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Big-name comedians coming to Spokane area

Suddenly, Spokane seems to be awash in nationally known comics.

Jay Leno and George Lopez were added to the schedule last week. So I thought it might be worthwhile to run a list, just so you can keep your stand-ups straight:

Lewis Black – “The Daily Show’s” ranter-in-chief returns to the Northern Quest Casino for two shows, Jan. 3 at 8:30 p.m. and Jan. 4 at 7 p.m. ($55/$65).

Jay Leno – He’s been in the news lately with his upcoming prime-time talk show deal for NBC. Meanwhile, the guy can’t seem to stay away from the Northern Quest Casino (he was just there in March). He’s booked again for a show on Jan. 17, 8:30 p.m. ($65/$75).

Cheech & Chong – Cheech Marin and Tommy Chong, America’s original kings of stoner humor, reunite for their “Light Up America Tour,” coming to the INB Performing Arts Center on Jan. 24, 8 p.m. ($39.50/$59.50).

Norm MacDonald – The former “Saturday Night Live” Weekend Update anchor brings his dry brand of humor to the Knitting Factory, Feb. 27, 9:30 p.m. ($15/$25).

George Lopez – He used to star in his own sitcom and now he’s bringing his tour, “Tall Dark & Chicano,” to the INB Performing Arts Center, April 17, 7:30 p.m. ($49.50/$59.50).

Tickets for all of the above are available by calling TicketsWest outlets (509-325-SEAT, 800-325-SEAT,

Individual Spamalot-ments

Finally, individual tickets for “Monty Python’s Spamalot” are on sale for the show’s May 5-10 run at the INB Performing Arts Center.

Tickets for this Tony-winning comedy-musical went on sale Saturday; prices run from $30 to $65, available through TicketsWest outlets.

Previously, you could only score tickets as part of a subscription or group package.

New Tyrone Wells CD

You may not be familiar with him yet, but singer-songwriter Tyrone Wells is poised to become one of Spokane’s best-known artistic exports.

Wells is releasing his second major-label CD, “Remain,” on Universal Republic Records. It will show up in stores on Jan. 27, but it’s already available digitally (on iTunes, for instance).

He recorded it partly in London, working with a number of UK collaborators, including Martin Terefe and Iain Archer.

Wells was raised in Spokane before heading off to college in California, where he made a name for himself playing in L.A. area coffeehouses.

He released two indie-label albums and his third, 2007’s “Hold On,” was picked up by Universal Republic (the label that includes Motown and Universal Records).

“Hold On” went on to get exposure on many TV shows such as “One Tree Hill” and “Criminal Minds.” He’s apparently a prolific songwriter, having written 60 songs for “Remain,” whittled down to 12.

You can find out what Wells has to offer on Feb. 7, 8 p.m., when he is booked into Spokane’s Knitting Factory in a hometown show. Tickets are available through TicketsWest.

A ‘Harry’ little Christmas

Spokane filmmakers Jeff Lanctot and Manny Trembley will premiere their first feature-length film, “Harry Christmas,” on Thursday, 7 p.m., at the Bing Crosby Theater, 901 W. Sprague Ave.

It’s a comedy about a 20-something guy who loathes Christmas. Three angels help him see the true meaning of the season – along with three comical demons who try to sway him in the anti-Christmas direction.

Trembley, who also plays the main character, is a comic-series author and artist. Lanctot is a producer and director of short films and commercials.

Tickets are $6, available at the movie’s Web site, www.

A ‘Reduced’ Christmas

“The Reduced Christmas Carol (or, Scrooge vs. The Stopwatch)” has become a live-theater Christmas tradition in Spokane, and Interplayers is bringing it back Wednesday through next Sunday.

This is local playwright Ann Whiteman’s lightning-fast comic digest of the classic Dickens tale. You’ll see three versions in quick succession: a 15-minute version, a five-minute version and a one-minute version.

The whole thing takes less than an hour.

It runs Wednesday, Thursday and Friday at 4 and 7 p.m. each day, Saturday at 2, 4 and 7 p.m., and next Sunday at 2 p.m.

Tickets are $8 for adults, $6 for juniors and $2 for children 2-12, available at the door or by calling (509) 455-PLAY or TicketsWest outlets.

Interplayers season subscribers can get free tickets and should call the box office for reservations.

Reed McColm plays Scrooge. John Hart, Damon Abdallah and Maynard Villers play Everyone Else.


Jim Kershner can be reached at (509) 459-5493 or by e-mail at