The Complete History of Comedy (Abridged) – Review by Bonnie Goldberg

When you hear the phrase “Laughter is the best medicine,” believe it. If you are exposed to something funny, your nervous system sends an electric current to your brain, you give your diaphragm a chance to exercise itself and stimulate your muscles to make you happier. By thinking good thoughts and laughing more, the cells in your body can dance to a rhythm of well being. How can you accomplish all that: make a reservation for Connecticut Cabaret Theatre in Berlin’s “The Complete History of Comedy abridged. ” Weekends until Saturday, April 27, you are invited to titter, giggle, guffaw, chuckle, chortle, crack up, roar and even snicker.

A trio of ambitious souls, Rick Bennett, Chris Br0ooks and James J. Moran, take you on a journey back in time, all the way back to the caveman. Assisted by a team of costumers, Sue Emound , Russell Fish, Karen Gagliardi, Linda Kelly and Caroline Van Austin, the three men don dozens of appropriate gear as they travel through time to bring you the highlights of comedy. A combination plate of vaudeville and burlesque, this history lesson by Reed Martin and Austin Tighenor is meant to tickle your funny bone and any other place you’d like to mention on the body.

With a wonderful collection of video clips, we visit the comedians over the years and remember them fondly. Routines like Why did the chicken cross the road?, what would happen if men gave birth, a nod to the Three Stooges’ pie in the face, a visit with Abe Lincoln and a set of Congressional puppets, a session with Rambozo the clown, a slew of Knock Knock jokes, a few riddles to puzzle over and a lot of physical humor.

This running commentary on how humor has infected us through the centuries is a fst paced and funny forum that Bennett, Brooks and Moran are delighting and literally taking on the road. With a blend of satire and silliness, pratfalls and punched up one liners, the trio is having a great time in their ambitious task for your amusement. From the Romans to Shakespeare to The Donald, no one is immune from the elbow in the ribs. Artistic director Kris McMurray is having a good time in this red nosed tribute to the funny men and women from the past.

For tickets ($35), call the CT Cabaret, 31-33 Webster Square Road, Berlin at 860-829-1248 or online at www.ctcabaret.com. Performances are Friday and Saturday at 8 p.m., with doors opening at 7:15 p.m.
Remember to bring goodies to share at your table or plan to buy dessert and drinks at the concession stand onsite.
Get ready to laugh and slip on a banana peel as Rick Bennett, Chris Brooks and James J Moran skip merrily
across time to entertain.

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