Center Stage Archives - The Laugh Button

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  • Center Stage: Joseph Vecsey

    Joseph VecseyI was able to talk with Joseph Vecsey, an up and coming comic in the New York scene. Vecsey was a great guy that discussed his past and how he got to where he is today. Joe has opened for Godfrey, Donnell Rawlings, Jim Breuer, Susie Essman, and hosts The All Star Comedy Showcase at the Bay Street Theatre every year. This year’s event is June 17th and includes Kenny Garcia, Vic Henley, Chris Clarke, and Mark Riccadonna. Joe is definitely a busy guy who seems to have at least one hand in everything, but always gets the job done.

    Born and raised in New York City, Vecsey got his start by teaching himself how to write feature length movie scripts in high school. Vecsey continued to sharpen his writing skills through college when some of his friends began to try their luck in stand up comedy. “My second or third year in college, a friend said maybe he wanted to start doing stand up or was thinking about it. I said ‘I’ll write some jokes for you.’ I didn’t want to do it. So I wrote a bunch of jokes and he was like ‘alright, you should do it too.’ I really didn’t want to but I went to an open mic, New York Comedy Club, there was like ten people. I was sh*tting my pants, scared to death. So I went up and I did well and I was hooked from that day.” Vecsey said of his comedic beginnings. Read More

    Center Stage: Carl De Gregorio

    Carl DeGregorioHere he is, today’s man of the hour, Mr. Carl De Gregorio. Carl is an up and coming comedian who I had the privilege of catching up with. He’s a great guy with a hilarious sense of humor as well as a true appreciation for the art of acting.

    Carl got his start in the acting world and at a young age when he was accepted to The New Jersey’s Governor’s School for the Arts. He later went on to graduate from Carnegie Mellon University, a very prestigious school. Believe it or not, Carl originally wanted to be a serious actor, but realized he was always looking for the lighter side of acts. “The thing is, when you go to these drama schools they don’t want you to be funny because they want you to be serious. I had a natural inclination to be funny… I’d always try to find something funny in a scene.” So he tried his hand in stand-up comedy in New York City. He says he has enjoyed it and the grind of becoming a full time comedian began.

    Carl is currently located in LA, where he has been doing stand-up comedy for almost nine years. Carl says his main focus right now is stand-up comedy, but would still be interested in other projects, “dream job would be writing and acting in something funny, that I wrote and can be in too. But you know, I don’t think anybody is thinking about what hopefully comes down the pipe. So everything’s on the table.” Read More

    Center Stage: William Kilmer

    William KilmerAllow me introduce you to Mr. William Kilmer, an up and coming comedian from Auburn, Nebraska. I was able to catch up with William last Saturday. I learned a crazy amount about this guy, the quickest lesson being how passionate about comedy he is. He started in sketch comedy, but was finally persuaded by his friends to venture into stand up comedy. At only 20 years of age he was let into the local bar to try his luck at stand up and as he puts it “I was addicted from there on.”

    William has several idols including Robin Williams, Bill Cosby, Bob Newhart, and George Carlin. William discussed how he started preforming at a young age “My father being a minister, I went to church youth gatherings/camps where they had talent shows. I would take jokes from those comedians and do them. Like Abbott and Castello, my brother and I would do together.”

    William is wrapped up in numerous shows right now around town now and is looking to break out. “I have some shows getting set up right now in Arizona and Iowa, with more states to come too. It’s a work in progress breaking into the Comedy scene, but it’s my dream to do it for a living, to make people laugh and smile” he says. Read More

    Center Stage: Steve Gillespie

    Steve GillespieHard work pays off especially when trying to crack into the highly competitive comedy scene.

    Steve Gillespie is officially releasing his first comedy album Stever Fever as pre-releases of this album have been on Pandora this past week. Hailing from Minneapolis, Steve quickly emerged as a fast-rising talent in one of the most competitive comedy scenes in the nation. Steve has opened for some of the biggest comedians in the scene including Doug Benson, Gilbert Gottfried, Jim Breuer, Harland Williams and Dave Atell.

    On March 14 – 16, Steve can be seen at the Gilda’s Laughfest. He will be performing with other heavy hitters such as Bill Burr, Lewis Black and Brian Reagan. Steve is running all over the place from Indiana to Florida to Minnesota to the Mall of America. Read More

    Center Stage: Bread Foster

    Bread FosterHis style is raunchy, brutal, and quite frankly a little weird. However, it is this style that has allowed him to stand out from the rest. Bread Foster has a very scattered past that he often draws from, a past that includes him being homeless, beaten, and even molested. When asked about it bread simply says “I don’t need sympathy… a billion other people have had it harder… I don’t have a victims mentality about it.” Yes, this article has gotten real deep, real fast. However, there is light at the end of the tunnel, Bread has kept a upbeat mentality. “I’m not getting made fun of today. I learned to defend myself and a lot of my wit comes from that.” I asked Bread if it’s weird to make jokes about such a rough beginning, “No way, it’s making people laugh about the way I see the world.” Bread said “My favorite was having people laugh at one of the times I was molested by another kid, I could watch the chill creep up peoples spines before they laughed… I’m going to wake up tomorrow no matter what (I’m actually a immortal highlander) so I might as well work my ass off.”

    Bread first got on stage when he was 17, however, after a “savage beating” he stepped away from comedy for a few years. It wasn’t till he was 23 that he created a twitter account that seemed to take off immediately. Less than a year later Bread was back on stage opening for a popular “underground” comedian. After Bread had a falling out with that comedian, he went back to his roots and began doing open mics again. Read More

    Center Stage: Andrew Lisa

    Andrew Lisa has an epic beard. Why do we mention this? Well it’s just something else that makes him more manly than us. Lisa walks a button-pushing, cringe humor line. Is it safe for everyone? Probably not. Is it funny? Absolutely.

    Lisa grew up in suburban New Jersey and attended college at Hofstra in New York. He cut his teeth first as a columnist for a local newspaper. He quickly got syndicated through Gannett News Service making him one of the service’s youngest syndicated columnists with his words being published in papers across the country.

    While in New York Lisa wrote/edited sections for the paper amNew York and began to produce a weekly stand-up show in Greenwich Village. Lisa honed his stand-up act in the very New York clubs so many legends of comedy did before him. Read More

    Center Stage: Ray Harrington

    Ray Harrington is a fan of marketing and burritos. I know this because we once sat down and ate burritos and talked marketing before he did a set in NYC.

    The New England native is also a pretty hilarious stand-up comedian and I’m sure he’d much rather you know this characteristic over the previous two. Harrington just recorded his first stand-up comedy album and will be releasing it on Stand Up! Records in a few months. “I’m happy to be on a label with such great comics and to work with Dan [Schlissel, owner Stand Up! records]. He’s a great guy and a genuine fan of comedy.”

    In addition to working across the country, Harrington is working on a run of shows in London in the Spring. Harrington told The Laugh Button of his trek to London, Read More

    Center Stage: James Adomian

    Last summer Janeane Garofalo shot a “What the fuck?” face my way as we walked past each other on Second Avenue in Manhattan’s East Village. It wasn’t anything I was doing. The brilliant comedian James Adomian was shouting into my microphone with an intensity and hilarity reminiscent of a young Robin Williams. I was interviewing Adomian for a feature on comedy podcasting, a universe in which he is a bright shining star. Read More

    Center Stage: Harvard Sailing Team

    Harvard Sailing Team is a nationally-renowned “Ivy League” sketch comedy group that’s earned critical praise and been featured on national television. They also have a fanatic YouTube following. Things took off for the group with their their “Boys Will Be Girls” series of videos. They earned an MTV Comedy Award nominee for Best Original Viral and gathered nearly 7 million views to date. Read More

    Center Stage: Axis Of Awesome

    Axis of Awesome is Australia’s contribution to the comedy music scene. Whereas The Lonely Island might get away with hardcore raps and hooks sung by celebs, AOA get away with clever wordplay and pop parodies, tunes that would line up more with Flight of the Conchords or Tenacious D. In fact, if you imagine Jack Black fronting Flight of the Conchords, you got yourself a pretty damn close comparison to Axis of Awesome. Read More