Temple of Comedy

December 5, 2012

If you’re a comedian who was raised Jewish, there’s likely no stranger place to perform than a synagogue. It’s something Nick Kroll, right, mentioned repeatedly during his sold-out show at Sixth & I Historic Synagogue on Sunday.

“It’s so weird being on the bimah,” Kroll said, referring to the platform he was standing on, which is usually where a rabbi would read from the Torah. He riffed that Sixth and I is so old that “this has to be where the elders of Zion met” to figure out how they were going to control the media.

Sixth & I is becoming a go-to spot for comedy in D.C. “30 Rock’s” Judah Friedlander is slated for Saturday, the first night of Hanukkah; the venue has also been holding smaller comedy showcases in the basement, featuring local talent and lesser-known names from New York City.

I was raised Jewish-ish (we observed holidays but weren’t overly religious). Once I got past the initial shock of people drinking beer in a synagogue — from special cups that have coffee-style travel lids! — and making fart jokes, it stopped seeming so weird. It’s about time comedy got a holy place of worship in Washington.

Rudi Greenberg is Express' Weekend Pass editor and comedy columnist.
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