EDDIE IZZARD @ The Hollywood Bowl Wednesday, 7.20. -
Hailed as one of the foremost stand-ups of his generation, comic genius Eddie Izzard will bring his deliriously, dizzyingly, exhaustively, catch-your-breath funny show to the Bowl!
Already one of the most acclaimed comics of his generation, Eddie Izzard is developing an equally stellar reputation as a film, television, and stage actor.
Currently, Izzard can be seen in the third season of United States of Tara on Showtime, and he stars in Disney’s animated feature Cars 2 opposite Owen Wilson. He just completed shooting the buccaneer classic Treasure Island, starring as Long John Silver opposite Elijah Wood as Ben Gunn for the Syfy Channel.
Last year, Believe: The Eddie Izzard Story received an Emmy nomination. The original documentary, culled from thousands of hours of footage, documents his rise to fame from his early influences to now. Last year, Izzard was seen on Broadway in David Mamet’s Race and in the independent film Every Day opposite Liev Schreiber, Helen Hunt, and Carla Gugino.
Other recent film roles include Valkyrie, opposite Tom Cruise, MGM’s animated film Igor, Steven Soderbergh’s capers Ocean’s Thirteen and Ocean’s Twelve opposite George Clooney and Brad Pitt, and Julie Taymor’s Across the Universe, as well as lending his voice to Jerry Seinfeld’s Bee Movie.
In April 2008, he embarked on the largest comedy tour of his career, his show titled Stripped. In five months, he performed in 34 cities across the United States, including three nights at New York’s legendary Radio City Music Hall. Upon his return to the U.K., he broke box-office records by selling out a five-week tour in London’s West End in fewer than 48 hours. Stripped indisputably became the hottest selling comedy ticket of 2008 on both sides of the Atlantic.
In 2005, Izzard demonstrated his musical flair in Romance and Cigarettes, a Coen Brothers production directed by John Turturro, starring Susan Sarandon and Kate Winslet. In 2004 he was seen in the mystical western Blueberry, alongside Kenneth Branagh and Zoe Wannamaker; he delighted children and adults alike as the voice of the Sand Fairy in Disney’s Five Children and It; and in 2001, Izzard enjoyed great success in the U.S. and U.K. for his portrayal of Charlie Chaplin in Peter Bogdanovich’s The Cat’s Meow.
His big-screen debut was alongside Bob Hoskins and Robin Williams in the 1996 movie, Secret Agent. Other highlights in his feature film career include appearing in The Avengers with Sean Connery and Velvet Goldmine with Ewan McGregor. Izzard’s credits also include All the Queen’s Men, The Revenger’s Tragedy, and the voice of Nigel in the animated Disney movie, The Wild.
On television, Izzard last starred in the critically acclaimed FX Networks show The Riches, opposite Minnie Driver. Izzard also served as a producer.
Izzard has been hailed as one of the foremost stand-ups of his generation. His bizarre, tangential, absurd, and surreal comic narratives are lauded for their creativity and wit.
Izzard’s comedic musings have earned him top awards from Time Out and the Perrier Panel. Live at the Ambassadors received an Olivier Award nomination for Outstanding Achievement. He won the British Comedy Award for Top Stand-Up Comedian in 1993 and 1996, and Dress to Kill earned him a New York Drama Desk Award and two Emmys.
Izzard’s stage appearances include David Mamet’s The Cryptogram, the title role in Marlowe’s Edward II, 900 Oneonta, and A Day in the Death of Joe Egg in London and on Broadway, which won him a handful of awards, including a Tony nomination for Best Actor.
Since his first stage appearance on London’s West End in 1993 in the one-man show Live at the Ambassadors, Izzard has inhabited a unique world of his own “carefully crafted rubbish.” Live at the Ambassadors was followed by a succession of critically acclaimed shows, including Unrepeatable in 1994, 1996’s Definite Article, Glorious in 1997, Dress to Kill in 1998, and the 2000 production Circle.
Izzard recently ran 1,100 miles through England, Wales, North Ireland, and Scotland for charity. He raised $250,000 for Sports Relief, which helps the less fortunate in Britain and poor countries worldwide.
Izzard's style is heavily influenced by Monty Python, especially in his use of a stream-of-consciousness delivery that jumps between topics as he free associates on stage. He does not generally work from a script, owing to his dyslexia. Instead, he interrupts himself with new joke ideas, the characters he portrays turn into other characters, and he nonchalantly leaps from topic to topic. This often results in brief pauses in the routine which he fills with 'so, yeah', and other verbal tics that have become his trademarks.
Thinking aloud is also part of Izzard's ongoing attempt to make the process of writing the show itself part of the humour. As he put it in a 2004 interview with The Guardian, "It's the oral tradition. Human beings have been doing it for thousands of years". He frequently notes the reaction to a joke midstream by pretending to write on his hand ("Should be funnier"; "Lost them there"; "They didn't believe me"; "They didn't follow, never do that again", "never link those two[references] together ever again."), asks the audience questions, and verbally engages with hecklers.
Among Izzard's comic talents are mimicry and mime. He portrays God as an authority figure using the voice of James Mason and casts Sean Connery as Noah; these impersonations appear in many of his performances.
Izzard also imitates activities such as sawing wood, vacuum cleaning, and mowing the lawn, anthropomorphising the machines with accents and personalities. Successful impressions, such as his Scottish clarinet teacher, Mrs. Badcrumble, become running gags which recur in different shows.
He tackles topics both contemporary and historic, including frequent re-imaginings of historical events which result in scenes like 'Cake or Death: Church of England runs the Inquisition', or 'Jesus Ministers to the Dinosaurs'.