Comic Relief

"Have something funny for lunch,"0 suggests Dave Johnson, managing director of the Avenue Theater, 417 East 17th Avenue. How, you ask? Simply spruce up your brown bag of leftovers with Laughs for Lunch, a weekly $5 comedy blast taking place between 12:15 and 12:45 p.m.

Today, acclaimed performer Edith Weiss takes the stage. Weiss is renowned for her creation of characters — reminiscent of Lily Tomlin's, but edgier — so they might seem like old friends to comedy buffs. Today Weiss pulls out her Best of... standup routines and jokes, which should bring tears to even the blandest of meatloaf sandwiches.

Weiss is red-hot these days — she recently finished a stint in Avenue's production of A.R. Gurney's The Fourth Wall and has been rehearsing Littleton Town Hall Arts Center's retake on a Neil Simon take: The Female Odd Couple. She'll also direct the Arvada Center's children's musical, Alexander, Who's Not, Not, Not, Not, Not, Not Going to Move, which opens in February.

Weiss trades Laughs for Lunch gigs with other Chicken Lips folks, standup comedians and improv comics. The Avenue is the best place for this kind of thing, Weiss maintains: "It's intimate but also has, you know, lights and a microphone." Unlike a lot of improv/standup joints, as Weiss can readily attest — having just returned from a weekend gig at a cowboy bar in Wyoming.

So get out of that office, get some fresh air and join Edith at lunchtime for a big bag of laughs.
Wednesdays, 12:15-12:45 p.m., 2007