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Thursday, October 2, 2014 |  Madison, WI: 63.0° F  Overcast
The Daily

COMEDY

How Michael Somerville turned a college dare into a comedy career

Michael Somerville has found himself in some strange situations during his 13-year career. Ask him about the college dare that started it all or his early work dancing in a pink bear costume for bat mitzvahs, and he'll offer all the proof you need. But his knack for self-deprecation and relationship-centered standup has opened many doors in the last decade. I asked him about his road to a comedy career before a three-night, five-show run at the Comedy Club on State Dec. 13-15. >More
 For comedian Stephen Lynch, standup plus music equals magic onstage

If Paul Simon had an evil twin brother, one whose musical talents explored themes not of love and friendship but Juggalos and acid trips at the mall, he'd no doubt sound a lot like Stephen Lynch. A self-professed "musician trapped in the body of a comedian," he's produced a handful of studio albums and two highly rated Comedy Central specials over the course of a decade. I asked Lynch about his records, his acid trips, Juggalos and making the album he's always dreamed of before his Nov. 16 performance at the Barrymore Theatre. >More
 Sklar Brothers create a comedy community: A Q&A with Randy Sklar

Randy and Jason Sklar open a three-night run at the Comedy Club on State starting Thursday. The twin brothers from St. Louis preside over one of the most successful comedy podcasts, the weekly SklarBro Country, and its shorter companion podcast, Sklarbro County. The podcast reveals the pair to be natural talk show hosts, able to riff on news and sports headlines one minute, pull a revealing personal story from a guest the next and launch into a ridiculous sketch with an impressionist after that. >More
 Voice actors John Roberts and Eugene Mirman discuss performing a Bob's Burgers episode live on stage

Several juicy ingredients make Bob's Burgers a hit among fans of Fox's animated sitcoms and critics at publications such as Paste and Slant. The show stars the Belcher family, whose struggling burger restaurant violates nearly every health code imaginable. Filled with bizarre situations and offbeat humor, their weekly misadventures are cleverly sketched out by writers from animated classics such as Dr. Katz and King of the Hill. >More
 Bill Cosby battles womankind at Overture Hall

Bill Cosby's show at Overture Hall on Friday had a unified theme: the battle of the sexes. The legendary comedian began by discussing the root of the problem -- Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden -- and ended with a story about fighting his wife over the thermostat setting. >More
 Alan Talaga talks about performing standup comedy in Madison with Chris Lay and Jay Abbondanza (video)

In conjunction with his first person tale of becoming a standup comedian, Alan Talaga sits down with two of his peers to detail horrible show experiences, jokes that work in Wisconsin and pornography. >More
 Joke Writing 101 with Madison comedian Alan Talaga

Can you teach someone how to write a joke? Local standup comedian Alan Talaga thinks so. >More
 Love at first mic: How one goofy, nerdy guy became a standup comedian

I need to look over my set list, a note card filled with illegibly scribbled jokes. I've written and rewritten it to fit as much material as possible into my three minutes on stage. Each week, I sacrifice an entire night for these three minutes, a night I could have spent with family or friends. I'm not getting paid. I'm not even getting drink tickets. Sometimes I wonder why I do standup. For the answer, I need to think back to 2008, the year I signed up for my first open mic. >More
 Funnyman Leslie Jordan reflects on The Help, Will & Grace, Ski Patrol and one-man comedy shows

Known as for his candid, hilarious performances and his 4-foot-11-inch stature, actor-comedian Leslie Jordan is one of the most recognizable faces in television and film. He's cultivated a diverse body of work since the late 1980s, taking an Emmy Award-winning turn as Karen's swanky rival Beverley Leslie in the long-running sitcom Will & Grace and playing newspaper editor Mr. Blackly in the 2011 drama The Help. >More
 Ian Edwards went from a Burger King drive-thru to the comedy-club circuit

After moving to New York from Jamaica at age 17, standup comedian Ian Edwards began his career at a Burger King drive-thru. While taking orders through the speaker, he'd talk in odd accents. Joking with strangers was a way to pass the time, but it soon changed the course of his life. >More
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