Minneapolis Jewish Humor Festival

Though it's never advisable to attribute any trait to an entire group of people, the enduring contributions made to comedy by Jewish artists loom too large to make good humor seem like a stereotype. Even the most cursory glance at the history of comedy in popular culture reads like a who's who of Jewish humorists. But despite this shared background, the artistic expression of comedy has proven as varied as religious practices. Proving this point, the 2011 Minneapolis Jewish Humor Festival will feature acts diverse enough to span from the orthodox to the irreverent. Opening with a performance by nationally renowned standup comedian Keith Barany, the two-week festival will showcase comedic expression in all its varied forms, including theater, music, dance, and film. Highlights include a screening of the acclaimed documentary Joan Rivers: A Piece of Work, the risqué humor of burlesque troupe Nice Jewish Girls Gone Bad, and a sweeping run through American vaudeville with NYC's the Grand Falloons. Local talent will also be represented with such shows as In Rehearsal, a one woman/multi-role piece by Alison Vodnoy; An Adult Evening with Shel Silverstein, a breakout hit from the 2010 Fringe Festival starring Lacey Piotter and John T. Zeiler; and an unlikely musical double bill of The Dead Composers Society (Twin Cities Jewish Chorale) and Babes in Goyland (featuring Amy Salloway, Neal Karlen, and Ashley Gold). With such a diversity of humor, the festival guarantees laughs for all, regardless of religious faith or lack thereof. À la carte ticket prices depend on the show and range from $7 to $15; discounted festival passes range from $30 to $40 (five-show pass) to $85 to $110 (complete festival event pass). Visit www.sabesjcc.org for a complete list of happenings, tickets, and showtimes. (Pictured: Nice Jewish Girls Gone Bad)
Sat., Jan. 15; Sun., Jan. 16; Wed., Jan. 19; Thu., Jan. 20; Sat., Jan. 22; Sun., Jan. 23; Tue., Jan. 25; Wed., Jan. 26; Thu., Jan. 27; Sat., Jan. 29; Sun., Jan. 30, 2011

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