Comedy Central States: Mitch Hedberg Tours the Midwest
Sam Gordon
2/6/2005 3:50:21 PM

Think that good music is the only reason to leave your house on a cold winter night? Think again. On February 3rd, St. Louis’ Pageant hosted Mitch Hedberg’s comic tour, including Al Madrigal and Lynn Shawcroft. The hilarious Al Madrigal was the MC and first comic of the night. Big on talking about how he is half-Mexican, Madrigal went on for about 20 minutes on the subject. His pace was great and it’s obvious the guy has practiced this routine to a fine art. To involve the audience and give them a real-life example for his story, he asked, “What is the name of the part of town where everyone goes to buy crystal meth?” Someone yelled out “FENTON!” and for the next 5 minutes or so, whenever he talked about this bad area of town, and he referred to “Fenton.” The audience cracked up.

Madrigal then introduced Lynn Shawcroft, who clearly had an off-night. Not many of her jokes got laughs and a lot of it was corny and disappointing. Possibly nervous, a couple of jokes sounded like they could have been funny with the right delivery. Her lack of movement on the stage also made for a very boring routine, and she stayed rooted in the middle of the stage.

Shawcroft left the stage and Al Madrigal returned for another 5 minutes or so of standup, and then he introduced the headliner, Mitch Hedberg.

Mitch launched in with his story about how he was no longer touring with Stephen Lynch (who originally shared the billing), who left the tour a few weeks back to do some stuff on Broadway. Mitch Hedberg started the show with about 10 new jokes, which all got people laughing. Hedberg has a great personality on stage, because while he talks in his monotone mumble, he is always moving around or doing something funny. Case in point: what kind of star hides behind his coat hanging on the microphone stand, hides from the spotlight guy by going behind the curtain, and falls on the same microphone stand he was leaning on?

The great thing about Mitch Hedberg is the fact that the entire show is just one-liners. He brought a book onto the stage with him containing all his jokes, and randomly picking out jokes and delivering them to the audience in what seemed like a completely random order. The whole second half of his set, he asked the audience what they wanted to hear and everyone would call out his best-known jokes on request. At one point, he spoke out loud about how instead of being undercover cop he wanted to be an “overcover” cop—wearing about three uniforms at the same time. Hedberg then realized that everyone was cracking up and he was like “That was a damn good joke. I’m putting that shit in the book!” The crowd cheered and he wrote the joke into his joke book.

Being the big Hedberg fan that I am, I was really happy at the amount of new jokes he presented that aren’t on his CDs. When you listen to Mitch Hedberg on CD, you’ll get a good sense of his personality, and when you see him live, he doesn’t disappoint.


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