Though the city is eager to claim the likes of Community creator Dan Harmon, collegiate Chris Farley, the ZAZ film team, Gene Wilder, and Frank Caliendo—who will perform two Riverside Theater shows Saturday—as area natives following their Brew City exodus, Milwaukee is rather hesitant to take an interest in its own comedy scene. Until recently, that made sense, as “Milwaukee comedy” seemed like an oxymoron of sorts. However, the city’s stand-up comedy scene has truly stepped it up of late, and the drastically-improved cast of comics is growing, strengthening, and is taking its material to all corners of the city—even if the general public is slow to notice.
In the second installment of On The Record, host Tyler Maas went down to the basement of the Grand Avenue Mall and spoke with longtime champion of Milwaukee comedy, Milwaukee Comedy Festival co-founder, and occasional WUWM radio personality Matt Kemple at his Underground Collaborative performance venue, along with uproariously funny local comedian/Levity Radio co-host Allison Dunne. The conversation ranges from how much the scene has improved of late, the city’s reluctance to accept homegrown comedy, and what should be done to shorten the gap between local and touring comedians.
See Allison perform at Frank’s Power Plant on Saturday, January 17 and as part of a January 24 showcase at The Underground Collaborative. For more information on the UC, event tickets, and other tidbits relevant to locally sourced humor, consult MilwaukeeComedy.com.
As always, this episode is brought to you by our friends at Ale Asylum, whose delicious beer was enjoyed by all three podcast participants. Music used in the episode comes from Milwaukee’s own Heavy Hand and Migo. You can subscribe to On The Record via iTunes here.