by Joey Rinaldi
The Rogue Festival is almost here! This is the last of several Rogue Performer Preview articles that have been going up over the last few weeks. You will be able to find all of them, along with a preview article about the Festival itself, in our Rogue Festival category and you can find more info on our Rogue Festival event page over on KRL News and Reviews. Tickets for the Rogue Festival can be purchased on their website and you can find this year’s schedule.
Since I started doing stand-up comedy in New York City in 2016, everything I’ve worked towards has led to my newest solo show, Too Many Stories. As a stand-up comedian, I have always been driven to connect with my audience on a deeper level, but it was not easy at first. I have come a long way from telling shock value jokes in the early days of my career. But these jokes never felt authentic to me. In college, I wrote personal stories for my creative nonfiction classes, which inspired my first solo show Potty Training. The show was a huge success and sold out every performance, proving to me that people connect with personal stories more than just jokes. Potty Training was about a traumatic experience from my life and allowed my audience to find humor in my pain, which in turn helped them feel better about their own struggles. From that moment on my goal with my comedy has always been to make my shows a safe space where people can forget about their own personal trauma for an hour while laughing at mine.
Now, I am excited to be working on my newest and most interactive show yet: Too Many Stories. I have compiled a list of over 20 true stories from my life and during the performance, I bring out a whiteboard with all the story prompts. The audience then decides which stories I should tell. Every performance will be unique since I have only one hour to tell the stories and can only tell three to four of the 20 at each show.
This show is special to me because I am just as surprised as the audience is during the performance. The stories I share are so diverse that the vibe can change dramatically from night to night. I can’t help but getting myself into the worst situations, but with each one, I find the humor in my pain. My life is living proof that the formula for comedy is truly tragedy plus time. I have stories about accidentally working for a drug-dealing gang, getting my heart broken in high school, getting robbed at gunpoint in Mexico, and even nearly dying on my driver’s test.
But this show isn’t just about the laughter; it’s about the unique experience. You never know what story I might tell or what laughter will ensue. This show is a one-of-a-kind experience where the audience and I collaborate to create an unforgettable night of comedy.
Not only will you get to be a part of the creative process, but you will also be supporting a comedian who has a knack for retelling stories from his life, so I’d like to tell people that whatever they do while interacting at my show might just lead to my newest story at my next show! Telling these personal stories have surprisingly led to some cool and somewhat hilarious highlights in my career such as winning “Best Stand Up Comedian” at the 2021 International Canadian Comedy Film Festival and “Best Comedy” at the 2020 FRIGID Theater Festival in New York City. I have shared personal stories on the Drew Barrymore Show, NPR, Judge Jerry, and the Daily Mail, and I just returned from performing Potty Training in the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland, where I received critical acclaim for my work.
So, come join me on this wild and unpredictable journey as I share some of my most cringey and hilarious stories with you. The Rogue Performing Arts Festival in Fresno is the next big festival for me, and I am excited to bring my unique brand of comedy to a new audience. Don’t miss out on this opportunity to see a comedian with the most stupid stories for a night of laughter that you won’t forget…at least I know I won’t forget it.
WHAT: Too Many Stories
WHO: Joey Rinaldi
5:30 p.m. Friday March 3
6:30 p.m. Saturday March 4
2:00 p.m. Sunday March 5
5:30 p.m. Thursday March 9
WHERE: Spectrum Art Gallery, 608 East Olive Ave, Fresno, CA, 93728
HOW MUCH: All tickets 7 Dollars
RUNNING TIME: 50 minutes
If you love local theatre, be sure to check out Mysteryrat’s Maze Podcast, which features mysteries read by local actors. You can find the podcast on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google Play, and also on podbean.
Check out more theatre reviews & other local entertainment articles in our Arts & Entertainment section. You can also find more theatre coming up on KRL’s Local Theatre event page.