DELRAY BEACH – Bill Engvall is calling it quits.
One of America’s most recognizable and loved comedians has apparently decided to step away from performing stand-up comedy – prompted to do so, in part, by the death of a fellow comic.
There’s more about that in the story below.
Engvall gained fame in the late 1980s and early 1990s in large part because of his comedy bit requesting that “stupid” people be required to wear signs to alert the general public as to the kind of person they would be dealing with. Engvall famously tagged his jokes with “Here’s your sign.”
In 2003 Engvall, along with Jeff Foxworthy, Larry The Cable Guy and Ron White achieved comedy superstardom by releasing the comedy special: “The Blue Collar Comedy Tour.” A few years later came the sequel: “The Blue Collar Comedy Tour Ride Again.”
Comedians who consider themselves retired frequently can’t pass up the opportunity to step on stage at random times and places to scratch that comedy itch. Hopefully that happens with Engvall.
The world benefits from his folksy performances.
STAND-UP SPOTLIGHT – Jan. 4, 2022
Bill Engvall talks retirement, greatest fears, and how the Will Smith slap changed comedy forever
Bill Engvall is saying goodbye to the world of stand-up comedy.
Engvall told Fox News Digital why he thinks now is the right time take a step back and how the death of his friend and fellow comedian Bob Saget led him to think about what else is out there for him.
“I had a friend of mine call me the other night, ‘what do you retire for you’re at the top of your game?’ And I said, ‘that’s when I want to go out.’ I never wanted to be that act that people watching go, ‘you should have stopped last year,’” Engvall said.
Scott Darling’s second act: From Stanley Cup winner to stand-up comedian
Scott Darling, the retired goaltender who earned a Stanley Cup ring with the Chicago Blackhawks, had a tumbler of vodka and soda in his right hand. A framed photo from “The Muppet Show” was on a wall over his left shoulder, hanging just above an album cover featuring Bob and Doug McKenzie.
“I threw up before every hockey game I played professionally,” he said. “Every single one. I would do warm-ups, and I would go throw up before every game. That’s how nervous I was.”
What to wear to a comedy show?
If you spend any time hanging at stand-up comedy, improv and sketch comedy shows, you get to know the landscape pretty well. Beyond the two-drink-minimum and the brick wall backgrounds, the physical environment of a club – or even a theater when stand-up takes place – is a different animal for comedy than, say, when a band hits the same stage. A best example is checking out the crowd seeing stand-up comedy goddess Amy Schumer versus the crowd seeing goth gods Nine Inch Nails at The Met Philly for instance: same grand theater, but, respectively, lots of faded plaid and denim versus the void of Vantablack.
Mike Birbiglia’s Existential Exercises
One of Mike Birbiglia’s simplest and best talents is his instinct for leaping from sprawling existential ideas to prosaic little experiences. He is a master of translating between big and small things. In his work, our darkest fears and most intense loves become visible and accessible to us through absurd little daily realities: the way chlorine smells, the nickname we call our partner, the mysteries of safety signage, the chicken Parmesan served at Christmas. It’s a rhetorical mainstay, ubiquitous across ad campaigns and news reports and fairy tales and every stand-up joke about how men are like this and women are like that. But Birbiglia’s power is to make that leap seem easy without undermining its magic: Here’s the small thing that illuminates the big abstraction.