Reader, Calendar, February 24, 1997
Experienced only need
by Steve Coulter
upstart weekly comedy show at the original Stick & Stein in El Segundo
caters only to professionals.
While Dan Villalpando is trying to
create a show that brings together professional comics with amateurs at The
Lighthouse Cafe, Perry Kurtz is giving professionals a chance to work out new
material in front of a crowd at the original Stick & Stein in El Segundo.
"I bring in comics that do new and old material. It gives them a
chance to rework their material," Kurtz said. "The audience will get
into it because they know they're watching the creative process.
A professional comic of 18 years who once ran a similar show at Sponda
Cafe in Hermosa Beach, Kurtz wants to create a circuit of smaller comedy
nights that allow comics to get their routines up to speed before making their
way to the more established clubs.
Now entering its second week, Kurtz hopes
to turn the Thursday night Stick & Stein showcases into an established and
respected comedy night in order to expand the circuit into other
establishments in the area throughout the week.
So far he has already secured an
unprecedented Friday night show at the unlikely venue of Eat At Joe's
restaurant in Redondo Beach and is in negotiation with two other Redondo Beach
establishments to create similar bills.
"I'm working on building a comedy circuit because there just
aren't places for professional comics to work up new material and there are a
lot of comics," Kurtz said. "The way a comic develops material is by
changing it a little at a time. The only way to do that is on stage. You can't
just sit down and write a 20-minute comedy piece."
The Thursday "All Professional Comedy Night" will feature
five comics each week beginning at 8p.m. with Kurtz acting as the opening act
and emcee. Kurtz, who also books the talent for the shows, says he picks the
comics based upon their experience, level of training and the type of show
Because he understands that the caliber of
comedians he hires will make or break the reputation of the comedy nights,
Kurtz is careful to pick comedians that know how to work with crowds.
"It's a nice professional comedy show." Kurtz said. "I
basically look for comics who might have a little training and who have worked
on the road a little." In putting
these nights together for the Stick & Stein, Kurtz purposely avoided
making them "open mic" or "Amateur" comedy shows. Having
organized shows of that nature in the past, Kurtz feels that people simply
want to watch comedians who are proven to be funny.
"Generally, letting amateurs up there, once in a while you get a
good comic. Amateurs will often cross the line and start insulting the crowd.
Professional comics will know they are crossing that line," Kurtz said.
"Comedy audiences are very loyal. If you put on good shows, they will
Thursdays from 8 to 10 p.m. comedian Perry Kurtz will be hosting a
Professional Comedy Night at the Stick & Stein, 210 East Grand Ave., El
Segundo. There's no cover charge, but watch your wallet-these are, after
all, professional comedians. Call 322-6205.
A Reason To Laugh Again
Comedians invade the Redondo Pier
by Robb Fulcher
out Redondo, here comes Perry Kurtz. The comedian and former stripper (honest)
is following up his successful Wednesday stand up shows at Sponda Coffee House
in Hermosa by producing a regular Sunday show at Sweet Suzie's Saloon on
Fisherman's Wharf in Redondo.
he does in Hermosa, Kurtz books talented and successful comedians with TV
credits, road experience, and all the show biz credentials an audience could ask
for, blended with up-and-comers from the South bay and elsewhere.
Sponda shows count a number of regular patrons among their audiences. Kurtz
himself hosts the shows, using his sardonic wit on the audience and waxing
humorous about whatever happens to be going on in his lifer from his latest road
trip to his daughter's enjoyment of the male nudity in Braveheart. "I
usually don't even know what I'm saying, Kurtz explained.
club credits include the Comedy Store in West Hollywood and La Jolla,
Dangerfields in New York and Las Vegas, and The Improv in L.A. and San
Francisco. His TV credits include an HBO Comedy Showcase and an appearance on
the Comedy Central Network's Stand Up Stand Up. He also hosted the San Francisco
Exotic Erotic Halloween Ball from 1982 to 1987.
Kurtz' stand-up shows are 7 p.m, Sunday at Sweet Suzie's Saloon, 202 Fisherman's
Wharf, Redondo Beach (379-8831) and 9 p.m. Wednesday at Sponda Coffee House, 49
Pier Ave., Hermosa (798-9204).
Perry's Pro Comedy Nights feature host Perry Kurtz along with five
professional comics. Weds, May 14 and 21, 8-10pm. Full bar and kitchen. $8.
1700 S Pacific Coast Hwy, Redondo Beach.