Bridget Everett Is Rock n’ Roll Cabaret with a Lot of Tits and a Heart of Gold

bridget everett special comedy central

is is one of the most dynamic and compelling entertainers around. Straddling the line between music, comedy and cabaret as confidently as she straddles some of her audience members during her performance, Bridget’s big tits, big voice and big personality create a show that truly needs to be experienced. In addition to touring with and performing at festivals and theaters from coast to coast, Bridget has a long-running residency with Tender Moments (a band that just happens to include Beastie Boy Adam “Ad-Rock” Horovitz) at Joe’s Pub at The Public Theater in New York. Luckily, Comedy Central has captured the indescribable experience of watching Bridget live for those outside the 212 area code. Gynecological Wonder premiers Saturday night at 12:30 am on Comedy Central (yes, yes, that’s technically Sunday morning) and should absolutely not be missed.

Amy Hawthorne caught up with with Bridget to talk about following your heart and your tits in life and on stage.

The Interrobang: When people are trying to describe your act, they come up with all kinds of different terms like “alt cabaret“ but how would you describe it?

I think it’s sort of like rock’n’roll cabaret with a lot of tits and a heart of gold.

Bridget Everett: You know, I’m not really much better at it, which is kind of a problem. I think it’s sort of like rock’n’roll cabaret with a lot of tits and a heart of gold. You know, if you were just out at a party, last call and there’s some big girl in the corner who’s had a couple of bottles of chardonnay and she’s wanting to make friends with everybody and touch and talk to everyone, it’s kind of like that. But not bad. That sounds terrifying! I would run from that person, but somehow when you put it on a stage with pretty lighting and semi-flattering outfits… This is probably why I’m 43 and my career is where it is, people ask me what I do and I’m like “ummmm, I don’t know”

The Interrobang: There does always seem to be like one guy down in front who is truly terrified and did not realize what he was getting into. Do you ever feel that, like Gallagher, you should have a “splash zone” warning posted?

For starters, I don’t think they’ve ever seen a six foot tall woman before, and not wearing a bra.

Bridget Everett: I’ve called it the splash zone before, because you never know what’s going to squirt out! There are people that will come and sit in the front row because they want to be touched and squirted on (for lack of a better word), but I really like to engage the whole room. There’s always the perfect person to talk to, and they may not be in the front row. Sometimes people that sit in the front are really eager or they’re just sitting in the front because their friend brought them and they’re like, “What the fuck is happening to me?” But it’s like anything, you wanna talk to somebody that’s interested in you but not too eager, and that’s the person I look for in the audience.

There definitely are people who just think “I’m gonna go to whatever comedy or show this is here tonight” and then I come out. Usually about 60% of the audience is looking at me slack-jawed for the first five minutes. For starters, I don’t think they’ve ever seen a six foot tall woman before, and not wearing a bra. There’s a lot of things you have to work your mind around before
you can just relax and enjoy the show, and I know that. That’s part of the fun.

The Interrobang: But you also do get people coming back time after time, who really fall in love with it. Do you know what it is that hooks some people in or what type of person tends to come over and over?

Bridget Everett: You know, I really don’t know what gets people to keep coming back. I mean, ultimately, I’m very happy that they do, but it’s a LOT. It’s a lot of show, it’s a lot of tits, a lot of woman, it’s a lot. At first it was a largely gay audience, I think that’s the way it starts with a lot of things in my oeuvre, but now young twenty-three year old women come and are like “ohmigod!” and then come back and bring their friends. And then mothers will come and bring their children. It’s just something different, so people come back and bring other people they know have an open mind and are willing to try new shit. But then there’s also these people that are sort of buttoned up and repressed, they get the most out of it I think. When I did “Rock Bottom” at Joe’s Pub, there would be theater subscribers, because it’s part of the Public Theater, and they’re there to see stuff that wins Tonys and Dramatists awards and then they’re seeing some grandpa lick whipped cream off my crotch. Usually they end up waving their titties in the air at the end and I really love it.

The Interrbang: Do you have to deal with that thing where on the one hand, you have people saying “Oh my god, this is so feminist and amazing, you’ve got to see it” and then other feminists saying “She’s not doing it right! She’s not the right kind of feminist!”

For five minutes I just walked around in a circle, like a dog chasing it’s tail thinking, “Oh my god, Gloria Steinem is here, oh my god, oh my god.”

Bridget Everett: Oh sure, I’ve gone through all of it. I’ve gone through that, I’ve gone through people from the cabaret world saying “She’s not one of us!” People make comments about my size and all that shit. But at the end of the day, I have to do what makes me happy and what I think is funny. Ultimately, I want my shows to be a fun great party and that’s what I keep doing. I’m psyched if not everybody in the room likes it because I’d rather have a reaction to it. That’s the kind of shit I like, shit that’s divisive or makes people say “What the fuck is that?”

I was doing a show one night and I was walking around during the song “Titties” and I turn around and I notice that these people had come in late and I fucking hate when people come in late, it takes me out of the zone for a second. But it was Gloria Steinem! Holy shit, she can come in whenever she wants! I could not believe she was sitting in the audience at my show!  For five minutes I just walked around in a circle, like a dog chasing it’s tail thinking, “Oh my god, Gloria Steinem is here, oh my god, oh my god.” That was the one case, this is a hero and what is she going to think of what I do? But she was so great afterward and she loved it. So if it’s good enough for Gloria Steinem, I think it’s good enough for all the other feminists out there.

The Interrobang: Was there ever a time when you wanted to just sing straight cabaret, like Barbara Streisand songs on top of a piano, not funny at all?

Bridget Everett: I booked a show at Feinstein’s at the Regency in New York and thought, “I just want to do a night where I just sing pretty songs, I just want to try that.” And then, you know, two songs in I’ve got my pussy in some guy’s face. Don’t deny who you are, that’s the lesson I learned that night.Along the way, it’s just been a series of people encouraging me to do what I like. And it just so happens that I’m like a T-shirt cannon – lock, load and explode. I can’t help myself, and why should I? Because it’s really fun! It’s a great way to earn a living. Not everybody gets to drink all the chardonnay they want and sit on people’s faces for a living, I consider myself blessed.

Gynecological Wonder premiers Saturday night at 12:30 am on Comedy Central. Do not miss it. Watch the trailer here.

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Amy E Hawthorne is a New York by way of LA comedy journalist and founder of ComedyGroupie.com. She's also a produced numerous stand-up shows, got a paycheck and a drinking problem from The Comedy Store and is convinced that the Big Avocado lobby are the ones who really pull the strings in this country.
Amy Hawthorne
Amy Hawthorne
Amy E Hawthorne is a New York by way of LA comedy journalist and founder of ComedyGroupie.com. She's also a produced numerous stand-up shows, got a paycheck and a drinking problem from The Comedy Store and is convinced that the Big Avocado lobby are the ones who really pull the strings in this country.