Comedy at MontBleu
Rob Schneider rose to fame during the comedy boom in the 1980s in San Francisco. That was a fertile time for comedy, especially when you consider other Bay Area comedians who rose to prominence during that period (Dana Carvey, Will Durst, Margaret Cho, Bobby Slayton and the late Robin Williams are just a few of them). At the time, Schneider lived just outside of San Francisco and was a regular fixture at the popular comedy clubs. He eventually made it to New York City in the late '80s and onto the set of "Saturday Night Live," where he started as a staff writer before becoming a featured player and then a full-blown cast member from 1990-1994.
Schneider had some interesting characters on "SNL," but he's probably best known for "The Richmeister," the office worker whose desk was stuck beside the copy machine. The Richmeister addressed each of his fellow employees with an endless stream of annoying nicknames. Like many "SNL" alumni, Schneider transitioned into making movies — he in fact made a number with former "SNL" regular Adam Sandler, who is known for casting his buds in a lot of his movies.
While Schneider had shows on network television, he really shines in the online world — particularly Netflix, where he had more control over the direction of his career. The comedian has been coming up to South Lake Tahoe for years both as a performer and as a tourist. He's back at MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa this Saturday, March 10, performing stand-up billed as Please Join Me For An Evening of Lies. The show begins at 8 p.m., and tickets start at $25. (Learn more online at http://www.montbleuresort.com.)
Opening for Schneider is his long-time friend who also rode the comedy wave in San Francisco back in the '80s: Larry "Bubbles" Brown, who is one you'd call a "comic's comic" (which means other comics laugh at his stuff). Carvey and Williams would frequently use him as an opening act at some of the biggest venues. The first time I worked with Brown was in a small venue back in the late '90s — we were booked together in Santa Rosa and I couldn't believe how down on himself he was. I thought it was an act, but it was just Brown being truthful about himself. I think that's why the audience was laughing so hard — if you feel that your life is miserable and then see Brown, you end up feeling there might be hope for you.
When he's not bumming himself out, Brown has used his persona in small roles in independent movies. He was in "The Kite Runner" and Roger Nygard's movie "Suckers." He's also in a documentary called "3 Still Standing," which chronicles his career (along with those of fellow San Francisco comedians Johnny Steele and political humorist Durst) during the height of the comedy boom in the '80s. Schneider and Brown: a great show, folks.
Comedy at The Improv
At Harveys Lake Tahoe this week is the brutally honest Jerry Rocha. To say he doesn't hold back is an understatement. He's from the Lone Star State, finds humor in everything and is quick to point out whatever strikes him as funny. He was a semi-finalist on the seventh season of NBC's "Last Comic Standing," and appeared on both "Conan" and Comedy Central's "Gabriel Iglesias Presents Stand Up Revolution."
It's Rocha's delivery that pulls you in. While he has great topics, that delivery drives it home. For a sample of his stand-up, check out his album "Take That, Real Dad." Rocha likes to share his humor via non-traditional outlets — he appeared in a documentary that was on the Travel Channel.
Performing with Rocha is East Coast native Alex Edelman, who already is an international act — he performed an hour-long show ("Millennial") at the prestigious Edinburgh Festival Fringe in Scotland, and has also performed in London, Australia, New York, Los Angeles and Sweden.
Edelman has opened for Patton Oswalt and was a New Face of Comedy at Montreal's Just For Laughs festival. His additional credits include Comedy Central's "Comics To Watch" and "The John Bishop Show."
The Improv at Harveys takes place Wednesdays through Sundays at 9 p.m. Learn more at http://www.harveystahoe.com.