1. Stage

New on Tampa Bay stages: Jim Jefferies, Robert Kelly lead a whole lot of comedy

Raunchy moms, YouTubers and flamenco dancers also hit local theaters. Plus, Tampa Rep opens a Pulitzer-winning drama.
Jim Jefferies in an episode of Comedy Central's "The Jim Jefferies Show." [ALI GOLDSTEIN  |  Comedy Central]
Jim Jefferies in an episode of Comedy Central's "The Jim Jefferies Show." [ALI GOLDSTEIN | Comedy Central]
Published Sep. 11


It’s one of those weeks when comedians are flooding Tampa Bay stages with hours of laugh-out-loud material. Here are a half-dozen highlights.


America has this quirky habit of recruiting late-night hosts from around the world, from Trevor Noah to James Corden to Lilly Singh. But with comics like Jim Jefferies out there, is that such a bad thing? The brash Australian is a star around the world, headlining arenas in some countries and theaters in others, thanks to a handful of hit Netflix specials and his own FX series, Legit. His latest project is The Jim Jefferies Show on Comedy Central, a weekly show where he lets fly his many opinions on the news of the day. Odds are you’ll hear a few of them when he comes to town this weekend. $53 and up. 7 p.m. Friday. Tampa Theatre, 711 N Franklin St. (813) 274-8286.


When big-name comics need a funny face, they turn to Robert Kelly. He was part of Dane Cook’s Tourgasm, had a recurring role as Louie C.K.'s brother on Louie, and appeared in Amy Schumer’s Trainwreck, Denis Leary’s Sex & Drugs & Rock & Roll and Marc Maron’s Maron. Kelly has got more comedy credits where those came from, but he’s still most at home in a club doing standup, which is where he’ll be this weekend. $20 and up. 8 and 10:30 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Side Splitters Comedy Club, 12938 N Dale Mabry Highway, Tampa. (813) 960–1197.

Robert Kelly in his 2014 Comedy Central special "Robert Kelly: Live at the Village Underground." [Comedy Central]


Being a famous comedian’s brother isn’t always a bad thing. Look at the careers built by Charlie Murphy, Bob “Super Dave” Einstein or even Gallagher II. Tony Rock is definitely in that mold. Chris Rock’s kid brother has hosted and booked roles on a variety of TV series, including a self-titled sketch show. And while he may not be the most famous Rock, his brother wrote on Instagram this summer that he’s “the best comic in the family.” High praise. $17 and up. 8 p.m. Thursday, 8 and 10:30 p.m. Friday, 7:30 and 10 p.m. Saturday, 7 p.m. Sunday. Tampa Improv, 1600 E Eighth Ave. (813) 864-4000.

Tony Rock will perform at Tampa Improv in Ybor City Thursday through Sunday. [SMALLZ + RASKIND | Warner Brothers Entertainment Inc.]


For jokes only a mother could love, or make, the nationally touring show sees Angela Peel and Molly Kirk offer up a multimedia evening that promises to be full of catharsis, commiseration and validation with with all-original music, comedy, games and prizes. $25. 7:30 p.m. Sept. 18. Improv. (813) 864-4000.


Cancer’s no joke, but this annual benefit is serious about supporting people with the disease. All proceeds will go to the Florida Cancer Specialist Foundation to provide life grants for local people going through cancer treatments. The lineup features local funny people Catherine Maloney, “The Comedy Barbarian” Mike McCarthy and Dean Napolitano. It also includes nationally touring comedian Jimmy Schubert, who has appeared on The King of Queens and Entourage. The show is R rated. $27.50 and up, $100 more for VIP. 8 p.m. Saturday. David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts, 1010 N MacInnes Place. Tampa. (813) 229-7827.


Apparently, there is a theory that the popular YouTubers Danny Gonzalez and Drew Gooden are the same person. Others may have no idea who either of them is, but they have millions of followers, so look them up. To debunk that same-guy theory, the pair have teamed up to go on tour that brings brand-new comedy, songs, live comedy sketches, roasts and improv. They’ve brought opening act and special guest Kurtis Conner along for the ride. Only VIP tickets remain. $164.50. 8 p.m. Sept. 18. Straz Center.


When a couple is best friends with another couple, life is great! But if one marriage begins to crumble, things can get very awkward. That’s the premise of Tampa Repertory Theatre’s new production of Dinner With Friends. Tom and Beth set up Karen and Gabe years ago and were inseparable ever since. But when one couple heads for divorce, the ripple effect tests the limits of their friendships. Donald Margulies’ script won the 2000 Pulitzer Prize for drama, so expect to be moved. Opens Friday, with a preview performance on Thursday ($15). Runs through Sept. 29. $25, $20 students, seniors and military. Hillsborough Community College Ybor Campus Studio Theatre, 1411 E 11th Ave., Tampa. (813) 783-5465. For showtimes, visit

From left: Alan Mohney Jr. (Tom), Emilia Sargent (Beth), Ami Sallee (Karen), and Ned Averill-Snell (Gabe) in Tampa Repertory Theatre's production of "Dinner With Friend." [Courtesy of KaraGold, LLC.]


Flamenco may be a traditional Spanish art form, but Siudy Garrido has taken it global. The Venezuelan dancer and choreographer has worked with everyone from Marc Antony to Alejandro Sanz to the Los Angeles Philharmonic, bringing flamenco into a new era. She runs her own dance academy in Miami, but next week will be in Tampa for Flamenco Intimo, an original show with a live band and backing dancers. $30.88 and up. 6:30 p.m. Sunday. Straz Center.

Venezuelan dancer and choreographer Siudy Garrido. [KIKE SAN MARTIN | Kike San Martin]


  1. Lindsey Stirling will perform at Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater on Dec. 20. [Cara Robbins]
    The superstar EDM-pop violinist brings her third annual holiday tour to Ruth Eckerd Hall on Dec. 20.
  2. Florida Orchestra music director and conductor Michael Francis, left, celebrates with his wife Cindy and their five-year-old daughter Annabella. [OCTAVIO JONES  |  Times]
    The conductor, who grew up British, has been performing in the U.S. since he was 16.
  3. Criss Angel will bring his Raw: The Mindfreak Unplugged tour to Ruth Eckerd Hall in Clearwater on Dec. 13. [Courtesy of Jerry Metellus Photography]
    It’s the Christmas season at the Florida Orchestra and St. Petersburg Opera.
  4. Olivia Newton-John and John Travolta, shown here in the 1978 film "Grease," will make an appearance in Tampa on Dec. 14 for a film sing-along and meet and greet with fans. [AP]
    The forever Sandy Olsson and Danny Zuko will reunite for a sing-along screening on Saturday at the MidFlorida Credit Union Amphitheatre.
  5. Paul Reubens, a.k.a. Pee-Wee Herman, arrives for a Comic-Con panel in 2011 in San Diego. [GREGORY BULL  |  AP]
    The actor (Pee-Wee himself!) will accompany the 35th anniversary celebration at Tampa Theatre.
  6. Charlie explains to his parents and sister, Beth, that the best thing about church is that there are no Herdmans there. Pictured, from left: Sarah Krug as Mother (Grace Bradley), Amber Marino as Beth, Frank Miller as Father (Bob Bradley) and Jude Mys as Charlie. [Kristina Mitten]
    Live Oak Theatre presents ‘Best Christmas Pageant Ever'
  7. Benjamin Ismail, left, and Susan Maris star as Peter Shaw and Henrietta Leavitt in American Stage's "Silent Sky." [Joey Clay Photography]
    Parts of it play like a romantic comedy, but you will learn a thing or two about the woman who mapped the universe. | Theater review
  8. Sutton Foster accepts the award for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Musical at the 65th annual Tony Awards in New York in 2011. [JEFF CHRISTENSEN  |  AP]
    Plus, the Florida Orchestra, ‘Straight Up With Stassi’ Live and ‘A Tuna Christmas.’
  9. Nick Offerman will perform at the David A. Straz Jr. Center for the Performing Arts in Tampa on Dec. 7. [Matt Winkelmeyer]
    The ‘Parks and Recreation’ star, who performs at Tampa’s Straz Center on Saturday, knows his face is everywhere. He can’t stop it.
  10. The cast of "The Lion in Winter" at Freefall Theatre: Eric Brandon Davis, Joseph Michael-Kenneth, Alicia Thomas, Rob Glauz, Robert "Spence" Gabriel, Stephanie Dunnam and Joe Lauck. [Courtesy of Thee Photo Ninja]
    Freefall Theatre’s production of James Goldman’s script tells a medieval tale of family dysfunction. | Review