Comedian Kevin McPeek will never say farewell to comedy, but he is bidding farewell to performing.
The Night of Comedy held in the La-Z-Boy Center on March 4 served as McPeek’s farewell performance. The event was filmed by Comedy Central.
McPeek invited magician Ken Dumm and ukulele-player Jen Shenberger to share the opportunity as well as the Meyer Theater stage.
“Beautiful room, beautiful crowd, lots of fun,” McPeek said of the event.
McPeek started his career in Michigan but moved to Los Angeles shortly after. He has gained public attention through performances on HBO and Comedy Central.
By mixing story-telling with animated facial expressions, he assures that audience members get pulled into his hysterical world and leave as fans. By avoiding foul language, his act is funny and appropriate for all audiences.
Despite the talent of turning a sip of water into hilarity, McPeek has now decided to take a hiatus from performing.
“It won’t be my last performance ever, but I’m not going to focus on trying to make my living as a comedian anymore,” he said. “I need to simplify my life a little bit, try to get healthy.”
The comedian is has performed in three more shows in March and will perform again on Saturday, April 2 at the Turtle Lake Nudist Colony in Union City, Mich.
McPeek lamented about the frustrations that come along with his career.
“It’s just the road, and the bookings, and the agents and the managers, and it’s just gotten to be too much,” he said. “You can only order so many pizzas, then it’s time to go home and eat some real food.”
However, McPeek admitted that he may eventually miss some of the craziness. He said he’s sure a time will come when he’ll wish to be winging down the highway on his way to a gig.
Besides, McPeek may be out of the business now, but that doesn’t mean he’s out for good he said.
“In 4 or 5 years if I feel like it I could come back into the business strong and still stay healthy, I’ll do it,” he said, “but otherwise, I just think it’s time for me to kind of simplify things a little bit.”
The idea to involve Comedy Central at the Meyer Theater performance began with McPeek. After seeing a film the company shot in Detroit, he said he contacted people at the station and pitched his idea.
“This show was sort of billed as my farewell show, so I thought it’d be really funny if the very first show they ever played of me on Comedy Central was my farewell show,” he said.
“They thought that was funny, so they were like, if you can film it that night there’s a chance we’ll use it.”
The last decision to be made for McPeek was what performers would join him. He said he’s known Dumm for 20 years and met Shenberger in Cleveland 4 years ago at one of her performances.
Both performers had the Monroe audience laughing.
Dumm combines the usual style of comedy with a blend of magic and audience participation. While remaining hilarious, his jokes stay clean and family-oriented.
“Nobody’s better than Ken,” McPeek said. “He’s just funny and great on stage.”
Shenberger’s act is hard to get off your mind – because you have to get her songs out of your head first.
At the Meyer Theater she performed songs about relationship troubles and being the only straight female softball player in high school on her ukulele named “Duke the Yuke.”
“You know, if she doesn’t have her own show in a few years it’ll be a crime,” McPeek said. “She’s just a talent.”
While McPeek has performed on Comedy Central before it will be Shenberger’s and Dumm’s first time.
“I’m really excited about it,” Shenberger said. “I haven’t been doing this as long as good old Kevin here. It’s not my farewell show.”
“It’s her coming out party,” McPeak quipped, referencing the softball bit in her act.
“But I was really excited when Kevin called me and asked me to be a part of the show,” she continued after a laugh. “I think he’s an awesome comedian, so to be able to get this opportunity was just amazing.”
Dumm said he thought the performance went great.
“I mean you can’t get a better show then that as far as the variety that was out there, and the crowd seemed to love it,” Dumm said. “And what a wonderful place to do it all at.”