Comedy has been a significant part of Carnegie Hall’s history for more than a century. The Hall has played host to hilarious performances by vaudevillians, storytellers, stand-up comedians, authors, and outstanding comedic entertainers of all types including Will Rogers (1926), Bob Newhart (1961), Lenny Bruce (1961), Phyllis Diller (1962), Bill Cosby (1971), Groucho Marx (1972), Steve Martin (1978), Bob Hope (1984), Jerry Seinfeld (1992), Eric Idle (2000), Robin Williams (2002), and just last week Kathy Griffin and Jim Jefferies performed in Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage presented by New York Comedy Festival.
Humorist and best-selling author David Sedaris joined the illustrious group mentioned above with his Carnegie Hall debut, and only performance to date, on October 22, 2002. The recording of that night's performance–David Sedaris Live at Carnegie Hall–received two GRAMMY® award nominations.
Next week, for the first time in over 10 years, Sedaris returns to Carnegie Hall for two performances–Alone Together At Last: Lena Dunham and David Sedaris on November 19 , and An Evening with David Sedaris on November 20 presented by Madstone Productions & Show and Tell in association with the Steven Barclay Agency.
We want to take this opportunity to share a bit about two of the many performances that comprise Carnegie Hall's rich comedic history.
Charlie Chaplin's first full-length film, The Kid, received its world premiere at Carnegie Hall on January 21, 1921.
Program image courtesy of Carnegie Hall Archives
The press kit for Andy Kaufman's 1979 Carnegie Hall performance was made with care.