Community Through Comedy: Meet Adam Schwartz

Adam Schwartz calls himself the most unlikely comedian. Not because he isn’t funny; he is. According to the critics, he’s very funny. He calls himself an unlikely comedian because as a comedian with autism, his is a story rarely seen on stage.

“Autism is often ignored in stand up,” he says. “As someone with autism, I felt like I had a hard time fitting in. Comedy has given me a social life, and long-form storytelling has become one way to tell my story and find my community.”

Offering his unique perspective on the world, the self-proclaimed “autistic misfit” finds the funny in everyday life that other people might miss. Adam’s humour lends earnest charm and perspective on a personal subject matter, making him a master at subverting stereotypes. As someone who’s overcome adversity, including both autism and a speech impediment, to find success as a comedian, it’s important to Adam that he and others living with autism be seen as someone capable of more than people might think.

“We all want to fit in, we all have something to offer, and the only way we can fit in is if we find our community,” Adam says. “Being on the autism spectrum, it was important to me to present strong autistic characters on stage to create that community and help change the perspective by inspiring people to embrace the beauty of diversity.”

A regular on the Fringe circuit with roots in both Edmonton and Winnipeg, Adam looks forward to going wild at the Festival.

“I think if I were to go wild at the Fringe, and didn’t have to handbill for my shows, I would just take it all in and enjoy the beauty of the art,” he says. “I would chat with as many artists from as many different walks of life as possible. I would hang out with friends, and I would see as many shows as possible.”

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