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Comedian Bill Maher returning to Rochester

Bill Maher will perform May 31 at the Auditorium Theatre.
Bill Maher will perform May 31 at the Auditorium Theatre.

Politically driven comedian Bill Maher returns to Rochester for a 7:30 p.m. May 31 show at the Auditorium Theatre.

While Maher is well-known for his often-controversial talk shows -- first "Politically Incorrect," and for the last 15 years HBO's "Real Time" -- he's never stopped doing standup comedy. (Although his starring roles in "Cannibal Women in the Avocado Jungle of Death" and "Pizza Man" seem to have brought his film career to a halt.)

Yet on his season-ending show last month, Maher expressed regret that his acerbic satire may be contributing to the divisions we see today in this country. "Yes, I have said things like that," he told his audience, "but I'm going to try to stop because I have learned that the anti-intellectualism on the right doesn't come primarily through stupidity, it comes from hate. Telling people that you think they're irredeemable is what makes them say 'You know what, I'd rather side with Russia than you.' "

Tickets ($39, $59, $79, $129, plus fees), go on sale at 10 a.m. Friday, Dec. 13, at, (800) 982-2787 and at the Auditorium box office, 885 E. Main St.

Jeff Spevak has been a Rochester arts reporter for nearly three decades, with seven first-place finishes in the Associated Press New York State Features Writing Awards while working for the Democrat and Chronicle.