Bob Alper claims his background was perfect for becoming a stand-up comedian.
“After 14 years as a rabbi, I became an expert at performing for hostile audiences,” said Alper, who will bring his routine to the Congregation Children of Israel at 7 p.m. Sunday.
Alper, an ordained rabbi with a doctorate in theology from Princeton Theological Seminary, once considered comedy “an impossible dream,” but it’s one he has lived for more than 20 years.
His clean brand of comedy is appropriate for audiences age 11 and older, and his bits can be heard on XM and Sirius satellite radio, sandwiched between the likes of Bill Cosby and Bob Newhart.
A few slices of his comedic home life can be seen on You Tube, where he offers “proof” that his dog, Barney, is Jewish. After all, Barney can tell the difference between kosher and non-kosher dog treats, he said.
Although Alper is a rabbi, he said his humor and style are appropriate and enjoyed by people of different faiths. His 90-minute routine is fast-paced and “non-hurtful.”
“I perform in tons of churches and mosques,” said Alper, who bills his show as “hilarious,” “clean” and “gentile-friendly.”
He receives frequent positive comments on his comedy routines on the radio.
Uplifting and inspiring people is important to Alper. In addition to his comedy act, he has written several books, including Life Doesn’t Get Any Better Than This and a full-color cartoon book called A Rabbi Confesses. His latest book, Thanks I Needed That (And Other Stories of the Spirit), was published last month.
“It’s inspiring. It’s 32 separate chapters. They are all real stories,” he said.
The book is available on Amazon and through his Web site, www.bobalper.com. He hopes to have copies with him this weekend, but there was a glitch in the printing process, which has delayed them.
Tickets are $18 in advance and $22 at the door.
For more information, call (706) 736-3140.