The Best Medicine? | Metro News

Patient Commando gets the blood pumping with a big dose of its laughter therapy program. The non-profit group helps support those with chronic disease, in severe pain.

They’re not sick jokes, but rather jokes for the sick.

A new, non-profit company called Patient Commando is making sure that stories about health struggles — both sad and funny — get told and listened to. Laughter therapy has long been known as a powerful tool to release tension and get the blood pumping more efficiently.

In Patient Commando’s promotional video, a comedic actor spoofs everyone’s worst hospital nightmare.

Donning his hat, socks and shoes, he tries to make a dignified exit, but his hospital gown isn’t done up and his bare bum jiggles hilariously for all to see.

Comic relief — through laugh therapy and live theatre shows — is one of the ways that Patient Commando helps support people who have chronic disease, terminal disease or are suffering from bereavement.

The company also encourages people to tell their stories. “I’m interested in the expression of the story,” says Toronto founder of Patient Commando Zal Press.

“Listen to the patient voice.”

Press himself has struggled with the painful symptoms of Crohn’s disease, an inflammation of the intestines, for 30 years. “It feels [...] continue the story

The Kaizen Crossroad: I Laughed at Cancer

When work entails promoting a comedic, slightly-controversial, theatrical event called Cancer Can’t Dance Like This, and you have yet to see it, one can’t help but feel some trepidation.

Once again Jillian Rodak shines a spotlight on her experience on working with Patient Commando and her review of a night that pulled back the curtains on Daniel Stolfi’s experience with the big C.

We invite you to read Jillian’s latest post here

http://kaizencrossroad.blogspot.com/2011/05/i-laughed-at-cancer.html

Patient Commando proves laughter the best medicine | InsideToronto.com

Did you hear the one about the young guy with cancer?

How about the punchline about the middle-aged man battling Crohn’s disease for the last three decades?

Obviously, there is nothing funny about being diagnosed with a life-threatening or debilitating illness.

But people often encounter humour as they navigate their health care journeys, including sharing a camaraderie among other patients. And research has shown laughter really can be the best medicine.

Now, North York resident Zal Press is giving a voice to sick people through his new entertainment company called Patient Commando.

“Patient Commando uses public speaking, humour therapy workshops and live theatre to present compelling stories from the patient perspective,” a statement about the company said.

“It is the first initiative of its kind in Canada, producing ‘patient storytelling entertainment’ to create an environment of understanding – most often through the use of humour.”

Live performances, which raise money for charities, are one-man shows featuring patients using a combination of comedy and the real-life heartbreak of facing a serious illness to tell their stories.

Patient Commando’s inaugural production was held Thursday, May 12 at Toronto’s Glenn Gould Studio.

It featured Bloor West Village comedian, actor and cancer survivor Daniel Stolfi performing Cancer Can’t Dance Like This. The performance [...] continue the story