Fine comic has jokes of 10 men | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Fine comic has jokes of 10 men

Howie Nave

Please welcome Bruce Fine, who returns to The Improv at Harveys this week after appearing on the “Tonight Show with Jay Leno” and on “Comics Unleashed.” He was also a Top 20 finalist on NBC’s “Last Comic Standing 4.” He also co-stars as one of the voices on the animated kids show, “Thugaboo” on Nickelodeon.

His TV credits include “King of Queens,” E! Specials and “My Wife and Kids,” and he was nominated for an Emmy as a producer for the “Wayne Brady Show.” Right now he’s a writer/producer at Wayans Brothers Productions.

But way back when, Bruce had his humbling beginnings as the class clown in high school. He broke into the professional comedy scene during the late 1980s after winning the Grand Prize on “America’s Funniest People.” It was his streetwise style of comedy, coupled with his boyish good looks (well, depending on who you talk to) that earned him TV roles in USA’s “Weird Science” and “Men Behaving Badly,” and movie roles in Miramax’s “Don’t Be A Menace In South Central” and Sony Pictures’ “Foxhunt.” He may be only 5-foot-1, but Fine has the energy of 10 men.

Bruce has guest-starred on many popular sitcoms (“Married with Children,” “Fresh Prince of Bel-Air”) and stand-up shows (“NBC Friday Night,” “Comedy Central”) and finished writing a script (with fellow comedian Chris Mancini) entitled, “Our List,” about a close knit group of friends who rally around one of their own to make his dreams come true when they learn he is dying.

Bruce was just seen last month on E! Special, “It’s So Over” about the top 50 Hollywood breakups, and yes, that was him starring in a new national Volkswagen commercial as a gladiator. He’s also developing a TV pilot called “Mike The Deadbeat,” which he created. But it’s his stand up that still gives him the most satisfaction. Each show takes on a different feeling as the audience dictates how the evening will turn out. Sometimes Bruce will just mix it up until he feels the audience is in tune with him as to what it is he is saying. Then again, sometimes he’ll just say, “Screw it; they don’t seem to know where I am anyway.”

Kat Simmons

Appearing with Fine every night this week through Sunday is Kat Simmons, a veteran of the national comedy club circuit. I’ve known Kat for years, and she always lends a hand for worthwhile causes; most recently for The BEAR League of Lake Tahoe, where she lent her talents performing for the fundraiser.

She has opened for a host of entertainers, among them comedian/actor Tim Allen and most recently Kenny Rogers. Kat has a unique talent for combining physical comedy with real life situations. I often compare her to Lucille Ball and Carol Burnett, with a tad of Jim Carrey. Kat also is a producer, booking some of the best comedic shows, and also does quite a bit of corporate gigs. Where does she find the time to come up here to perform, I ask you? Partly because she’s just down the mountain it fits into her hectic schedule so we lucked out.

Kat spent a lot of her formative years in Los Angeles, making the comedy rounds appearing on stage and on television before she decided to opt for a better quality of life raising a family while continuing her comedy endeavors and has never been busier.

When not on “the road” (or driving up the mountain this week from Minden) she hosts and produces her own show at The Carson Valley Inn called Comedy Night Live. I’ve performed there twice and always had a great time; the crowds are so appreciative. Her audience is the same toward Kat no matter where she performs.

And she has performed for everyone, ranging from tow truck drivers and fence contractors to doctors and engineers. You can say that Kat truly is an everywoman. Thanks for being here this week, Kat. And don’t forget that our shows now start at 9 p.m., except on Saturdays when we have two shows, at 8 p.m. and 10 p.m.


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