The audience can expect a night of laughs when stand-up comedian Lewis Black hits the stage at Bell Auditorium on Saturday, Feb. 11.
Tickets are $27.50, $37.50 and $47.50 in advance from www.georgialinatix.com, (877) 4AUGTIX or the James Brown Arena box office.
One of the few performers to sell out Carnegie Hall, the Lincoln Center, the Brooks Atkinson Theatre, New York City Center and the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Black has achieved critical acclaim, two Grammy Awards and other accolades for his work – along with lots of loyal fans.
When Black isn’t doing stand-up, he continues to perform Back in Black on The Daily Show with Jon Stewart and make TV and film appearances.
Black said his comedy focuses on a variety of topics: the stupidity of people, rules or ideas; personal experiences; what it’s like to grow older; dealing with technology and politicians.
“Kids have said that I’m like their dad, only funnier. I think I have spent 20 years on stage refining a frustration that most people feel in their daily lives, not just politically but in every way,” Black said during a telephone interview from Midwest City, Okla.
This isn’t the award-winning comedian’s first visit to Augusta. Black said he performed at a comedy club in Augusta about 16 or 17 years ago. An avid golfer, Black would love to one day play at Augusta National Golf Club.
He said he has been on “a perpetual tour” since he started doing comedy on the road about 20 years ago.
“It just has never stopped. The only thing that breaks it up is if I get a movie or have something to do for TV. But when it’s done, I go back on the road,” Black said.
Who makes this accomplished comedian laugh? Black said he finds humor in the comedy of Kathleen Madigan, his opening act John Bowman, Louis C.K. and Ricky Gervais.
“There are a lot of really funny people out there,” Black said.
After switching careers at age 40, Black said he never guessed he would reach this level of success as a comedian. He’s now 63.
“I thought I’d do OK. I just didn’t think there was enough time for me to achieve this kind of success,” Black said.
Black fell in love with theater at age 12 and went on to earn degrees from the University of North Carolina and Yale Drama School.
After graduation, he ended up in New York. His plays were being performed for audiences, but he was struggling financially. His goal back then was to become a college professor.
“I was broke. I had a play that I thought was going to be a big success and now seems to be doing well. But back then I really thought it was going to do at least well enough to get me a teaching job. That’s what I was striving for. And then I could just write plays,” Black said.
Meanwhile, his stand-up comedy started taking off. He had first tried stand-up in college. He could go into a club, get work and get paid for it, he said.
“It finally reached a point where I said, ‘I can’t keep living like this.’ I devoted my life to theater, and I couldn’t break through just to make a minimal living at it. And I’d done all the things that I thought I was supposed to do,” Black said. “And I liked doing (comedy). It was not a big change from theater. I was still writing it, but now I was going to perform it.”
Things have come full circle for Black. One Slight Hitch, the play that he wrote nearly 30 years ago and was depending on to get him a teaching job, is now doing well. Black has revamped the play, and it’s being produced in several cities across the country.
Black has written more than 40 plays and three books. He has a new comedy special set to be released in March.