church Street Community Centre. Four years and many sweaty shows later, Breslin and Axler moved the Yuk Yuk's flagship to 1280 Bay Street in the trendy Yorkville district. Over the next few decades, Yuk Yuk's would expand its presence nationally and internationally. Presently, there are 14 clubs across Canada.
Breslin made several guest appearances in the Robocop: The Series television series. He also appeared in an episode of Kenny Vs Spenny. His most recent film credit was as "Bob" in the movie Confessions of a Porn Addict.
Breslin has produced such television programs as The Late Show with Joan Rivers for Fox Broadcasting, Yuk Yuk's - the TV show for CBC TV and Mondo Taboo, two pay-per-view specials for The Movie Network and The Yuk Yuk’s Great Canadian Laugh Off annual TV special for The Comedy Network, which he also hosts. He was executive producer on Friday Night with Ralph Benmergui for CBC TV and Yuk Yuk's 25th Anniversary Special for the Comedy Network. He was also a story consultant for the first two seasons of Kenny vs Spenny for CBC TV and Showcase and an associate producer of Petal Pushers on HGTV.
In addition to television, Breslin has also worked in radio, developing "Live from Yuk Yuk's", a daily radio show syndicated by the Telemedia Radio Network on over 80 stations coast to coast. Breslin was the program director and an on-air personality on the XM Satellite Radio channel Laugh Attack, which features predominantly Canadian comedy and is Canada's only 24-hour Canadian comedy channel. He hosted a call-in shows on Q107 and CFRB and has appeared as a featured panelist on multiple episodes of ROB TV's The ArtS Panel and Global Television's Grumps. He has written four books so far - "Zen and Now" (Somerville House), a popular Brian Mulroney joke book "Son of a Meech" (Random House), and an autobiographical novel, "Control Freaked" (Insomniac Press). Mark also wrote and narrated two 5-CD audio book, published by Harper Collins, titled "Yuk Yuk’s Guide to Canadian Stand-Up" and "Rarities and Road Warriors". Add to this, innumerable book reviews for The Globe and Mail, The Toronto Star and The Quill and Quire, and his monthly comedy column, now in its tenth year, for the Village Post Magazine. He also writes a weekly movie review column alongside Richard Crouse in the Metro newspaper.
Breslin is a much sought-after public speaker. Selected speaking engagements have included the American Comedy Institute in NYC, the Big Bear Comedy Workshop in L.A., Association for Campus Entrepreneurs (Toronto keynote address), York University Cultural Studies Program, York University Department of Philosophy, Toronto Jewish Film Society, Variety Club of Toronto, MENSA Society of Canada, Glendon College Alumni Association, among others.
In 2014, Breslin was included in the Toronto Star's list of 180 most influential people to come out of Toronto.
In the 2013 documentary, "When Jews Were Funny," Breslin said Jews were "bred into intelligence" due to the Holocaust.
- "Mark Breslin on the top up-and-coming comedic minds in Toronto". Post City Toronto. March 31, 2017. Retrieved 5 April 2017.