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Comic Kathleen Madigan talks career opportunities, the Weather Channel and why she’d be a great bartender

By Stacy Nick
The Coloradan
April 2, 2014

If she hadn’t gone into comedy (and she’d been better at science), Kathleen Madigan would have become a meteorologist.

“I’m kind of addicted to the Weather Channel,” said Madigan in a recent phone interview before heading out to a show in Boston, where the forecasts called for more than 10 inches of snow. “I’m kind of in love with everyone at the Weather Channel. Those are my heroes.

A comic’s comic, Madigan — who will perform Saturday at Lincoln Center — has spent a lot of the last 25 years of her career checking the forecasts before hitting the road. Touring has always been a big part of her career. In her most recent one-hour comedy special on Netflix, “Madigan Again,” Madigan talked about going on two USO tours to Iraq and Afghanistan with a variety of other comedians and musicians including Lewis Black, Kid Rock and Kellie Pickler.

“I really like going on those things, whether you agree with the war or not,” she said. “I think that people forgot that they’re there… There are hundreds of thousands of them over there, and they’re not at war every day. They’re not out ‘snipering’ every day. They’re out on a base and doing a job, so it can get kind of mundane sometimes and they just really appreciate the shows.”

To Madigan, it’s that kind of audience reaction that makes even tours to some difficult places worth the trip. For some comics a network sitcom is the sign of success but Madigan aid she’s never wanted to be an actor.

“That kind of thing, I guess you can make a lot of money but I make enough money,” she said. “I don’t have diamonds or furs, I drive a 2007 Mercury, I don’t care about stuff. I just want to have enough money to just keep going. I just like traveling and … telling jokes. So as long as I keep doing that, I’m happy.”

But Madigan said she also would be happy doing her last “day job.”

“I was a fun bartender and I really enjoyed it,” she said. “I liked talking to people about nonsense. That’s really what I think I was put on Earth to do.”



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Comedian performs at The Lincoln Center this weekend

By Jessica Benes
Reporter Herald
March 31, 2014

Kathleen Madigan performed at an open mic night over 25 years ago and had so much fun that she took it up as her career and has been a comedian ever since.

She has been a guest on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Late Night with Conan O’Brien and the Late Show with David Letterman. And she is coming to the Lincoln Center this weekend for a one night event.

“It’s been a really good ride,” she said about her rise to fame. “I kept getting on shows, making a little more money, making a little more money.”

Madigan said she likes performing in Colorado because everyone is hip but not pretentious. She said her shows are a great escape from reality and every audience has a different vibe.

“It’s like going to a movie. If you want to forget everything for an hour and a half, then you should come,” she said.

She gets a lot of her new material on the road from what’s going on in the world or from her family, including six siblings and “about a thousand nieces and nephews.”

Madigan performed to soldiers in Iraq and Afghanistan in 2011 and 2013, which she said were the most unforgettable experiences of her career.

“It gives them something to do besides sit on the base,” she said.



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American Comedy AwardsKathleen has been nominated as ‘Best Concert Comic’ in this year’s American Comedy Awards. Kathleen is nominated along with Bill Burr, Hannibal Burress, Louis C.K., Jim Gaffigan, Kevin Hart, Patton Oswalt, Russell Peters, Brian Regan & Amy Schumer

Winners of American Comedy Awards are based on fan voting, but since this category was a late addition the winner will be determined by strictly by Twitter votes. Public voting for the “Concert Comic” award will take place beginning Thursday, March 27 at 1PM PST and will end on Tuesday, April 1 at 1PM PST. There is a limit of one vote per comic per valid Twitter account.


Here’s what you need to Tweet to vote for Kathleen:

Kathleen Madigan is my favorite Concert Comic and gets my vote in the #AmericanComedyAwards! @kathleenmadigan

NOTE: In order for the vote to count, your account must be set to “public.”

The awards ceremony will be held on April 26 at The Hammerstein Ballroom in NYC and will air on May 15 on NBC. For more info and a complete set of rules please check out the OFFICIAL RULES at



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Shawn Hansen’s Comedy Corner with Kathleen Madigan

By Shawn Hansen
The Valley Patriot
March 25, 2014

Kathleen Madigan, comedian from Florissant, Missouri will be performing at The Wilbur Theatre at 246 Tremont Street in Boston this Saturday, March 29, 2014 at 7:00 p.m. “I’ve been there a bunch of times,” said Madigan. “It’s one of my favorite venues because they let people bring drinks in. Everyone is happier when they have a drink.” Working at Comedy Connection and Nick’s in the past Madigan who is from Missouri said she has been coming to the Boston area for a long time.

In the comedy scene for 25-years, Madigan said she stumbled upon comedy while walking into a bar as it “accidentally happened.” From Missouri, she said I pronounced her states name correctly as some people usually say “Missoura” or “Mississippa” explaining that those names do not have an A on the end of them.

Recently performing in Florida, Los Angeles, Providence, Rhode Island and Palm Springs she will be in North Hampton the night before appearing at The Wilbur Theatre on Saturday, March 29, 2014 at 7:00 p.m.

“I’ll get in early enough to find some clam chowder and I know that sounds like a tourist but I don’t care,” said Madigan.

“Madigan Again” is the name of her most recent special that came out on NetFlex where the 25-years into the comedy scene year old comic said she likes because it is on whenever someone wants to watch it.

“I’ve had specials on HBO and Showtime and people go, ‘When can I see it?’ and I’ll be like ‘I don’t know.’ On NetFlex you can watch it anytime you want. It’s a great way to instantly reach people,”’ said Madigan.

The best part of putting a special together in the mind of Kathleen Madigan is the “alcohol after I’m done” but is more of the hype of knowing what city she will be performing in. stating the fact the jokes are obviously a very important part of the production of her specials, Madigan said she gets excited knowing what city she will perform in.

“I like to call my act pretty much like the movie Arthur,” said Madigan when answering a question about what her standup is all about. “It’s really fun. It’s not going to change your life, but you will remember a couple of funny things, and you had a good time, so there you go.”

Opening for Madigan will be Comedian Vick Henley who Madigan said is a New York guy from Alabama.



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Kathleen Madigan to bring her Midwest comic sense to Northampton’s Calvin Theatre

By George Lenker
The Republican
March 22, 2014

Comic Kathleen Madigan doesn’t feel it’s particularly difficult for women to make it in comedy if they’re good. But she does have a formula about the subject.

“As far as the audience perception, if you’re a woman, you start off at minus one,” she said. “If you’re a white guy, you’re at a zero, and if you’re a black guy, you’re at plus one. But that also comes with higher expectations. You’d better be good.”

But Madigan’s 25 years in the business probably mean she suffers from no such bias. She will bring her act to the Calvin Theatre on Friday, March 28. She chatted about her career
during a telephone interview last week.

How hard is it to keep coming up with new material after doing this for 25 years?

Because most of my material is stuff that really happens, as long as I’m still doing stuff, I will never run out of material. People say there are really only five jokes – or whatever that old saying is – that’s ridiculous. Because new things happen every day. How can you think that there’s only five basic jokes? If you think that, then you are not at all creative.

Are you surprised you’ve been able to sustain a career in such a tough field for so long?

Well, I still am able to keep making money at it. But it’s like I told my sister, I’m waiting for someone to come knock on my door and say, “Okay Kathleen, here’s the thing. We found out and now it’s time for you to get a real job.” (Laughs.) I’ve always said that I didn’t want to be 40 years old and be stuck in something I didn’t want to do and be crabby. So every year I have to see signs that this is going in the right direction. But every year the gigs get better and the money gets better so I just go okay, I guess I’m supposed to keep going.

You had a special, “Madigan Again,” last year. How long does it take to put together a set for a show like that and how do you go about it?

It’s basically just my act. I mean, by the time we filmed that, I already had more material than I used and that’s just what I picked for that special. There’s some stuff – I called them throwaway jokes –that are just okay, or there’s a time limit on them and they’re fine but they are not going to make the cut. They’re like B-sides. Maybe someday I’ll do a whole thing of B-sides. Jokes I wrote down and maybe did in some clubs but never recorded them in any way.

That’s actually an interesting idea. It might be cool.

Yeah but it also might be weird. (Laughs.)

You’re from St. Louis and started out there, when most big comics seem to start out on one of the coasts. How were there enough clubs to give you a good start?

Here’s the secret, golden key that I had, that really only comics know about: For about 1 billion years, there was a comedy chain called the Funny Bone. They still exist, there still about five of them around I think. But the headquarters, bizarrely enough, was in St. Louis. So once I got in with them, they booked me at all their clubs twice a year. And they had 12 at the time so that was 24 weeks of my year already booked. So all I had to do was fill in the rest with one-nighters or college gigs or whatever. It was the most fortuitous Irish luck-out ever. I say to my parents, “I’d like to thank you for situating us in a city where the biggest comedy club chain was headquartered.”

That is pretty amazing.

But even if I hadn’t got that break, everything is so centrally located. Just get in the car and in 4 1/2 hours I am in Memphis, or Chicago, or Little Rock, or Kansas City. I always feel really bad for comics starting out in Montana or Texas. It takes like 12 hours just to drive out of Texas. I mean, the East Coast comics have it good because they can just go up and down the coast. But if you’re in St. Louis and you have a car, it’s perfect.

Since you studied journalism and actually were a reporter for a while, let me ask you this: If you were interviewing yourself what question would you ask yourself that most people haven’t asked you?

Well, this is only because I think about it often myself: If I quit comedy, what would I want to do? And I think what I would really want to do – and I don’t think I’m smart enough in science (laughs) I don’t know – is be an FBI profiler. But I don’t think I could just do that. I think you have to be a cop first.

Well, you are Irish.

(Laughs.) Yeah but I’m not going to do push-ups.



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