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The Comic's Comic Presents Last Things First

Last Things First asks comedians and funny performers about the historic lasts and firsts in their lives as their comedy careers have blossomed.
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The Comic's Comic Presents Last Things First
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May 16, 2022

Bruce McCulloch is a Canadian actor, writer, and director best known as one of the five Kids in the Hall — who came back in a big way in 2022 — their sixth season of sketch comedy premiered May 13 on Amazon Prime Video, with a documentary about them, Kids in the Hall: Comedy Punks, out the following week. As a solo act, McCulloch has written a book (“Let’s Start A Riot”), released two albums, Shame-based Man and The Drunk Baby Project, and created the sitcom Carpoolers for ABC. He’s also directed movies such as Superstar and Stealing Harvard, as well as shows such as Brooklyn Nine-Nine, Schitt’s Creek, and Trailer Park Boys, and he has shepherded a new Canadian sketch comedy group, TallBoyz, to TV on CBC and Fuse. His latest one-man show, “Tales of Bravery and Stupidity,” will make its off-Broadway debut in June 2022 at SoHo Playhouse. McCulloch invited me to his hotel room to talk about the makings of The Kids In The Hall, and his perspective on it all. 

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

May 9, 2022

Addie Weyrich got an early jump on her comedy career, dropping out of NYU when the teenager’s work with the likes of the Upright Citizens Brigade, Improv Everywhere and Buzzfeed were taking off. She scored roles on episodes of Crashing on HBO, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel on Amazon, and Your Pretty Face Is Going To Hell on Adult Swim, and she began appearing in national TV commercials. That jumpstart gave her the juice to go Hollywood, where she co-hosts a live comedy showcase, “Everything’s Great,” with Nick Kocher and Demi Adejuyigbe every month at Dynasty Typewriter. In 2022, Addie plays a wiccan high-schooler in the Hulu romcom, Crush, and co-stars in the film, Mack & Rita, starring Diane Keaton. She sat down with me in Los Angeles to talk about her career, sharing her life on social media via Instagram Stories, hosting an impromptu election party in a gas station parking lot, martial arts and more.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

May 2, 2022

Karen Chee is a writer and performer for Late Night with Seth Meyers. She has previously written for the Golden Globes and the Amazon Prime Video special, Yearly Departed, has developed TV pilots for Netflix and Comedy Central, and has published humor pieces in The New Yorker and McSweeney’s. All before the age of 27. No wonder she made Variety’s “Power of Young Hollywood” list as well as Forbes “30 Under 30.” Chee sat down with me to talk about getting an early start on her comedy career, how Twitter did or didn’t help her get her dream gig, and how she has managed supporting her grandparents in Korea during the pandemic while still writing remotely for Late Night, and picking up a new gig writing for Pachinko on Apple TV+.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Apr 25, 2022

Alison Leiby is a writer and comedian who started her own showcase at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in New York City called It’s A Long Story. Leiby’s story is still being told. In TV, it has included late-night writing on staff for Comedy Central’s The President Show, and The Opposition with Jordan Klepper, as well as The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel. She’s written jokes for Triumph the Insult Comic Dog, published essays in McSweeney’s, Cosmo, Marie Claire and The New York Times. And her initial work punching up jokes for Broad City has led to a lengthy working relationship with Ilana Glazer. Leiby executive-produced Glazer's Comedy Time Capsule and her Amazon Prime Video stand-up special, The Planet is Burning. Glazer now is presenting Leiby in her first Off Broadway production of Alison Leiby: Oh God, A Show About Abortion, which begins previews April 25, 2022, at the Cherry Lane Theatre in Manhattan for a limited six-week run. Leiby sat with me to talk about how her comedy and writing career evolved from late-night TV to prestige comedy to her own very personal and politically active work.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Apr 18, 2022

Irene Tu is a Los Angeles-based stand-up comedian, actor, and writer. After moving to Berkeley from Chicago, she quickly established herself in the Bay Area comedy scene. The San Francisco Chronicle singled her out as an “artist on the brink of fame,” while other outlets have named her to the lists of “Bay Area’s 11 Best Stand Up Comedians,” “Women to Watch” and “Comedians You Should and Will Know in 2019.” She has performed on Comedy Central, LOGO, Starz, and Viceland, and has opened on the road for comedians such as Patton Oswalt, Maria Bamford, and most recently, Taylor Tomlinson. Tu released her debut album in March 2022 via Blonde Medicine — We’re Done Now is a hilarious 15-track collection of stories about coming out and dating, observations about food, dictators, and diva cups, as well as morbid musings about surviving the apocalypse. Proving she can put up with anything, she sat down with me outside in the cold for a quick chat about her album and her career.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Apr 12, 2022

Gilbert Gottfried invited me into his home in 2017 so he could remind us what kind of comedian he was before 2001, why he decided to launch into “The Aristocrats” at the Friars Club Roast of Hugh Hefner for Comedy Central, and how it completely changed the arc of his career. But first, listen to the version of the joke he recorded for his 2005 special, "Dirty Jokes."

This episode originally aired in 2017 as part of "On Second Thought," a series I did for Laughly, an app that no longer exists.

Apr 11, 2022

Toronto has a rich history of producing great sketch comedy performers and troupes that have crossed over in the United States. Among the TV series: SCTV. Bizzare. The Kids in the Hall. Baroness Von Sketch Show. And now the foursome from the sketch group, TallBoyz II Men, who broke out quickly from the 2018 Toronto Sketch Comedy Festival, premiering their own TV show on the CBC in 2019. TallBoyz — created by and starring Guled Abdi, Vance Banzo, Tim Blair and Franco Nguyen, and brought to TV by showrunner, director and Kid In the Hall Bruce McCulloch — not only won multiple Canadian Screen Awards in 2022. They also hosted the ceremony; and already celebrating as their show got picked up in the U.S. The first season of TallBoyz premiered on Fuse in March 2022, with seasons two and three to air later in the year. Guled and Franco sat down with me to talk about their rapid rise in the business and what it’s like to make sketch comedy with one of the greats.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Apr 4, 2022

Katie Hannigan taught preschoolers and performed as a mime before embarking on a full-time career as a stand-up comedian. So far, so good. Hannigan was a New Face at Just For Laughs Montreal, made her late-night TV debut on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert soon after. Hannigan has appeared on Comedy Central, MTV and The Travel Channel, developed a game show for the History Channel, and wrote a horror-comedy series for SnapChat. She currently co-hosts a podcast with comedian Sarah Tollemache, Lady Journey, and in March 2022, she released her debut comedy album, “Feeling of Emptiness.” Hannigan spoke with me about those past experiences, as well as studying in Russia, pretending she’s a garden statue, and how she’s the captain of her own ship steering her comedy career.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Mar 28, 2022

Matt McCarthy began his comedy career as the Fordham Ram mascot, but quickly carved out a spot for himself in New York City’s stand-up scene, scoring TV credits with Comedy Central on both Live at Gotham and John Oliver’s New York Stand Up Show. You may recognize him from his previous sketch comedy work on Conan, or from his many TV commercials, including a long-running stint as “the cable guy” one-upped by Verizon Fios, and more recently in national campaigns for Progressive and Planet Fitness. He’s also performed as recurring characters on both Adam Ruins Everything and Corporate. For a couple of years, McCarthy combined his comedy and wrestling fandom to write plot lines for the WWE. But it’s his personal and professional relationship with Pete Holmes that’s paid lasting dividends, from their early DIY videos that got them on TV during the Super Bowl, to a talk show on TBS, and they’re now reunited in 2022 on, How We Roll, the new CBS sitcom based on the real life of professional bowler Tom Smallwood. Matt joined me over Zoom to talk about his life and career, with plenty of funny stories about TV advertising, professional wrestling and carving out a separate niche for himself on TikTok as the ultimate film collector.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Mar 21, 2022

Ben Rosenfeld was born in the city formerly known as Leningrad, but came to Connecticut as a toddler with his parents as the Soviet Union began to break apart. His comedy reflects his upbringing as a Russian Jewish immigrant in America. A graduate of Rutgers University, Ben entered a Ph.D. program in neuroeconomics at CalTech before realizing that his career path was meant for comedy instead. His TV credits include Laughs on FOX, as well as The Nick Cannon Show, and he has released multiple comedy albums since 2012: “Neuro Comedy,” “The Russian Optimist,” “The United States of Russia” and “Don’t Shake Your Miracle.” Ben also has published an illustrated coffee table book, “Russian Optimism: Dark Nursery Rhymes To Cheer You Right Up.” That optimism seemed needed more in 2022 than even in 2016, ever since Russia invaded the Ukraine. Ben has tried to find jokes in that, too, producing daily TikTok videos to his more than 270,000 followers. He joined me over Zoom to talk about his comedy career, his Russian heritage, and how he has had to adapt to audiences as the geopolitics have changed.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Mar 14, 2022

Colin Mochrie is one of the most successful and best-known improvisational comedians in the world, having performed on several hundred episodes of Whose Line Is It Anyway? since 1991, first broadcast in the UK, then later here in America on ABC, ABC Family and since 2013 on The CW. Born in Scotland and raised in Canada, Mochrie learned his theater and comedy skills at Vancouver TheatreSports and Second City Toronto. His face is famous in Canada, having appeared in countless TV commercials and series over the years. In 2022, Mochrie celebrates 20 years of touring North America in a two-man improv production with Whose Line co-star Brad Sherwood. He also tours with hypnotist Asad Mecci in a show called HYPROV. He sat down with me to talk about his career, as well as his most recent appearance on Amazon Prime Video’s Last One Laughing, competing against some of Canada’s other great comedy stars. And he had me laughing quite a lot.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Mar 7, 2022

Ray Ellin has been the host with the most for most of his adult life. He started by MC’ing stand-up shows at comedy clubs in New York City. In the late 2000s, he launched a live interactive talk show, LateNet with Ray Ellin, first for his own website, DailyComedy.com, and later licensing it to air on AOL. Ellin also became the host for the official off-Broadway live edition of The Gong Show, receiving Chuck Barris’s blessing to do so. And before the pandemic, Ellin co-created, hosted and executive-produced a topical stand-up showcase for Comedy Central, This Week at the Comedy Cellar. Perhaps most uniquely, though, Ellin has spent the better part of a decade living almost half of the time in Aruba, where he has produced and hosted stand-up shows for locals and tourists alike on the Caribbean island as Aruba Ray. I’ve experienced Aruba Ray’s for myself, and got Ellin to tell me all about how he wound up a fixture on a tropical island and more.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Feb 28, 2022

From the outside looking in, Eleanor Conway had a pretty good gig going for herself as a music journalist for Virgin Mobile, interviewing the biggest pop stars and singers on the planet. But she was miserable on the inside, and Conway had to change her life inside out. She has since sobered up and lived to joke about it, taking her debut show about sex, addiction and dating, “Walk of Shame,” to more than 10 countries. Conway followed that up with her show, “You May Recognize Me From Tinder.” But her 2021 show, “Vaxxed & Waxxed,” is the first that Conway has brought to the United States, performing in New York City for the 2022 Frigid Festival. Conway sat down with me between shows to talk about her life and career.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Feb 21, 2022

Blair Socci played Division I college volleyball and went to grad school for creative writing before finding her voice through stand-up comedy. Her first break came in 2016 co-starring in the MTV sketch show, Ladylike. After becoming a New Face at Just For Laughs, Socci made her way back to California, where she became the co-host for The Trevor Moore Show on Comedy Central Digital, a frequent touring partner for Ron Funches, and made her late-night TV debut telling jokes on The Late Late Show with James Corden. In 2022, she has lots of voiceover work in the can already, including gigs on Netflix’s Q Force and Adult Swim’s upcoming Aqua Teen Hunger Force movie. She also co-stars in the voice cast of Comedy Central’s new topical show Fairview, and Socci spoke to me about how she has found her way thus far.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Feb 14, 2022

R.J. Fried turned down the National Hockey League first to pursue his college education, and then a career in comedy. So far, so good. Fried is an Emmy-nominated and WGA Award-winning comedy writer, producer, and performer whose credits have included Triumph's Election Special 2016, (Hulu), Maya & Marty (NBC), Onion Sportsdome (Comedy Central), The Last Word with Lawrence O'Donnell (MSNBC), Popzilla (MTV), and Rob & Big (MTV). He’s consulted for Sacha Baron Cohen, and he has written and performed onstage for Late Show with David Letterman. More recently, Fried has become a creator, show runner and executive producer for multiple animated series and movies with Stephen Colbert; among them, Our Cartoon President, Tooning Out the News, Washingtonia, and now, the topical toon satire, Fairview, for Comedy Central. He joined me over Zoom to talk about what he loves about his work and what he has learned along the way.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Feb 7, 2022

Al Madrigal grew up in San Francisco and worked in his family’s HR business for 10 years before deciding to pursue a career in comedy. The next decade found Madrigal on the cusp of fame, starring or co-starring in a handful of network sitcoms and even more TV pilots that never made it to air. You likely first got to know Madrigal when he became the Senior Latino Correspondent for The Daily Show with Jon Stewart. Not long after that, Madrigal and Bill Burr launched All Things Comedy, a podcast network and more owned by comedians and built for comedians to succeed, expanding in recent years into making stand-up specials for Comedy Central and Netflix. Since the release of his acclaimed 2017 stand-up special, Shrimpin’ Ain’t Easy, Madrigal has written and performed on Showtime’s I’m Dying Up Here, and landed on the big screen in Night School, The Way Back, and in 2022, the big Sony-Marvel Spider-Man Universe movie, Morbius. Speaking of comic books, Madrigal has just released his own comic-book series featuring Latino superheroes, called Primos. Madrigal sat down with me to talk about that and everything else.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Jan 31, 2022

In the late 1990s, between the comedy booms, perhaps the hottest live stand-up show in Los Angeles happened every week on a Tuesday night. That’s when Guy Torry began hosting Phat Tuesdays at The Comedy Store, introducing black comedy for black audiences into the lily-white-dominated landscape of show business — or as Torry said, he “brought the hood to Hollywood.” This hip-hop comedy show was good for business at The Comedy Store and great timing for TV, what with two brand-new networks in The WB and UPN having a need for new stars. Torry got roles on both networks with The Jamie Foxx Show on The WB, and Good News on UPN. In a new three-part docuseries for Prime Video, director Reginald Hudlin assembled an all-star lineup including Dave Chappelle, Chris Tucker, Snoop Dogg and Tiffany Haddish to dish on the significance of Phat Tuesdays for both stand-up comedy and for Hollywood. And I got Hudlin and Torry to dish with me.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Jan 24, 2022

Ali Vingiano is a writer, actress and filmmaking comedian who has leveled up over the course of the pandemic. She received her first Writer’s Guild Award nomination in 2022 for her work as a writer and executive story editor on Apple TV+s The Morning Show, and also stars in a largely improvised feature film, The End Of Us, which premiered in 2021 at South By SouthWest. After studying film at both Bates College in Maine as well as in Prague, Vingiano graduated from the Columbia Journalism School’s publishing course and soon found herself writing for BuzzFeed. Eventually, she pivoted to video, making short films and viral videos for both BuzzFeed and Glamour magazine. She also previously worked as a field producer for Comedy Central’s The Opposition with Jordan Klepper. She sat down with me to talk about how the arc of her life and career came together, and how she managed to help act and make a pandemic-era rom-com about a couple who breaks up in March 2020, only to find themselves stuck with each other in quarantine.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Jan 17, 2022

Beth Lapides is an actress, writer and comedic performer who has appeared on Will & Grace, Sex & The City, and Politically Incorrect. But she is best known for creating the alternative comedy show UnCabaret, which has been running off and on and mostly on since the late 1980s in Los Angeles. Lapides turned UnCab into a Comedy Central special in 1997, and then four more specials in 2012 for Amazon Prime Video. In between, she shot a talk show pilot for MTV. In 2022, Lapides has delivered her first exclusive audiobook about the power of life-changing decisions called “So You Need to Decide.” In the book, she talks about her own decision to create UnCabaret, and also interviews the likes of Margaret Cho, Isaac Mizrahi, Bob Odenkirk and Phoebe Bridgers.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Jan 10, 2022

Nick Vatterott grew up in St. Louis but discovered his comedy voice in Chicago. You may have seen him perform on Conan, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, or his own half-hour special for Comedy Central. Or you may have heard him on his podcast series, Get Rich Nick, in which he and fellow comedian Nick Turner attempt every get-rich-quick scheme under the sun to teach us and themselves about capitalism in America. Vatterott does have a “day job” writing for HBO’s Real Time with Bill Maher. But the former winner of the Andy Kaufman Award demonstrates his own out-of-the-box break-the-mold approach to comedy with his latest stand-up special, Disingenuous, released at the end of 2021.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Jan 3, 2022

Justin Spitzer is a television writer and producer who worked as a writing assistant on Queer as Folk and Grounded for Life before breaking into the writers room on The Office, where he worked for seven seasons and received three Emmy nominations. Spitzer went on to create, executive produce and showrun his own beloved NBC sitcom, Superstore. In 2021, he signed a new four-year overall deal with Universal Television — his first big project under that deal is American Auto, which received a sneak preview on NBC and Peacock, and stars Ana Gasteyer as the new CEO of Payne Motors in Detroit, who just so happens to know nothing about cars. Spitzer spoke to me about his love for workplace comedies, his own career trajectory in Hollywood, and how having a wife who’s also in the biz — Jenna Bans, the creator of NBC’s Good Girls — helps them both keep on the right track.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Dec 27, 2021

It’s time once again for Jason Zinoman, the comedy critic for The New York Times, to sit down with me as we deconstruct the year that was. This time we’re taking our best cracks at 2021. Was anyone bigger in comedy than Dave Chappelle? Was anyone better than Bo Burnham? We talk about the good, the bad and the ugly of everything in comedy worth talking about in 2021. Was there a Most Valuable Performer in Comedy this year? What does it even mean to be an MVP in comedy? Jason and I hash it all out, and through our differences, we find some common ground. It’s the only year-in-review comedy podcast you need to listen to, so listen up!

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Dec 20, 2021

Russell Howard is one of the UK’s most successful comedians, the writer and star of The Russell Howard Hour on Sky and Russell Howard’s Good News on the BBC network. After releasing his first Netflix special, Recalibrate, in 2017, Howard prepared to embark on a world tour in March 2020, with a documentary crew filming his preparations and family life. Instead, his new wife went back to work as a doctor on the COVID frontlines while he quarantined with his family — and from his childhood bedroom, began broadcasting a pandemic talk show for Sky called Russell Howard’s Home Time. When gigs began opening up again, Howard jumped at the chance to perform for live audiences, no matter where or how. You can see the results of his pandemic work in a new documentary, Until The Wheels Come Off, which accompanies his 2021 Netflix stand-up special, Lubricant. Howard spoke with me about his approach to comedy and to life, and how it may have changed 20 years after he first got onstage as a teenager.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Dec 6, 2021

Mary Elizabeth Kelly is an actress who studied musical theater at Northwestern before moving to New York City. She didn’t quite land on Broadway, although she did rack up TV credits performing on Law & Order: SVU, Alternatino with Arturo Castro on Comedy Central, and Netflix’s Master of None, where she went on a date with Aziz Ansari’s character. Kelly and her husband moved to Los Angeles thinking she’d further her acting career, but the COVID-19 pandemic had other ideas. Instead, she found herself on TikTok, where her impersonation skills and mouth-acting parodies introduced her to millions of new fans. Kelly spoke with me about adapting her career from musical theater to TikTok, auditioning for Saturday Night Live in the summer of 2021, developing her first solo live comedy show, and what comes next for her.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

Nov 29, 2021

I first met Alex Edelman when he was just a teenager, aspiring to become a stand-up comedian while already scoring a lucrative internship with the Boston Red Sox. He achieved much throughout his 20s. A New Face at Montreal’s Just For Laughs. Multiple performances on Conan. Co-founded the Off The Wall Comedy Club in Jerusalem. Wrote on The Great Indoors on CBS. Opened on tour for the likes of Beck. Wrote and produced the YouTube benefit Saturday Night Seder, raising millions for COVID relief. He’s written and starred in three hit stage shows in London and at the Edinburgh Fringe. His first, Millennial, won him the Best Newcomer Award. His third, Just For Us, launches its first proper U.S. run in New York City in December 2021 at the Cherry Lane Theatre. Directed by Adam Brace and presented by Mike Birbiglia, Just For Us recounts what happened when Edelman decided to attend a meeting of white nationalists in New York City so he could face anti-Semitism, well, in the face. Edelman talked with me about growing up and finding his comedic voice, with plenty of shout-outs to the comedians and others who’ve helped him along the way.

If you like this conversation, please consider subscribing to my Substack called Piffany at Piffany.Substack.com so you can read bonus commentary on this episode as well as more comedy news and insights. Thanks in advance, and now that that’s out of the way, let’s get to it!

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