Entertainment

Mike Birbiglia’s One-Man Show ‘The Old Man and the Pool’ draws starry crowd on opening night – The Hollywood Reporter

Mike Birbiglia can certainly draw a crowd.

The Mark Taper Forum in Downtown Los Angeles hosted a star-studded pool party on Wednesday for the opening night of Birbiglia’s newest one-man show, The old man and the swimming pool. Ewan McGregor (with daughter Clara), Jack Black, Jimmy Kimmel, Nick Kroll, Allison Brie, Zooey Deschanel with Jonathan Scott, Rachel Bloom, Pixar Director Pete Docter, celebrity chef David Chang, comedian Pete Holmes, home Writer, producer and frontrunner Neal Brennan, Kristin Schaal, Jason Nash, Peter Paige, Kate Micucci, Michaela Watkins, Larry Wilmore, Taylor Tomlinson, Raviv Ullman, Sam Daly and Riki Lindhome are among the stars to be noticed. The Hollywood Reporter.

The show is Birbiglia’s latest tour The old man and the swimming pool and brought him back to the Theater Group Center, where he performed his Broadway hit one last time A new one on CTG’s Ahmanson stage. The new show explores questions about life, health and mortality as Birbiglia recounts scenes from her past using a doctor’s visit as a starting point. And, true to its title, he details trips to the YMCA and dips in its pool as well as an encounter with an elderly man in the locker room. (That particular story made Jack Black laugh at times.)

Mike Birbiglia stars in The old man and the swimming pool at CTG’s Mark Taper Forum through August 28, 2022.

Courtesy of Craig Schwartz Photography

Before the show, his friends walked the red carpet in front of the theater and weren’t afraid to share their praise for both Birbiglia’s work and his humanity. “Mike is a remarkable human being,” explains multi-denominational Seth Barrish, who has known the comedian for more than two decades and directed the show. “He’s really willing to talk really openly and honestly about the things he’s going through or has been going through.”

Docter, in the Bay Area town where he lives, made sure not to miss a Birbiglia gig. “His work is always drawn from real life stories, things that really happened to him and it is told in a really funny way,” he explains of the appeal of Birbiglia. “The hard work is weaving all of this together into a coherent story that leads to a feeling at the end. That’s what good storytelling is all about.”

Schaal said her longtime friend is “like any man” in that his work is so approachable but no matter how brilliant he is, he’s “very humble in the way he sees the world.” “. That way, “people feel like they’re part of the story.”

Bloom described it as authenticity. “It’s not a personality. It’s just him that he’s doing on stage. He’s both a stand-up and a storyteller, and that’s not all that common. Also, there’s a real arc to what he does and a real stage. She was quick to credit Barrish, who she’s also working on her own special at the moment. “Seth is a goddamn genius and the two of them together really know how to create a good theater.”

Their work will premiere in Los Angeles at Mark Taper through August 28. Birbiglia then embarked on a tour with stops in Pittsburgh, Cleveland, Toronto, Atlanta, Cincinatti, Columbus, Detroit, Nashville, Mesa, Arizona and Salt Lake City through November 19.

When it was all over, Birbiglia posted on Instagram that the night had provided “a dream come true.”

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