New York-based comedian Michael Che, 31, has only been performing since 2009 and he’s already worked for two of comedy’s most beloved late-night television institutions. Last season, Che was a full-time writer for “Saturday Night Live”; earlier this month, he started a job as the newest correspondent on “The Daily Show With Jon Stewart.” On Thursday, he’ll add “performed at the Kennedy Center” to his résumé.
‘Saturday Night’ Fever
Che’s big break came writing sketches for the 39th season of “SNL.” His highlight reel includes “12 Days Not a Slave” (about a recently freed slave in 1863), “Black Jeopardy!” (with your host, Alex Treblack) and “White Christmas” (a trailer for “the first black holiday movie for a white audience”). Che brought a racially and socially charged viewpoint to “SNL,” but he also helped write a sophomoric sketch about a particularly stinky elevator ride, so don’t think he’s afraid to get silly.
It didn’t take Che long to get into the swing of things as “The Daily Show’s” New Correspondent. During his first report on June 4, Che went deadpan, rattling off — with serious journalist aplomb — some of the very real issues facing Syria. When Stewart asked Che to stop making him and the other correspondents look so bad, Che replied, “So you don’t want actual reporting, you just want dumb puns like President Fartar Al-A–hole?” “That’s what I’m talking about!” Stewart replied. Seizing the opportunity, Che added: “Syria? More like di-a-rear-ia.” And with that, a new correspondent was born.
A ‘Half Hour’ of Jokes
For a taste of Che’s stand-up, check out his episode of Comedy Central’s “The Half Hour,” which aired earlier this month. (You can stream a 10-minute clip from the special here.) In it, Che jokes about why he’s happy he didn’t go to college, how he doesn’t know anything about politics and lying on résumés. Those last two things make us wonder what he had to do to get the “Daily Show” gig.
Kennedy Center, 2700 F St. NW; Thu., 6 p.m., free; 202-467-4600. (Foggy Bottom)
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