Wednesday, November 24, 2010

The "Comedians with Disabilties Act" this Friday at Sacramento Comedy Spot!

I think it was around March of this year when I went to check out the monthly open mic at Laughs Unlimited in Old Sac.  I hadn't realized you need to bring audience members to get stage time . I was still pretty new to comedy and didn't know the local ropes yet.  So I wouldn't be getting on stage there that night (good news is that now, months later, there's a cartoon of me, autographed by me, framed behind the bar at Laughs, so I did eventually make my mark there), but I wanted to check out the HUGE pile of comics that were fighting for mic time that night (I counted 24).  Some of them I knew from other open mics or from comedy shows I'd seen around town.  Others I was seeing for the first time.

Steve Danner was one of the latter.  Steve, a little person comedian, completely blew me away with his performance.  Great stage presence, crack comedy timing, fantastic writing.  I liked his work even more because he was doing a lot of what I was doing - talking about the thing that made me obviously different - and he was doing it so well, telling the truth from his experiences, not pandering or going for the obvious joke, and owning the crowd.  When you're a comic and you see another comic you really dig, the first thing you think is "Man, I totally have to work with that guy/gal".  That was my thought with Steve.  That was just because of his comedy skill.  But after that, it occurred to me that it'd be a really cool pairing if he and I did a show together due to both of us being "different" comedians.  I thought, further, that a show with a trio of us "special" people would be awesome and unique.  A title for the show even popped into my head - "The Special Needs Comedy Tour" - but I didn't go much further with it.  I didn't know of any other challenged local comics, save for a couple of NorCal wheelchair guys (neither of which I'd seen perform at the time), and I felt such a show should only have one wheelchair guy in it anyway.  I remember thinking at the time, "If only there was a blind comedian we could use...".

Cut to early fall.  I got a text from Keith Lowell Jensen.  He was at a comedy show, and had to let me know about this fantastic young comedian he'd just seen.  This comedian - Eric Mee - was blind.  And due to that, Keith got the idea that he wanted to put a show together with the two of us.

Oh, destiny.  How tasty you are.

I told Keith about Steve, and the rest fell into place, with Keith putting the show together and booking it for the Sacramento Comedy Spot.  My first time meeting Eric - a college student who lost his eyesight two and a half years ago when he was stabbed down by the river - was a couple of weeks ago when we all met at the Spot for our photo shoot with photographer Cynthia E. Jones.  I understood immediately why Keith liked him.  And his comedy skills were apparent just from chatting with him for a while.

So this Friday is the debut of the Comedians with Disabilities Act (my new title for the show that I liked better), and we're doing it at one of my favorite venues in town.  The media blitz is in full swing, even though we're competing with Thanksgiving.  The three of us did a radio interview together this morning on Capital Public Radio on their show "Insight", hosted by Jeffrey Callison.  You can listen to that show here:

We close out the show, so our bit starts right at 39:00.  This Friday, the day of the show, is the double TV/print whammy.  First, Steve and Eric will be appearing to promote the show on Channel 31's Good Day Sacramento show (I won't be appearing because I just appeared on that show recently, and there's a rule about that), and the Sacramento Bee will be publishing a story on Eric that also plugs our CDA show.  We're hoping that the saturation brings in some Black Friday shoppers who are tired of fighting the malls and would like a little comedy to brighten up their day.

And we would love to see YOU there!  This should be a fantastic night of comedy, made more special (but the normal kind of "special") by the hosting of Keith Lowell Jensen.  The show info is as follows:

Earth's Best Comedy Show Presents:
8:00 PM
Sacramento Comedy Spot
1050 20th St.
Sacramento, CA 95811
916 444 3137

Tickets are $12.00 for the show, and you can use the link to buy your tickets in advance if you prefer.

Be sure to check the Bee on Friday, watch Good Day Sacramento, and come on down to 20th Street (between J and K) to see the show live!  WARNING:  all the good parking spots will be taken up by the performers.  HAH ha.

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