Jason Dudey: A Name That Gets Laughs




Are you turning into your parents as you get older?

My father has an iPad and Brian has one. But my mother and I use it for Face Time.
Brian cannot watch us because my mother and I are in the exact same position on
the couch with the iPad propped up on the coffee table, and we will stay on for
two hours together watching bad TV and talking. I am turning into my mother.

So he knows what his future looks like in 20 years.

He said to me the other day, “Does your mother just scream your father’s name
every three seconds for no reason?” Yes. Get used to it. My mother, every
couple of minutes yells, “Don!” and she doesn’t really need
anything. She just likes to know where he is. I’m the same way. If Brian is out
of the room for more than five minutes, I do the same thing. We live in an
apartment. It’s not that hard to figure out where he is. I get nervous. Where
did he go?! Where’d he go?!

Let’s talk about the Come Out Laughing Tour, a show that
you produce.

The show is so important to me. My friend, Erin Foley, has a show called Gays R
Us at the Hollywood Improv. It’s a great show. She wanted to start another show,
and it’s a lot of work. So she said, “Jason, do you want to start the show and
I can help you?” She was so helpful getting it started because I didn’t know
what to do. I didn’t know how to find a community. Well now it’s been going on
every last Wednesday of the month at the Long Beach Laugh Factory for the last
two years and it is so much fun. Then, I  started taking it on the road and took Erin with me. We’ve done
it in D.C., North Carolina, Kansas, and Dallas. What I want to do with it is
take it to smaller cities that don’t have as much gay entertainment. We did a
show in Wichita, Kansas and this woman and her partner drove over two hours and
they were in tears at the end of the show because they had never seen gay
people on stage. They had been together for like 30 years and weren’t out to
their families. That’s what I want to do. We get spoiled in New York, L.A., and
D.C. Everyone is gay. It’s no big deal. But in these smaller cities, it is huge
to see openly gay people walk up on stage and grab that mic. It’s so rewarding.
It’s a labor of love.

Come Out Laughing showcases both gay and straight comics. It isn’t just for gay
people.. It bridges the gap between gay and straight audiences.

Isn’t our goal as gay people to be accepted by everyone? If I’m doing a gay-friendly
show, how can I exclude people if the one thing I’m fighting for is to not be
excluded anymore?

That’s a great point.

I bill the show as “Some gay. Some straight. All hilarious.” The Long Beach
Laugh Factory has been so supportive. We have a lot of regulars that aren’t
gay. They just know it’s a good show and a fun night out. Email me at [email protected]
if you want a show in your city.  

What are you up to now both personally and

I am on tour with Kathleen Madigan, which, could I be any luckier? The woman is
so funny and so nice on and off stage. Her audience is middle-American, beer
drinking, straight people, and I love that she took me. I was nervous to do gay
material, and she encouraged me to be myself. It means a lot that a comedian in
mainstream America took the gay guy out as her opener. She talks about stuff
that we all relate to. That’s what I want my jokes to be about, too. She’s
doing theaters now instead of clubs. It’s nice to see someone get rewarded for
all of her hard work. I’m so happy for her. I also just recorded a CD. It’s
called Major Dudey. It’ll be out in a month!
Just in time for the holidays, hint hint.

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Tags: Comedy