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The Englert welcomes Louis Anderson

BY CLAIRE DIETZ | SEPTEMBER 18, 2014 5:00 AM

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Comedy Central named him as “One of the 100 Greatest Standup Comedians of All Time”; Louie Anderson will bring his winning brand of light-hearted humor to Iowa City.

Anderson will perform at the Englert Theater, 221 E. Washington St., at 8 p.m. Friday. Local playwright and performer Megan Gogerty will perform a standup routine of as Anderson’s opening act. Tickets cost $35 for reserved seating.

Anderson has performed comedy for 36 years and has starred in numerous TV shows and movies, including his own show on Fox, “Life with Louie,” which won two Emmy Awards.

“I see my style as a cross between Jonathan Winters and Johnny Carson, with the influence of the greats, Jonathan Winters, Bill Cosby, Johnny Carson …”  Anderson said. “I’m really engaging, but my comedy comes from a loving, caring, family-orientated place, where you can bring really anybody to my show, if you’re over 10 or under 100. No one’s going to be offended; nobody has to worry about what I’m saying.”

Like Anderson, Gogerty said her routine will be fairly family-friendly.

“I’m not a filthy comedian; I’m probably like PG-13,” she said. “I do a lot of jokes about the world, and pop culture, and talk about feminism.”

Gogerty has extensive experience on the stage, including performing in her the solo plays Hillary Clinton Got Me Pregnant and Feet First in the Water with a Baby in My Teeth. Still, Gogerty said, standup comedy is a whole other ball game.

“Standup is different from my solo work, just because the audiences are different; they have a different set of expectations,” she said. “The pacing is different, and you have a different set of expectations from when you’re in the theater seeing a solo show.”

While Gogerty’s performance will focus more on current events, Anderson said audiences can expect his routine to feature irreverent humor surrounding his life.

“My comedy is about what is mostly in front of you; I’m not trying to hit you over the head with it,” he said. “I’m not exploring the darkness of the world, I’m exploring the lightness … I do all the F words: food, family, over 50, no dirty words … What they should expect is a trip back through my childhood and theirs, as well as a trip forward into getting older.”

Anderson also had some advice for aspiring comedians.

“It’s the only one of the arts that you have where you can really learn it is in front of people,” he said. “You can’t learn how to become a comedian in front of your mirror, in the bathtub, in the shower, in the car. You have to have an audience … A good comedian needs an audience.”


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