Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Comedian Focuses on the 'Real Stuff' for His Inspiration

Newspaper article Pittsburgh Post-Gazette (Pittsburgh, PA)

Comedian Focuses on the 'Real Stuff' for His Inspiration

Article excerpt

It's supposed to be a fairly mild weekend for the start of winter, and that suits Bruce Bruce just fine. The Atlanta-based comedian, who has visited Pittsburgh numerous times, prefers warmer weather.

"Man, I've been touring for the last 25 years, and Pittsburgh has always been a good city for me," said Mr. Bruce. "The people there show me a lot of love. But I have to tell you, the one thing I dislike is that it gets too dag-gone cold there."

Thankfully, temperatures in the 40s and 50s are forecast as Mr. Bruce comes to town for shows tonight and Saturday at The Pittsburgh Improv in Homestead.

Mr. Bruce, 48, is much more than a very large African-American man. He has crafted a style of observational humor that is sharp yet embraceable.

"It's an adult show, it's definitely not for kids," he said. "But I'm not offensive. I don't do anything degrading or insulting."

Unless, of course, you happen to be sitting in the audience wearing a hideous sweater.

"OK, yeah, I'll do that," Mr. Bruce laughed, recalling a clip that you can sample on YouTube. "But did you see that sweater?"

Much of his humor targets relationships. Family, marriage - even race relations.

"My comedy is not a show for just black people or just white people. My show is for everybody," he said. "I get a totally mixed crowd, and I get the same response everywhere I go. Our target was to reach a mixed crowd and then once they see me, we're at our best. And the crowds are getting bigger and bigger all the time."

He developed his act, he said, by watching other comedians.

"My favorite was Milton Berle, believe it or not," he said. "Growing up in the 'hood, I was a weird kid because I liked Milton Berle."

His press kit notes that he made his first appearance on HBO's Def Comedy Jam in 1993, followed by an appearance on the Showtime at the Apollo hosted by Steve Harvey in 1994. …

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