“...thousands of spectators who laughed, chuckled, chortled and guffawed reemphasized how entertaining you really are...”

—The Entire Staff
The Vancouver Comedy Festival


Fall 1981, a young David Aiken, putting away the laundry is momentarily distracted. Three bundles of socks leap into his hands for a dual with Newton’s Law of Gravity. The delicious tension furnished by this tenuous relationship and Dave’s insatiable love of being the centre of attention provided a natural springboard for a budding career as a comic performer.

Thousands of busking performances in his home town of Ottawa earned Dave of some serious chops and also allowed him to develop his Checkerboard Guy persona. Known as an infectious bundle of energy wrapped by a dynamite skill set that consistently generated guffaws from spectators, he not only caught the attention of producers across Canada, but was also invited to perform for the prime minister of Canada.

Canadian tours in the late 80s lead to international tours and awards in the 90s. North America, Australia, Europe and Asia all became familiar haunts as festival producers the world over came knocking and cbg was happy to oblige. Japan called so often that ‘Checker-san’ ended up learning to do his entire performance in Japanese and also learned that language didn’t need to be a barrier for international language of funny.

The Checkerboard Guy splits his time between working for corporate clients, cruise lines, performing arts centres and international festivals. No matter where the audience, Dave’s love of comedic engagement is his passport to his ongoing adventure of gut-busting laughter.