Saturday, May 7, 2011
Comedy review: Jerry Seinfeld at the Winspear Opera House in Dallas (May 6)
Seinfeld got off to a rocky start, but he soon recovered and delivered a hilarious show to a crowd of adoring fans.
True to form, Jerry Seinfeld remained “Master of His Domain” of nihilistic but laughable comedy about, well, nothing at the Winspear Opera House Friday night.
The packed house warmed up for Seinfeld’s grand entrée with antics from Tom Papa, protégé host of the Seinfeld-produced NBC reality show The Marriage Ref. Laughter erupted almost immediately despite his playing it safe with slap-stick-enhanced, standby stand-up touch points: marriage, kids, drinking, and today’s buzz word in social media.
However, it was hard to tell whether the uproar was because of Papa’s comedic timing, or that the crowd was soaked in champagne and cocktails (if the hecklers later in the evening were any indication). Or, it could've been that many were simply whet with anticipation for Seinfeld’s imminent arrival on stage.
With a quick resetting of the spotlight, Seinfeld proudly pounced on stage in front of an already-standing ovation. He looked no worse for the wear at admittedly age 57 — with the exception of a shorter coif and a few gray hairs.
It was the first of two nights in town, and his attention to and interaction with the audience truly created a unique rhythm and tone for a crowd filled primarily with die-hard fans. Expectations were high.
Seinfeld had a rocky start with an almost-timid opening line. After coping with a few unruly audience members, Seinfeld quickly got into the groove. He even made a few shticks local, jokingly referring to the Winspear as the “Wind Spear” in a haughty tone and addressing the Christian conservative stereotype with which Dallasites are so often pinned.
From there, the signature rants – mostly all hilarious – ensued for a little more than an hour. Topics were influenced by his own aging: He was frustrated by public restrooms, America’s obsession with liquids (thumbs down to the blatant Smart Water plug on stage), and other fabled nuances from his reincarnated life now as husband and father-to-three.
After closing on an abrupt but crowd-pleasing potty joke, a standing ovation ripped through the rows, followed by a Q-and-A standup encore. Maintaining his long-regarded private lifestyle, little was gleaned from the popcorn-style inquisition, which ranged from thoughts on Donald Trump to an ambiguous answer about a possible Seinfeld reunion: “Reunion? Sure. When a certain four people’s careers are down the toilet, which we’re all actively working on now.”
All in all, it was much better than just “yada yada yada.”
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