Editor’s note: This story has been updated from a previous version to reflect the cancellation of Brandt Tobler’s performances and the addition of Rick D’Elia.
Looks like we have yet another first timer to these parts: Jeff Dye. I don’t know if Jeff has ever been to Tahoe, but it is his first time on our stage at the Improv at Harvey’s. The Seattle native has garnered some pretty decent credits, having won the 10th annual Laff-Off Comedy Competition (which lead to Jeff being selected to perform at the prestigious Just For Laughs comedy festival in Montreal). KING-TV (an NBC affiliate) proclaimed him “Best Local Comedian.” Campus Activities Magazine called him one of the hot comedians of the year. Soon after he became a major part of MTV’s programming lineup. He hosted a popular MTV prank show, “Money From Strangers,” snagged a part in its popular spinoff, “Girl Code,” and hosted MTV’s “New Year’s Countdown Live From Times Square” with Snooki and JWoww last year. The show was viewed by more than three million people. They wanted him to star in “Teen Wife,” but he turned them down for fear of being typecast.
Jeff also appeared on the premiere of the TBS show “Who Gets The Last Laugh?” with Bill Bellamy and Kunal Nayyar, had his own Comedy Central special and hosted ABC’s “Extreme Makeover Home Edition.” He was also a finalist on NBC’s “Last Comic Standing.” Just this past weekend Jeff was at the premiere of the Cabo Comedy Festival, where Improv founder Budd Friedman was honored with a lifetime achieve award. Budd is the grandfather of the modern-day comedy chain, but this is also the 50th anniversary of the Improv being a fixture in the comedy world. Can’t wait to hear some of Jeff’s stories this week.
Rick D’Elia is up here and we’re fortunate to get him because he splits his time between Reno and Los Angeles and was hanging out in Truckee when I asked if he could go out of his way and spend some time in South Tahoe. He said, “Of course Howie!” So, we’re fortunate to have him here. Rick is a Boston fan of everything, especially sports, so it was no surprise when he coauthored a book with Andy Wasif called, “How to Talk to a Yankee Fan,” which New Yorkers wouldn’t appreciate (but they’d have to admit it’s a funny read).
Rick was a regular sketch performer on “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno” and his keen take on observational humor lead him to the finals in the 2000 San Francisco Comedy Competition. He’s appeared on “Stand-up Stand-up,” “America’s Talking,” “Grand Slam Comedy Jam,” “The Naked Truth” and “Inside the Extra’s Studio.” When not doing the comedy onstage in front of an audience Rick does a lot of stuff offstage, such as producing three stand-up specials for Showtime: “Going Native” (2009), “Green Collar Comedy Slam” (2010) and “The Godfathers of Comedy (2011).” He’s also the director, writer and co-host of the “Half Hour Happy Hour,” which is a late night comedy show on the CW Network in northern Nevada and California. A fine week of comedy with these two.