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By Indiana Reed
Special to The PREVIEW
The Community Concert Hall at Fort Lewis College celebrates the return of award-winning humorist Paula Poundstone with “An Evening with Paula Poundstone,” Saturday, Aug. 23, at 7:30 p.m.
Poundstone is considered one of the foremost comics working today, famous for her razor-sharp wit and spontaneity — characteristics that have made her a perfect fit as a panelist on NPR’s popular weekly news quiz program, “Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me.” “Wait Wait … Don’t Tell Me” is the winner of a Peabody Award for broadcasting excellence.
Poundstone began nurturing her stand-up comedy talent in 1979 on the Boston comedy circuit, though by 1990, she had moved to Los Angeles, starred in multiple HBO comedy specials and appeared on “Saturday Night Live.” She was the first woman to receive a Cable ACE Award for a comedy special for her one-hour HBO show “Cats, Cops and Stuff,” and the first woman invited to entertain at the prestigious White House correspondents’ dinner. Poundstone received a second Cable ACE Award for her self-titled HBO talk show series, as well as an Emmy for her field pieces on the PBS program “Life and Times.” She is recognized as one of Comedy Central’s 100 greatest stand-ups of all time, has won an American Comedy Award for Best Female Standup Comic, and in 2010 was one of a select group voted into the Comedy Hall of Fame.
For her live shows, Poundstone draws upon her own complex life: three children, multiple cats, a demanding job and crazy travel schedule, and aging, as well as her signature bag of neuroses. Every show is unique as she works with each audience, engaging audience members in humorous dialogue.
Her most recent comedy CD, “I Heart Jokes: Paula Tells Them” in Boston was recorded during a performance at the Wilbur Theatre in Boston and released on April Fool’s Day 2013.
As noted in the Boston Globe, “Poundstone improvises with a crowd like a jazz musician … swinging in unexpected directions without a plan, without a net.”
Also an author and lecturer, Poundstone penned “There’s Nothing in This Book That I Meant To Say” which is part memoir, part monologue, and part “laugh-out-loud” biographies of historical figures, including Abraham Lincoln, Joan of Arc and Sitting Bull. Her editorial pieces appear in Mother Jones, The Los Angeles Times, Entertainment Weekly and Glamour magazine.
In March 2013, Poundstone joined Whoopi Goldberg, Joan Rivers and several other prominent women in comedy for a feature-length documentary produced by Lions Gate for Showtime entitled, “Why We Laugh Too: Women of Comedy.”
Tickets for Paula Poundstone — $28/$34 — are available online at www.durangoconcerts.com or by calling 247-7657, or at the ticket office inside the welcome center at 8th Street and Main Avenue in downtown Durango. All sales are final.
Showtime is 7:30 p.m., with doors to the Concert Hall opening at 6:30 p.m.