Photo of Paula Poundstone by Shannon Greer.
It’s hard to wrap your head around the fact that a good third of Paula Poundstone’s seamless comedy show was improv. She would reach to the crowd to see what they did in their life and talk to them in a conversational yet hysterical way and then slide back into her routine as if she never stepped away.
I like comedy a lot, and I have rarely seen someone so gifted with crowd work, and her ability to bring us back to a past moment in the show was amazing. Each time she touched on something from a previous joke, the audience was in tears laughing. Even a few snorts. Only three were mine.
She touched on the bullshit outrage about Critical Race Theory and how hard it had to be for teachers. “Slavery existed. Don’t tell your parents. Some people like people of the same sex—let’s keep it between us”.
One of the most poignant parts of the evening was that she’s visited Florida and Texas and said that there are folks like us (liberal, NPR-listening, tote-bag-having folks) in every state, but they’re just outnumbered. It felt good to hear that. | Melissa Cynova
You can hear more of Paula Poundstone on her podcast, “Nobody Listens to Paula Poundstone.”