If you are in town Saturday night and miss Kathleen Madigan at the Community Concert Hall at Fort Lewis College, you will have missed one of the funniest people who will ever visit our town.
Madigan is a laugh-out-loud comedian at the top of her game, and her show is a rare treat, indeed. (Watch performance clips of her at www.kathleenmadigan.com.) Her fame has come through countless appearances on Jay Lenos The Tonight Show, Late Night with David Letterman, Conan OBriens various late-night ventures and many others.
She also holds the distinction of being the only comedian to go unchallenged on NBCs Last Comic Standing and defeated a slew of the top working comics, including Larry the Cable Guy, to win the 2007 Sirius Radio Comedy Cup.
But for audiences that have caught Madigans act only on network television, the best is yet to come. Her work on cable channels, including the recent Showtime special Gone Madigan, is where to see her best and most irreverent material Madigan is not a clean comic. Thats the kind of show Durango will get and hers is the rapid-fire, gut-busting style that leaves audiences literally gasping for air. What well see specifically, however, is anyones guess.
I keep about four hours of material in my head all the time I just keep adding stuff as quickly as possible and pushing other stuff to the back of my head, but never out, Madigan said by phone earlier this week from her home in Los Angeles.
The City of Angels is not Madigans first, second or 10th choice of places to live this towns ridiculous, and I would not choose to live here on my own accord, she said but as an A-lister on the comedy circuit, it pays off. She landed her 14th Leno gig Feb. 21 because she happened to be in town at the right time and will tape a segment on Dr. Phil as soon as she gets back to L.A. from her Durango trip.
Madigan singled Leno out as her favorite recurring gig.
Hes always been extremely nice to me and my parents, very accessible. Everybodys got opinions about everything, but the guy in person is just nice, and thats what Im sticking with, she said.
Madigan has traveled the world performing, but its her recent involvement with the USO thats been most fulfilling. She went on her second USO tour to the Middle East over the holidays with Robin Williams, Lewis Black, Lance Armstrong and others and said the experience is like nothing any performer could ever imagine: The working conditions couldnt be worse, and the audiences couldnt be better.
My brother asked me what Kandahar (Afghanistan) was like. I said Heres what the two weeks was like: Walk into your garage, take off all your clothes, get into your walk-in freezer and then every 10 minutes, Im going to come out and throw sand in your face.
She added, But I told Lew (Black), theres no way well ever have shows this good at home because no one will ever be this excited to see us. Those troops are amazing.
Opening for Madigan will be up-and-coming comedian Jason Dudey, who the headliner hand-picked for her current tour.
Hes totally funny and getting funnier, Madigan said.
Youve got to travel with these people, and we have about 23 hours a day off on the road, she said. I have to really like the person Im with or it can get very ugly.