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Madigan plays Tulsa again

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Kathleen Madigan is one of the hardest working comedians in showbiz. It’s a cliché, but it’s true.

And she is immutably cemented in the business at this point, having appeared on almost every talk show you can think of in addition to touring, releasing comedy albums and recording three hour-long live specials.

“I don’t even remember where I’ve worked,” Madigan joked.

But she remembers Oklahoma.

She brings her quirky observations to Tulsa’s Brady Theater on Friday.

Her first time to the state was for a Tulsa gig with stand-up comedian Ron White. They toured Tulsa like they were on vacation — something Madigan tries to do during her inaugural visit to any city.

“We toured Oral Roberts University; we did the touristy things. We went to the big [Golden Driller statue],” she said. “But once you do all the touristy stuff in a town … you just start going back as a normal person.”

And she keeps coming back.

Why? Well, she’s quirky. Who else gets such a kick from oversized roadside tributes to oil and religion? The Golden Driller is 76 feet tall and touted as the fifth-tallest statue in the nation. Oral Roberts University is most famous for its 30-ton bronze sculpture called Praying Hands, which is also known as the largest praying hands statue on the planet. And Elvis played there once.

Madigan recently spoke to the Gazette via phone from a tour stop in Detroit. In her most recent live special, Kathleen Madigan: Madigan Again, she said loves the city because it has a lot in common with her hometown, St. Louis — namely, the murder rate.

“We usually flip-flop in No. 1 and No. 2 in murder. It’s usually Detroit and then St. Louis, which is why I feel so close to you people,” she said. “I understand the element that you live with that at any moment, shit could get weird.”

Having started her career as a comedian more than 25 years ago, Madigan has made the rounds in comedy and established friendships with top comedians who have also taken her on tour and television. She made her fifth appearance on Ron White’s Salute to the Troops, airing soon on CMT. But it is her trademark stand-up humor that has taken her from every type of comedy club you can imagine to television and accolades.

The long road is one she chooses.

“It’s just been a slow, slow, slow build … I never had a giant leap where I got to skip a bunch of steps,” Madigan said. “I would prefer to do it this way. Sometimes the faster you rise is just as how fast you will fall.”

Her comedy is a calm, perceptive summary of life and the aspects that go along with being an adult and an American citizen.

She claims to love Obama because he is always reaching out to the people to contact their representatives. However, she admitted she’d like a little help knowing exactly who those reps are.

“Because unless they’re hosting Shark Week or preparing for the end of the world, I am probably not familiar with their work,” she said on Madigan Again.

Her jokes aren’t dirty because those jokes are tired. So are relationship jokes, she said, and they should be left to people like Ray Romano because he does them right.

Madigan doesn’t delve too deeply into subjects. She casually sets herself up and delivers punch lines with a sly laugh. All of it combines to elevate her comedy to a funny, thoughtful place that her audiences connect with.

Print headline: All ages, Kathleen Madigan performs in Tulsa for a night of laughs that everyone can enjoy.

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