Sep. 21st, 2012

Comedian Brian Regan Talks Pop Tarts, Stage Fright & What Never to Do on Stage

Brian Regan
Photo Credit: Brian Friedman/Brian Regan
We’ve all done it before. Here’s the scenario:

Waitress: “Enjoy your meal.”
You: “Thanks, you too!”

It’s that awkward situation where you know your response was entirely inappropriate. What to do? Panic, acknowledge it or simply turn red? Just ask comedian Brian Regan, who has a unique talent for observational comedy, taking an everyday situation (from Pop Tarts to emergency room visits) and turning it into a laugh riot.
Brian Regan

Regan recently made his 25th appearance on The Late Show with David Letterman for the 19th anniversary of the show being on the air. We caught up with Brian recently to discuss how he became interested in comedy, what it’s like to be a “clean” comedian and how he has managed to still keep everyone laughing after all these years.
Brian Regan

JustLuxe: When did you first become interested in comedy?

Brian Regan: When I was sitting in college in accounting class, I was thinking ‘I hate accounting class’ so I switched majors to communications and theater arts. I took a speech class and tried to make my first speech funny.

JL: How difficult is it to come up with new material that does not contain profanity?

BR: My work is clean because that’s what interests me as a comedian. Music has different genres like pop and rock and it’s really the same with comedians. I tend to think clean so that’s why my comedy is clean but I can be dark and twisty off stage like when I am on the golf course. If I make a bad shot, that won’t make it into my Pop Tarts bit.
Brian Regan

JL: How do you come up with new material?

BR: I don’t know. I go through a normal life and keep my antenna up. I watch TV, go to the store and read things, but I am not always actively looking for something. Sometimes you just see something funny like one day I saw a van with two stickers. One said ‘We speak English’ and the other said ‘We delivery.’ Sometimes I take an everyday situation and observation and make the comedy about a combination of both. Now I am doing overreaction fantasies like how I wish I handled a situation like someone stepping in line in front of my kids at Disney. People don’t usually see me snap on stage.

JL: Your shows sell out all the time. What do you think it is that makes you so appealing as a comedian?

BR: I have always tried to be careful and figure out what I want to say and why the audience likes what I do. I try to keep coming out with new stuff. It’s impossible to have a perfect show for every audience member. I give you what I want to say and don’t worry if I have the perfect blend of old and new material. If you are laughing for an hour then I hope that I have been successful.
Brian Regan
Brian Regan

JL: Who are some of your favorite comedians?

BR: I love classic comedians like Steve Martin, Johnny Carson and Carol Burnett and today’s comedians like Bill Burr and Jerry Seinfeld. I always loved watching what Seinfeld gets out of mundane situations.

JL: Any advice to comedians just getting started?

BR: Don’t put your hand over your eyes to shield yourself from the light when on stage. I had stage fright for almost a year and then I took a look in the mirror and realized no one is forcing me to go to a comedy club. I realized it was something I wanted to do. Now I just hope the crowds dig me.

Brian Regan will be at The Wilbur Theater in Boston next weekend, September 28 and 29. For tickets or more information, visit
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Kellie K. Speed
Is a freelance travel writer with more than 20 years experience. She provides, travel and restaurant reviews, luxury pieces, product features for magazines such ... Luxury NEWS >