HeHe! HaHa! Hardy Har Har!
After a long work week, it’s time to start laughing.
Three comedians will be visiting the Golden Isles this weekend with a goal to make you laugh till your belly aches.
Golden Isles natives Matt Owens and Lance Weiss, along with New York-based comic Brendan Fitzgibbons, will be coming back from New Orleans and New York for a one-night show at 8 p.m. Saturday at Ziggy Mahoney’s on St. Simons Island as part of their Summer Comedy Tour. Tickets are $15 online, and $20 at the door.
This is the second annual comedy showcase for Owens, who is the mastermind behind the event.
“I had this idea last year,” Owens said. “I was able to bring three New Orleans comedians with me.”
He said that it was such a hit he wanted to make it an annual event for the island.
“The talent that is coming is tremendous, (and) the comedy will be funny. It will be really funny,” Owens said.
Owens is from St. Simons Island and felt like coming back to his hometown to present his passion for comedy was something he needed to do. This year he will be bringing Brunswick native Lance Weiss with him as well.
“It’s so cool we get to go back home,” Owens said.
Weiss hasn’t been back to do any comedy for his hometown since he headed north about a decade ago. He is bringing fellow comedian, Brendan Fitzgibbons to perform on St. Simons Island as well.
“I’ve been doing stand-up for 10 years, and I have a lot of friends who haven’t seen me,” Weiss said. “And it’ll be fun to do it with Matt, but to my knowledge we’re the only two comedians to come out of that town.”
The two men fell into the comedy world while attending college.
“So I went to Glynn Academy, and I received a full scholarship for acting at the University of Mississippi,” Owens said. “I did a little bit of stand-up in high school and did a little more in college. When I got to college, there was an improv troop.”
Owens admitted that despite his few stand-up shows, he didn’t truly catch the comedy bug until he ventured out and saw other comedians on stage with successful careers.
“After (Hurricane) Katrina, I came down to the Mississippi Gulf Coast and saw what other people were doing. I decided to put some effort in it, and it finally took off,” Owens said.
After seeing those comedians, he continued to try comedy, even if some shows were not as successful as others.
“I think that’s kind of the key, you just keep hammering it out,” Owens said.
Weiss had a similar start.
“I started doing it in college,” Weiss said. “I worked in a comedy club in (Washington) D.C. It’s called D.C. Improv.”
Weiss’ motivation to pursue comedy came from the crowd’s reactions.
“Making people laugh is the best, once you do that nothing else compares,” Weiss said.
He wants to help people get through difficult things in their lives with laughter. He said that everyone has had unfortunate things happen in their lives, and he wants to be the relief from that.
“If you live past three years, something bad has happened to you, but laughing is a moment of pure enjoyment,” Weiss explained.
All three comedians coming to the island are well accomplished.
Owens was hand-picked to open for the hilarious Louis C.K. at historic New Orleans’ Joy Theater. He stressed how much he enjoyed working with the famed comedian.
“Last year, I opened for Louis C.K. and had a five-night run in New York,” Owens said.
He also regularly performs at New Orleans’ House of Blues and Howlin’ Wolf.
Living in New York, both Weiss and Fitzgibbons have seen and worked with their fair share of celebrity comedians.
“I used to do terrible open mics with Amy Schumer,” Weiss said. “In New York, all of the comedians are there.”
He explained that he remembers doing comedy shows in virtually empty coffee houses with the now famous Schumer.
“I’ve traveled a bunch and worked with a ton of famous people,” Weiss said.
And he’s not kidding, Weiss has been featured as a Top Four finalist on CMT’s “Next Big Comic.” He has also been on The Today Show, MTV, Bravo and more.
Both Weiss and Fitzgibbons produce and perform in a show called “Gandhi, Is That You?” The show is performed weekly in the lower east side of Manhattan where famous comedians stop in regularly to try out new material. Some of the previous performers include Louis C.K. and Jim Gaffigan.
The men try to use their background to create a show that adults will love and, of course, laugh.
“My comedy, Lance’s and Brendan’s — it’s all smart,” Owens said. “The material is for mature audiences.”
Owens tries to turn the jokes back on himself.
“Most of my humor is self-deprecating,” Owens said. “One of the reasons I’m self-deprecating in my comedy is it’s on me. I try not to hurt anyone’s feelings.”
He also tries to take current events and turn them into jokes that are funny for everyone.
“I take all of these hot button topics, and I usually try to find the joke, and I usually try to make it not offensive,” Owens said.
Weiss said that his humor tends to revolve around things happening in his life. He takes a little bit of each event that he finds humorous and adjusts the jokes to work for audiences.
“It’s like if you cook you try to add a little sugar here, a little something there, and you come up with something completely new,” Weiss said. “I always try new things.”
So if you need a laugh, come on out this weekend for the one-night showing of Matt Owens, Lance Weiss and Brendan Fitzgibbons, which is put on by Stand-Up NOLA and Gandhi.
“This stuff is really funny,” Owens said, trying not to toot his own horn.