Not too long ago, the only comprehensive source for information about upcoming comedy shows, and the St. Louis comedy scene in general was a site called Comedy in the Lou, run by local comic and Fitz’s Open Mic founder, Kelsey McClure, until she left St. Louis. Now, she’s back after wandering the Earth for a couple of years, and she’s bringing a unique show to Blueberry Hill.
We asked Kelsey about her show, and St. Louis comedy. Then we stopped blocking the door to her elevator and let her get home.
“Mom Show!”, a story telling show for mothers and daughters is in The Duck Room at Blueberry Hill on May 13 at 9 pm. Tickets are $15 in advance and $20 at the door.
We’re assuming the answer to this is yes. You’re back in the St. Louis comedy scene, happy to be here?
Yes. Thrilled. This town is weird. I’m glad I get to be a part of it.
What’d you miss most about the city and the St. Louis comedy scene?
I missed the people. There are a lot of individuals who consciously devote their time and energy into making St. Louis a great place to be. I saw that to an extent in other cities, but nothing like here. Could be just because I wasn’t there long enough to notice, but I’m going to just go ahead and say St. Louis is an anomaly.
I missed feeling like what I did in a scene mattered. In Chicago, all I had to do was tell jokes. Which was great. There were shows, open mics, improv out the wazoo… there wasn’t a need to create opportunity. It was already there. You just had to battle until death to get it.
When I started the Fitz’s open mic, it was one of three open mics. I felt like that mattered. I felt like I was creating an opportunity. When I started an open mic in Chicago it was one of hundreds. It wasn’t a necessity. I want the things I do to have value, otherwise what’s the point?
Talking about my life on stage doesn’t feel valuable but maybe it could if I wrote better jokes.
Did you see anything in other cities that you wish you saw more of in the St. Louis comedy scene?
Yes. I wish entertainment outlets would pay attention to comedy. (Editor’s Note: Us too.)
What is exactly happening at your event? “Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me” meets the dining room table.” leaves a lot to the imagination.
It’s a story telling show, but what exactly is going to happen, I’m not entirely sure. None of the moms on the show are pursuing a career in entertainment, so that’s certainly a variable. They don’t have an act or even a set just a story. You can direct the action but can’t control it, which is something I’ll say I learned in an improv class. Also, life.
It’s a show meant to celebrate Mothers. Two of the Moms have stage fright so I’ve created games for them to play as opposed to just having them stand in the middle of a crowd of people with a microphone. It’ll be interactive and engaging. I said, “Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me” because that’s a show most people are familiar with. Plus it’s catchier than, “Mom’s telling stories!” I think?
What was the inspiration for the show?
My Moms; I have two on account of divorce and remarriage. Sometimes it was twice the frustration. More often than not it was really kickass to have two women, who think and operate very differently, ad part of my life. They have wonderful, tragic, endearing and hopeful stories and were both so good at sharing a personal experience, as though I, or whoever their audience was, were a part of it. True and genuine story tellers.
I’ve wanted to do this show for a long time and it finally just came together, so I ran with the idea before it was fully developed. Mother’s Day isn’t a particularly creative holiday. Brunch. Church. Dinner. A potluck.. Togetherness, Blah Blah. Mom’s shouldn’t be a hallmark holiday. Their day should be one of the most important of the year and Mom Show! is going to do just that, turn their day into a party not a chore.
Mom’s get in free? Have you devised a test to guarantee some sneaky freeloaders aren’t just pretending to be moms?
Mom’s get in free, yep. I have not but I suppose I will. Maybe they’ll have to provide a child’s birth certificate, photographic evidence, and a piece of art from their child between the ages of 2 and 13? All Mom’s keep that stuff on them at all times anyway. Right?
You pointed out that not all of the moms on the show are entertainers. Has that presented any particular challenges?
The main concern of the Moms is that they’ll be the butt of a joke at the show. This is not the case.
There will be jokes. But Mom’s are not the joke. They’re being celebrated and what better way to celebrate than with laughter?
Any truth to the rumor that you actually left St. Louis to avoid prosecution for a manslaughter charge resulting from a south city bar fight, and that you only returned to St. Louis because the investigating detective mysteriously died in a fishing accident?
All I’ll say is beer bottles are now made with the same glass as windshields so they shatter instead of break.