WXXI AM News

'Silly & Unnecessary Variety Show' brings levity to life in the time of COVID-19

Sep 18, 2020

Comedian Lori Hamilton
Credit provided photo

Imagine being quarantined for weeks inside a small (by Rochester standards) New York City apartment by yourself.

Well, there are a couple of cats, too.

"I went out last night to see a friend," said Lori Hamilton, "and they were, like, 'You did not tell us you were going out. It was not on the schedule.' "

The comedian has so many characters and skits bouncing around in her imagination, it's easy to see how she survived the COVID-19 solitude.

Hamilton's "Silly & Unnecessary Variety Show" premieres Sept. 18 at the 2020 KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival. 

"It's a combination of things," she explained. "My idea originally was, what if I did a 'Saturday Night Live' episode, except the only person in the episode was me."

Lorenzo, one of Lori Hamilton's cats, when he was a kitten. Her variety show includes cats telling kids' jokes.
Credit provided photo

Or if PBS is more your thing, Hamilton said Mr. Rogers also served as an inspiration: "I was creating in my imagination an alternate world in which things were fun and happy and things made sense."

Fringe fans will meet and be able to interact virtually with a host of characters, all portrayed by Hamilton. They range from a sedate corporate human resources director to a Midwest mom and a clueless bookstore clerk with their unique takes on the pandemic.

Oh, and be sure not to tune out before you hear Hamilton hit some high notes when she demonstrates what an opera program would sound like if it had commercial breaks like NASCAR.

Get tickets at RochesterFringe.com.  Four shows are scheduled from Sept. 18-26.

See more KeyBank Rochester Fringe Festival coverage here.