Kliph Nesteroff

discusses

The Comedians:
Drunks, Thieves, Scoundrels, and the History of American Comedy

in conversation with KEN REID

This event includes a book signing

Date

Nov
9
Monday
November 9, 2015
8:30 PM
(Doors at 7:00)

Location

The Comedy Studio
1238 Massachusetts Ave. Cambridge, MA

Tickets

This event is free; no tickets are required.

Harvard Book Store and The Comedy Studio welcome comedy historian and former stand-up comic KLIPH NESTEROFF for a discussion of his book The Comedians: Drunks, Thieves, Scoundrels, and the History of American Comedy. Kliph will be joined in conversation by Boston comic KEN REID.

In The Comedians, Kliph Nesteroff brings to life a century of American comedy with real-life characters, forgotten stars, mainstream heroes and counterculture iconoclasts. Based on over two hundred original interviews and extensive archival research, Nesteroff’s groundbreaking work is a narrative exploration of the way comedians have reflected, shaped, and changed American culture over the past one hundred years.

Starting with the vaudeville circuit at the turn of the last century, Nesteroff introduces the first stand-up comedian—an emcee who abandoned physical shtick for straight jokes. After the repeal of Prohibition, Mafia-run supper clubs replaced speakeasies, and mobsters replaced vaudeville impresarios as the comedian’s primary employer. In the 1950s, the late-night talk show brought stand-up to a wide public, while Lenny Bruce, Mort Sahl, and Jonathan Winters attacked conformity and staged a comedy rebellion in coffeehouses. From comedy’s part in the Civil Rights movement and the social upheaval of the late 1960s, to the first comedy clubs of the 1970s and the cocaine-fueled comedy boom of the 1980s, The Comedians culminates with a new era of media-driven celebrity in the twenty-first century.

“Comedy buffs and social historians will forever be in Kliph Nesteroff’s debt for this book. A heady mixture of show-business anecdotes, gossip, and in-depth research on everything from vaudeville to podcasting. What’s more, it’s a great read: I couldn’t put it down.”—Leonard Maltin

Ken Reid
Ken Reid

Ken Reid

Called a “pop culture maven” by the Boston Globe, Boston native Ken Reid has been performing for over ten years in various capacities. Ken was nominated by the Boston Phoenix as Best Comedian in Boston 2010 and 2012. In his podcast TV Guidance Counselor, Ken and his guests explore the tough television watching decisions of our past.

Kliph Nesteroff
Kliph Nesteroff

Kliph Nesteroff

Kliph Nesteroff is a former stand-up comic turned writer. A longtime contributor to WFMU, writing about the history of comedy, Nesteroff’s latest project is hosting the Classic Showbiz Talk Show, a live series in Los Angeles that has welcomed comedy luminaries like Mel Brooks, Fred Willard, and Laugh-In creator George Schlatter.

The Comedy Studio
1238 Massachusetts Ave. Cambridge, MA

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Event Co-Sponsor(s)

The Comedy Studio: thecomedystudio.com

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