Brian Regan sold out Abravanel Hall in Salt Lake City. Not once. Not twice. He sold it out ten times.
Regan, famous around Utah County for being a comedian who can entertain without being vulgar, started out with three shows which immediately sold out. Shows were added one by one until finally the tour had to stop with ten.
Justin Sorenson, a sophomore who attends BYU’s Salt Lake Center, was one member of the audience at Regan’s opening night.
“The most important element of a comedian is being able to entertain without being offensive,” Sorenson said.
Janay Webber, a long-time fan of Regan, and a first-time audience member, agreed.
“Comedy-wise it’s hard to find clean humor,” Weber said.
Weber attended the show with her three sisters and parents. The audience included members of all age groups, ranging from children to grandparents.
Regan released his first stand-up album in 1996. Since then he has done work for Comedy Central and has recently completed his 24th appearance on “The Late Show with David Letterman.”
Starting off Regan’s show was Joe Bolster, a successful comedian who has appeared on late night television shows and has written for “Everybody Loves Raymond” and “Talk Soup.” Bolster warmed up the crowd using self-deprecating humor and jokes about his ordeal with cancer. As he said his farewells he used it as a chance to get some sales in, encouraging the audience to buy his CD but, “not to feel guilty just because I’m suffering through cancer.”
From the time that he hit the stage until the standing ovation that ended the show, Regan kept the crowd roaring with laughter. Blending some of his old work with new bits, the crowd was enthralled from Regan’s animated presence. Through his expressions, voices and comedic timing Regan was able to stretch out what would be average jokes into something the crowd would never forget.
In his style of work Regan touches on things he observes in his daily life. Katie Webber, who is studying business at UVU, thinks this is one reason for Regan’s success.
“He’s such a good comedian because it’s all from his own experience,” Webber said.
With sketches ranging from holidays and water heaters to hotel rooms, there seemed to be nothing Regan didn’t have a comment about. This went on to include bits about political issues (with one particular Herman Cain joke that brought applause from the audience) and Regan’s own idea to grant one “free kill” to every citizen in America. Through his viewpoint, “everyone would be a whole lot nicer to each other if they thought you had a free kill to use.”
Regan will appear in shows at Abravanel Hall until Jan. 28.