I was nervous meeting Amy Schumer. She has been quickly building a reputation for being razor-sharp-witted, unapologetic and she doesn’t shy away from jokes about sexuality, race or anything else that might offend the easily offended.
I brushed up on Amy’s work before meeting her, she has some great stuff on the humor site, FunnyorDie.com, I checked out the Charlie Sheen roast on Comedy Central, then I listened to her most recent interview on Howard Stern where she was extremely candid. On his show, she discussed past and current boyfriends, past sex-capades and topics too racy for print. Ultimately, she was as revealing and candid as any guest I have ever heard, but most importantly, she never lost the funny. There is no greater heat than what Stern can give to guests on his show, and as I listened to that interview, it was clear in the end, by the way Schumer handled everything, she’s poised to become a future heavyweight in comedy.
Although this excited me more to meet such talent, it deepened my fear as well.
Backstage, the Amy that sat down with me was polite and filled with poise, it seemed I was meeting her alter ego.
“Do you want to put the recorder here?” she nicely asked, as I was too nervous to realize it was behind me.
We discussed her growing up on Long Island. She had no sign of the twangy Long Island accent, which she commented was due to a proper upbringing.
I laughed and continued on fumbling through questions. Amy stared right through me as I spoke. I asked her where she was going after her show, and she said, “Typically, back to my room and sometimes out dancing at Tryst in the Encore to dance to hip-hop.”
Schumer said she sometimes has a late night snack at the Peppermill, a Las Vegas standard for late night dining. Schumer said the Riviera crowds have been amazing and that she really respects the history of the performers who have appeared at the iconic hotel before her. She said there were usually a lot of locals and, overall, audiences in Las Vegas receive her material well and leave all laughed out. Amy said her show is a candid, open show about sex and life and relationships, and that it’s definitely an adult show.
As part of her act, it is clear Schumer doesn’t want any additional recognition for being female. It seems she isn’t looking to be viewed as anything other than funny, however, she did admit she hopes to inspire other women to do comedy, and see comedy, and maybe inspire these types of conversations with friends or partners.
Soon after this, I left, feeling not worthy of the room. Ultimately, the interview was kind of shaky on my part. How was she on stage? Brilliant. She was shocking and daring and engaging. She was dirty and naughty and smart and sharp. Every word seemed perfectly placed, each joke carved with a laser-sharp Ginsu blade and all the while being rather easy on the eyes.
Check her out for yourself at the Riviera, September 28-30 at 10:30 p.m. Call (702) 794-9433 for more information
By Roger Reed