Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Smile and chuckle

You know, not all Laughing for a Living is a knee slapper. I spent a great weekend in Holland and Saugatuck seeing fantastic professional theater, which I enjoyed tremendously, even though I don't remember too many belly laughs. Saturday I saw I Remember Mama at Hope Summer Repertory. It's a warm family saga with plenty of light moments and a chuckle or two -- especially when Uncle Chris is teaching his great nephew how to curse. Then Sunday I saw Five Guys Named Moe at Mason Street Warehouse and all I can say is Moe, give me Moe! This show features a snappy, high-energy male quintet singing the 40s jazz of Louis Jordan, smooth and sassy. And get-outta-your-seat fun, at times. Read my reviews on Encore Michigan

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Zimmer's zingers

Enjoyed a few chuckles today with Kim Zimmer, the West Michigan native who has reigned over soap operas for more than 30 years. Kim has a new book coming out Aug. 2 and it's just as straight forward as she is. Balls-to-the-wall is the way she describes it. "I'm known for being honest," she told me in a phone interview from her New Jersey home. "Fans deserve to know the truth. Why lie about anything?"  She blamed the producers for the demise of "Guiding Light"  in 2009, and likened their decisions to "Springtime for Hitler," the planned-to-fail musical that's the central joke of "The Producers." The show was torpedoed by cutting corners and staff, she said, ignoring the fans and trying to appeal to a new audience. I couldn't help but think how closely that scenario parallels the demise of newspapers.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

More Laughing for a Living

Not to be outdone by my new release, Great News Town,  my memoir Laughing for a Living is now being featured on  Self-Publishing Spotlight a service of the Kalamazoo Gazette. Check it out -- and please recommend the book if you like it.  I'll be talking about both books at 7 tonight at Schuler's Books and Music on Alpine. See you there.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Two beeps or not two beeps?

No puns are worse than Shakespeare puns and there a puns a plenty in Return to the Forbidden Planet, which opened Friday at Hope Summer Repertory Theatre. What an energetic show.  I couldn't believe that small, 9-member cast could create such a whirlwind of activity. Of course, having a score with more than 20 rock tunes including "Wipeout," "Great Balls of Fire" and "Shake, Rattle and Roll"  had something to do with it. And when everyone in the audience joins in a mass hand jive to reverse polarity... well, it was just another day of laughing for a living!