Comedians to debut at Harveys Improv
Special to the Tribune
Well, this is a first: we have not one but two new acts that make their debut here in Tahoe this week. Both are very exceptional and looking forward to having them here together this week. Headlining is Ben Gleib, who Esquire Magazine named one of “Six comedians who would be comedy’s next big thing.” He’s also a writer, actor, producer and a regular on Chelsea Lately on E!
Ben has been featured on NBC’s “Last Comic Standing” and “The Real Wedding Crashers,” “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson” on CBS, sold a pilot called “The Gleib Show” to Fox (produced by Saturday Night Live’s Lorne Michaels and NBC Universal) and released his first comedy album titled “Not Available in Stores” a few years back. No stranger to the Internet, Gleib’s online videos have received a total of more than 15 million views.
Ben doesn’t appear to have any down time either shooting creating pilots for television, getting network exec’s attention for green-lighting projects in between his stand-up work and frequent appearances on NPR and Current TV before it was sold to Al-Jazeera TV. Satirical by nature, Ben Gleib was a hit at the Vancouver Comedy Festival, The Laughing Matters Festival in the Netherlands, hosts and appears on numerous iPods and has written for the Radio Music Awards for ABC. Oh yeah, and Gleib was reportedly punched in the face by Brandon Davis after an argument over who was more “oily,” but I can’t get him to return my phone calls.
Like Ben this is Karen Morgan’s first time performing up here on our stage so you know she’s going to be soaking up all this beautiful weather and Tahoe in general. I’ve mentioned this before but not all comics start out wanting to be comics. Some had to go through several careers before realizing what their truth path would be and nobody exemplifies that more than Karen. Before being a stand-up comic full time (and a mom full time too) Karen was a very successful trial lawyer. I know of several comics who were good lawyers (the late Greg Giraldo comes to mind) before exchanging their legal documents (briefs I believe they call it) for a microphone.
Although she now calls Maine her home she still has that slight Southern accent that gives her away being originally from Athens, Ga. From trial attorney to full-time mother, the natural progression was to then enter the world of stand-up comedy. How did she break into comedy you ask? Well, endless nights of perfecting your craft doing those open mic nights for one. She was selected as one of seven finalists from well over 1,000 entries to appear on Nick TV’s “Search for the Funniest Mom in America.”
It was almost like the special was tailor-made for Karen. Of course she wowed America, which led to other television appearances on NBC, Nick Jr., CBS, NESN and Court TV.
She’s still licensed to practice law both above and below the Mason-Dixon line and currently lives in Cumberland, Maine, with her husband, three kids, two neurotic birds and a big dumb dog. That’s what her bio actually says. I’m looking forward to having her on my morning radio show because she sounds like a fascinating individual with some great stories. She can also be heard on other radio stations around the country, including a one-hour comedy special and clips on Sirius/XM Satellite Radio and the nationally syndicated “Big Show” with John Boy & Billy. Well, she can soon add “Howie’s Morning Rush” to her list of credits.