Comics keep laughs coming

ap photo In this April 20 photo, a pedestrian walks underneath a marquee advertising a “Laughter is Healing” stand-up comedy livestream event at the Laugh Factory in Los Angeles.

LOS ANGELES — Whenever she’s down, Tiffany Haddish says she finds a good joke can bring her right back up.

That’s why the popular star of TV, film and stand-up decided to crack wise about ways to survive in the year of coronavirus in a nearly empty room recently while dressed in a bright orange pantsuit, protective gloves and armed with a can of Lysol.

“You told me you loved me, then bring me some groceries. I’m down to my last roll of T.P.,” she sang as she opened her act with a raucous tune she said she’d written just the day before to sum up what weeks of self-isolation has been like.

Haddish was performing at the venerable Los Angeles club the Laugh Factory, where she got her start as part of a kids’ comedy camp more than 20 years ago. No one was in the audience on that weekday afternoon, except four people including a guy videoing the show.

But people perched in front of laptops all around the world could tune in and many provided virtual LOLs while the cameraman chuckled in the background. Fellow comic Craig Robinson, dressed in protective gloves and a mask, accompanied her on piano and sometimes played straight man.

With comedy clubs from California to New York dark due to social-distancing mandates, comedians are finding ways to keep bringing the laughs to the public.

In New York, members of the Magnet Theater ‘s popular improv groups gather each night through the magic of Zoom to put on shows from their homes while audiences tune in through the platform Twitch.

The theater sells virtual tickets to its several shows a week, as do some other venues scattered around the country.


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