Michael Palascak performs with Kat Simmons this week at the Improv at Harveys
Special to Lake Tahoe Action
It’s always a nice feeling when someone has middled (or featured) up here and soon after they are headlining. Such is the case with Michael Palascak (pronounced PAL-a-sack), who has been on both The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and The Late Show with David Letterman in the same year, NBC’s “Last Comic Standing,” “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson,” Comedy Central’s The Half Hour and most recently “Conan.” He will perform this week with Kat Simmons.
Michael grew up in the Midwest in the small town of Wabash, Indiana, as he calls it, “The First Electrically Lighted City in the World.” He spent his formative years there, and then, after college, moved to Chicago to pursue a career in comedy. Not stand-up, mind you, but sketch comedy at one of the most prestigious comedy institutions ever — the world famous Second City in Chicago. Some of its alumni include Alan Arkin, Dan Aykroyd, Jim Belushi, John Belushi, John Candy, Shelley Long, Bill Murray, Harold Ramis and Joan Rivers. Michael would later develop his own one-person sketch called, “Pursuing Happiness: A bunch of scenes about people that moved out of their parents’ house, got a real job and got married.”
I believe this is Kat Simmons’ first time back in a while. We affectionately refer to her as “The Queen of Hooterville,” as she lives in the quaint town of Gardnerville just down the mountain from us. She is a positive woman, which mirrors her stand-up (although she does poke fun of herself for never taking herself seriously). Kat is versatile performing as a solo artist, as an ensemble in the very successful “3 Blonde Moms,” and as a producer of comedy and stage shows. She’s also a single mom, so one can only imagine the juggling she’s had to do.
Kat is what you would call a “clean” comic in the business, allowing her to perform at corporate engagements and family shows. She also has this likability factor, which is part of her appeal. She’s worked with top-notch acts that include Tim Allen and Kenny Rogers. Her comedy is “physical” in nature, utilizing her body as well to emphasize the joke.
She additionally teaches a comedy class for those wanting to try their hand at stand-up. It’s a good class for people aiming to be motivational speakers, too.
Howie Nave is the MC at the Improv at Harveys. The comedy club is inside Harveys Lake Tahoe. Shows begin at 9 p.m. on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays, and tickets are $25 plus fees, except Saturdays. Tickets are $30 on Saturdays. The Improv is dark on Mondays and Tuesdays. Must be 21 or older to attend. More information is available by calling 775-586-6266.
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Gov. Steve Sisolak on Thursday signed a new directive saying that fully vaccinated people don’t have to wear a mask indoor or outdoor in most situations.