Category Archives: Catholic Comedians

Erin Foley

Erin Foley is a comedic actress, comedian, and writer and a regular cast member on TruTV’s How To Be A Grown Up. She just finished writing for the new NBC sitcom, ONE BIG HAPPY, which debuts in the spring of 2015.

As a seasoned comedian, she has her own Comedy Central Presents, as well as having been on Conan O’Brien, @ Midnight, The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, Chelsea Lately, Arsenio Hall and Last Call With Carson Daly. She has performed five times at the Montreal Comedy Festival, the San Francisco Sketch Fest, the Moontower Comedy Festival in Austin and the Limestone Comedy Festival in Bloomington.

Foley’s successful comedic podcast Sports Without Balls was recently added to the All Things Comedy network, receiving critical acclaim. Additionally, Erin has starred in many national commercial campaigns, a guest star appearance in NBC’s Go On, the acclaimed Tribeca Film Fest short Cried Suicide, and even a supporting role in Almost Famous. Erin has branded a unique position for herself in the industry as not only a gifted stand-up but a talented actress. Her versatility makes her one of the most sought- after women working the comedy scene today.

Dennis Miller

Dennis Miller is a five-time Emmy award winner for his half-hour, live talk show “Dennis Miller Live” which had a nine year run on HBO. He also wrote and starred in the Emmy-nominated cable comedy special “Raw Feed”, his sixth such special. He was the host and executive producer of CNBC’s “Dennis Miller”, a topical interview talk show featuring opinion and humor. Additionally, Miller has appeared on many conservative television talk shows.

Mike Birbiglia

In ten years Mike Birbiglia has grown from struggling comic to a popular talk show guest to a groundbreaking, original storyteller. The results? Two critically-acclaimed CDs, three Comedy Central specials and a Nathan Lane-produced Off-Broadway show called “Sleepwalk with Me” that was recently nominated for both a Drama Desk Award and an Outer Circle Critics Award for “Best Solo Performance.”

One thing has remained constant: Birbiglia puts on one of the funniest live shows in comedy. Said Nathan Lane of Birbiglia, “Every once in a while, someone comes along who renews your faith in the art of stand-up comedy. It happened when I first saw Mitch Hedberg, and it happened again when I saw Mike Birbiglia.”

Birbiglia’s comedy built him a cult following in colleges, then clubs, then concert halls nationwide. And it has earned him fans in the most unlikely of places. Ira Glass, host of the Peabody award winning radio show “This American Life” said of Birbiglia in a recent interview with the Chicago Tribune: “I feel he’s a big rising star. He’s somebody I feel, like, whenever we have him on the show I just feel, like, wow, he’s gonna be so much more famous than all the rest of us.”

Birbiglia isn’t dirty or a prude. He isn’t shocking or forgettable. He simply tells stories from his life in the most honest possible way, sparing no painful detail: stories like trying to shake the hand of a sports writer he didn’t realize was blind, or meeting his girlfriend’s parents in high school and then realizing that she had another boyfriend — and then meeting his parents. Sometimes Birbiglia’s details are so painful that the audience audibly gasps — to which Birbiglia often replies, “I know. I’m in the future also.” Thus the name of the tour was born.

What held Birbiglia back early on are some of the strengths of his present live show: his difficult-to-pronounce last name (he was once introduced as Mike Bahooski!”) and his awkwardness (“I have a habit of making awkward situations even more awkward.”)

Birbiglia has made numerous appearances on “The Late Show with David Letterman,” “Late Night with Conan O’Brien,” “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” and recently, yes, “The View.” Birbiglia’s popular blog, “Secret Public Journal,” chronicles his awkward adventures on the road. In 2007, Birbiglia released a live rendition of his favorite stories on Comedy Central Records titled “My Secret Public Journal LIVE,” which both Time Out New York and Time Out Chicago hailed as the “Comedy Album of the Year.”

In 2008, Birbiglia teamed up with award-winning director Seth Barrish and producer Nathan Lane on “Sleepwalk With Me,” a passion project he’d been developing under the radar for the previous four years. “Sleepwalk With Me” is a painfully funny one-man show about first love, denial and how the sleepwalking disorder that nearly killed Birbiglia might have saved his life. The New York Times called the show “simply perfect.” And The Boston Globe called the new stories “as honest as any Richard Pryor confession, and as engaging and inclusive as an old Bill Cosby record.” It’s that inclusiveness that has made Birbiglia a popular contributor on shows as diverse as “This American Life” and “The Bob & Tom Radio Show,” and has continued to make Birbiglia one of the most popular touring acts with audiences of all ages.

Jim McDonald

After graduating from Boston College with a degree in Marketing, Jim McDonald decided to forgo a career in Advertising and moved to Los Angeles to pursue his true passion – standup comedy.  Just 10 months after his L.A. arrival, he began selling jokes to Jay Leno for use in his ‘Tonight Show’ monologues.  Now, after 16 years of performing at clubs and festivals across the United States and abroad, Jim has become a highly regarded international Headliner.

His dry wit and wry sense of humor touch on subjects ranging from family, dating, travel, college, television and his Irish Catholic background.  His extensive writing and performance background in clubs, festivals, colleges and cruise ships enable him to tailor his act for virtually any audience.

Jim is a regular on both ‘The Late Show with David Letterman’ as well as ‘The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson’ on CBS.  He has also appeared on ‘Comedy.TV’/(Syndicated), ‘Carolines Comedy Hour’/(A&E), ‘The Jokes On Thee’/(Showtime) and ‘The Travel Channel’.  Jim was also a finalist at ‘The Great American Comedy Festival’ held at the Johnny Carson Theater in Norfolk, Nebraska – judged by comedy legends Dick Cavett and Robert Klein.

Colin Quinn

A true New Yorker, Colin Quinn has made his mark as a comic’s comic.

Quinn recently hosted Comedy Central’s Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn, his own late-night series in which he served as the show’s host, creator, and executive producer. The show was a roundtable forum in which Quinn and his notable comedian-friends discussed issues in a fast-paced, hilarious environment.

Quinn made his television debut in 1987 as co-host of MTV’s hit game show Remote Control, where he remained for three seasons. In 1995, Quinn landed a spot on the legendary late-night show, Saturday Night Live, where he was the anchor of “Weekend Update” for two and a half seasons. After leaving Saurday Night Live, Quinn returned to his Stand-Up roots performing across the country. In 2002, he starred in NBC’s The Colin Quinn Show.

Quinn made his Broadway debut in August 1998, in the critically acclaimed one-man show Colin Quinn: An Irish Wake.

On film, Quinn was featured in the documentary film Comedian with his good friend, Jerry Seinfeld.

Quinn continues to perform stand-up to sold out audiences around the country. He has also performed in Iraq, China, England, and Japan.

Quinn currently resides in New York City where he is busy writing his next project.

Tom McTigue

Arriving in Los Angeles from Seattle, Tom McTigue quickly became immersed in the national comedy scene, performing on HBO, and Showtime, as well as many appearances on Evening at The Improv. He continues to tour nationally and write for other performers including, Brad Garrett, Bill Maher and Gary Shandling.

An accomplished actor as well, he has costarred with a virtual whos-who of Holllywood. Cybil Shephard, Noah Wylie, Craig T. Nelson, Roseanne Barr, William Conrad, Drew Carey, Tim Curry, and Wayne Newton have all shared the spotlight with Tom. In 1997, he created and starred in Guys Like Us for ABC co-starring Robert Hays from Airplane.

Tom is also busy working in commercials. His face is instantly recognizable, having been featured in over 200 national TV campaigns, as the spokesman for everything from KFC to Miller Beer to VISA. Much in demand, Tom has been on the air, nonstop, for a whopping 17 consecutive years! Turn on the tube and chances are he’ll be there as well as doing voice-over work for radio and cartoons.

Kathleen Madigan

Just a few years ago, Kathleen Madigan was working as a waitress and journalist in St. Louis, Missouri. Now, Madigan has filmed her own Half Hour comedy special for HBO, and has been honored with the title and recognition few comedians experience, winner of “Best Female Stand-up Comedian” at the American Comedy Awards. She has appeared on the The Late Show with David Letterman, made numerous appearances on The Tonight Show, starred on the Bob Hope’s NBC Special “Ladies of Laughter,” was a featured performer on HBO’s “Women of the Night” and on CBS’s “NFL Comedy Jam.”

Having no intention of becoming a stand-up comedian. Madigan graduated from Southern Illinois University-Edwardsville with a degree in journalism. She worked in St. Louis, her hometown, editing in-house corporate publications and writing free-lance feature stories. Almost one year later, Madigan stumbled upon amateur night at the St. Louis Funny Bone Comedy Club. She gave stand-up comedy a try and continued to pound the local pavement looking for stage time.

After building confidence and enough of an act to emcee, the 24 year old quit her journalism job and hit the road booking gigs throughout the Midwest and south.

Mixing an even amount of talent and luck, Madigan’s career caught the eye of a major media publication. After a recent gig at the Tropicana Hotel in Las Vegas, Michael Paskevich of the Las Vegas Review Journal observed, “she’s focused and more importantly, a very talented young woman who, at the age of 30 is posed for big time success as one of the brightest new light on the contemporary comedy scene. She’s got instantly likeable stage demeanor, strong road-honed timing and excellent and original material.” The Los Angeles Times profiled her three times in less than a year noting, “She has a refreshing polished delivery and clever, well written material with an engaging girl-next-door quality.”

Working mainly in the United States, Madigan has also performed internationally landing a spot at the highly acclaimed “Montreal Comedy Festival” she tackled Canada, performed in London, England’s “Comedy Store” and recently entertained British, American and Canadian audiences in Hong Kong.

She’s also branched out from just stand-up comedy appearances. Madigan starred in a national TV commercial for US West and has covered numerous offbeat sporting events for ESPN2’s Sports Night.

As for the future… The Las Vegas Review Journal quipped “Catch her now and you’ll be able to tell your friends you saw her on the way up.” And Madigan’s personal goals seem quite certain, “I’d like to make a million dollars, retire, move to Ireland and drink as much Guinness as humanly possible.

Kathleen, winner of an American Comedy Award for Best Female Stand-Up, is a great corporate act.

Kathleen Madigan -Family

Kathleen Madigan -Drinking and Not Driving

John Wing

John Wing has been a stand-up comic for a long time. He has performed on many television shows and had his own specials. Ditto radio and had his own show on CBC in Canada. He has performed in over 40 states, throughout Canada and internationally. He lectures, performs stand-up corporately, privately and publicly everywhere for almost every demographic. He also sings, plays guitar and writes poetry.

Jeffrey Jena

When asked “what is the meaning of life?” Jeffrey Jena responds, “Nobody knows..

But–life is always referable to the alternative.
Other unanswerable questions like, “Is there life after death?” and “Is there a God?” are fielded with equal comic aplomb by Jena. “I have my own philosophy about life: I think; therefore, I am what I am; it’s sort of a Descartes-Popeye philosophy,” he proudly explains.

In his youth, Jeffrey was known as the class clown. “But,” he says, “when you grow up in a small Mid-western town ‘comedian’ is not an option they present to you on career day.” So he went to college and got a Masters degree in Education. This, plus his askew but well-informed perspective, served him well during his years as a teacher in Australia, Thailand, Japan, Italy, and inner-city Houston, Texas. It was in Houston, while teaching junior high school math & science that Jena’s comic persona ripened and he devised his E=M+$40.00 equation; meaning your Expenses equal your Money plus the extra $40.00 you always need but never have. He began performing at the Comedy Annex, honing his skills along with other talents like the late Bill Hicks and Sam Kinison. He then moved on to Chicago to study improvisational comedy with the legendary Del Close of Second City.

During the next decade on the comedy circuit, audiences continued to respond positively to Jeffrey’s thought-provoking humor and rapid-fire delivery that is reminiscent of his personal hero, George Carlin. He also acquired a reputation for having sharp social and political observations. Though he shies away from being labeled a ‘political’ comic, Jena-a Libertarian–is often quoted in the media at election times and has commentated on the Conventions for a number of radio stations.

Jeffrey’s journey up through the comedy ranks has been filled with good fortune. When he’s not headlining on the road two weeks out of every month, he performs regularly for corporate audiences, lends his services to numerous charity events, and adds to his growing list of radio and television appearances that include “The Jenny McCarthy Show,” “Evening At The Improv,” “NBC’s Friday Night,” and HBO’s “Short Attention Span Theatre.”

Jeffrey is an avid golfer (he boasts a 6 handicap) and a runner. He is also a newly-wed who notes that he found himself “suddenly out of the planning loop” for the Big Day when his wife asked what kind of cake he thought they should have. “Honey, I like pie. Couldn’t we have a huge wedding pie?”

Jeffrey has a seasoned, relaxed attitude about stand-up after 17 years. “Performing is the easy part…finding good material is the hard part. You have to be like a shark, always looking for food.” During the last couple of years, clubs around the country have hosted Jeffrey’s one-man show, “Grounded Forever.” The performance piece draws humorous observations from his seven years of teaching and 40 years of living. Like many experienced comics, Jeffrey has made some inroads into television and film and is currently developing a sitcom for a female comedian and himself.

Watching him on stage, it’s clear that he loves live performance. “I’ll never stop doing it, “says Jena. “It’s a real high. I keep thinking of that line in that movie about Patton with George C. Scott, where he’s standing on the battlefield and thinking about the war coming to an end and he says “God help me, I love it so!” Then Jeffrey laughs at the image. “I have a job just like anybody else has a job. And when I go home at night, I take out the garbage, pet the cat, and go to bed.

Shout Out to Jeff Jena for his performance for the Durham N.C. GOP Fundraiser. The client was extremely laudatory and said things like, “The best entertainment ever.”