The lines are real with Savitt at Harveys this week
June 30, 2011
When he’s not up for some role, Tommy Savitt is that suave guy on stage who is always trying to convince women, “You’re really missing out on this treat if you pass on this.” Is it an act? You’ll have to judge for yourself when you see him at the Improv inside Harveys Resort and Casino.
There are shows at 9 p.m. each night through Sunday, July 3, except on Saturday when we perform at 8 and 10 p.m. Erin Foley is our second guest star this week. I’m the host, Howie Nave, and if you find any typos in this column, blame my pronoun-fanatic ghostwriter.
Back for the first time in two years, Savitt went from middling his first time to moving up to headliner the second time he was here. Tommy is moving up the fast track, folks. I first caught a glimpse of what all the commotion was about at the Boston Comedy Festival. He won the whole thing.
Tommy won top honors the next year at the Seattle-International Comedy Competition. After that he headed west.
But he hasn’t abandoned his East Coast roots, by any means. Savitt in New York has played Carnegie Hall, Caroline’s on Broadway and just about every room on the eastern seaboard splitting his time between LA and NYC doing commercials and auditioning for television pilots and movie roles.
It’s hard to imagine that Tommy almost did not follow his path of comedy. He wanted to be a lawyer. Not just any lawyer, mind you, but one who is a Marine. Tommy was shooting to become a judge advocate general. It didn’t quite work out that way though. At boot camp on Parris Island, S.C., Tommy was too busy cutting everybody up with jokes trying to keep things light and lively for his fellow recruits (much to the dismay of drill instructors). Eventually he and the Marines had an amicable parting of ways.
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As Tommy put it, “I got in great shape, though. I was the most in-shape law student ever. As I was leaving, my drill sergeant pulled me aside, and berated me, telling me what a failure I was, how incompetent I was, how I was a quitter, that some unfortunate woman was going to marry me and bear me a child. Then he winked at me and said, ‘Don’t be a lawyer, be a comedian, Savitt.’ ”
Ironically, Tommy, in addition to headlining clubs and theaters all around the country, also lends his talent performing at military bases around the globe which include Afghanistan, Guantanamo Bay, Germany, Belgium, Japan, South Korea and the Netherlands. Good thing for us that Tommy didn’t become officer material because we wouldn’t be able to enjoy his unique sensibility when it comes to humor. Had he remained in the military probably would have been spending most of his time entertaining the others who were also tossed into the brig.
Another transplant from New York City, Erin Foley was a regular in such popular jaunts as Gotham Comedy Club, Caroline’s on Broadway, Stand Up New York in addition to the Improv and the Laugh Factory. This is her second Tahoe appearance.
She’s been around on the festival circuit too being one of the stand outs at the Just for Laughs/TBS Comedy Festival in Chicago and the Marshall’s Women in Comedy Festival. Foley has had the honor of being selected to perform at the prestigious Montreal Comedy Festival three times.
Not only has Erin had a successful career in comedy but she also succeeds on the small screen with several national television commercials under her belt, appearances on E! Entertainment, her own half-hour comedy special for Comedy Central, “Chelsea Lately” and “The Kilborn File.” You may have seen Erin on the big screen too appearing in the short films “Cried Suicide” and “Squeezplay.” Her favorite role to date (and one of my favorite movies as well) was in Cameron Crowe’s film “Almost Famous” that starred Kate Hudson (who received a Best Supporting Actress nomination). Erin played the role of Allison, a fact checker for Lake Tahoe Action wannabe Rolling Stone.