The Balls On This Guy: Todd Barry Works the Crowd
If you frequent the FPH website, or you peruse the print edition, you’ll find that lately we’ve been covering lots of comedians; and comedy in general. There’s something so intense, so brave, so crazy to have the balls to do stand up comedy for a career path. If for some reason, you can find a way to differentiate your act from every other act out there; you stand the chance of “making it” as a stand up. Enter Todd Barry. Barry has impeccable comedic timing, he’s been in movies like “The Wrestler,” shows like “Dr. Katz,” and done stand up on pretty much every late night talk show. He also found a way to differentiate himself from many stand ups with his crowd working ability, while covering everyday topics like the drama of Yelp reviews and the germaphobe in all of us. On Saturday April 26th, he will bring his Final Crowd Work Tour to Houston’s Warehouse Live.
You have to understand the nature of this tour in order to appreciate why you should make it out to see this show. Barry might be one of the better current stand ups in the US today. The Bronx native has a relatable quality that comes across in his humor, mixed with a soft demeanor that delivers his smart humor in an easy going way. Every comic with any form of success works a crowd. That either means listening to what jokes work on a crowd and adjusting your set to that rhythm, or having a minor interaction with the crowd. The latter, is a bold move that very few comedians do, and if they try; it can easily take a nose dive. I read a description of a Todd Barry show somewhere that said, “a Todd Barry show consists of two things, amazing jokes and amazing crowd work.” That’s a one hundred percent accurate description, however that’s not what’s coming to Houston on the 26th.
Back in September of 2013, Barry decided to try something different. What if he went out on stage, and eventually on tour with absolutely no prepared material, and just did crowd work? Away from the incredibly brave and ballsy idea to tour without a prepared set, it was a fairly inventive and a pass or fail plan to undertake. The result can be found on Barry’s latest album compiled from seven different West Coast dates, where he does nothing but crowd work. The interactions are all different, as the crowds are all different. That incredible and successful leap of faith on Barry’s part is what’s coming to Houston. The coolest part of it all is that you can be a part of the magic as well by going and being a part of history, in witnessing this inventive and creative process in person. How many times can you go one on one or have any interaction with a comedian and not be called a heckler? It should be a truly hilarious and amazing event for all in attendance, and a not to be missed show for any fan of comedy. Of course, it can only get better with one of Houston’s most revered and amusing comedians in Bob Biggerstaff opening things up. Biggerstaff has been a finalist on NBC’s “Last Comic Standing,” he’s been on Comedy Central’s “Live From Gotham,” and he’s a part of the nationally syndicated radio show “The Bob and Tom Show.” He’s appeared everywhere from The Moontower Comedy Fest in Austin to Just For Laughs Chicago, and he’s the perfect fit for the Todd Barry show.
It can’t be stressed enough that this is a show that’s a once in a lifetime experience. If you’re a Todd Barry Fan or you just want to laugh hysterically, this is the show for you. The show will take place in the Studio at Warehouse Live. The show is all ages and the tickets are a miniscule $15.00. The doors are at 7:30.