Comic Lewis Black performs in Tampa

April 18, 2013 

He's an author, a playwright, a movie actor and "Daily Show" commentator. So it's kind of surprising to find out that Lewis Black considers himself primarily a stand-up comedian, and that one out of every three days he's on some stage somewhere, grumbling hilariously about things that annoy him.

"I still do 120 to 150 shows a year," Black said.

He'll be at the Straz Center for the Performing Arts in Tampa this evening with his stand-up show, "The Rant Is Due."

Black came late to the stand-up comedy. He actually started as a playwright, and has dozens of plays on his resume. He was the playwright-in-residence at a small New York City cabaret-style theater, and he'd often introduce the plays.

He developed a reputation for hilarious introductions, and by the time he started seriously devoting himself to stand-up he was already experienced and comfortable in front of an audience.

The Straz Center is more than just another stop for Black. A few years back, he had the first workshops of his play "One Small Hitch" at the TECO Theater at the Straz, and made changes to the script based on comments and suggestions from the audience. The play is now scheduled to appear at several theater festivals around the country.

Details: 8 p.m. April 18 at the Straz Center for the performing Arts, 1010 N. MacInnes Place, Tampa. Tickets: $39.50 plus service charge and up. Information: 813-229-7827 or

-- Marty Clear

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