"I think clean stuff can be very funny. Dirty humor is easy, but in many places isn't acceptable," says Lipman. "People sometimes want very much to see comedy, but they'll be embarrassed by what they hear."
Lipman says that making people laugh without relying on risqué subject matter is much harder, but it is more fun. "It's still funny, because it's life -- we're all in this together, you either laugh or bang your head against the wall."
The Comedy Sorority performs at 7 p.m. Thursday, August 14, at the Glendale Public Library's Foothills Branch, 19055 North 57th Avenue in Glendale. The performance is free. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org for details. Quetta Carpenter
Farrelli's has the razzle dazzle
Jones-ing for a little drama? Gere up for some midweek music and murder at Farrelli's Cinema Supper Club, where the Wednesday, August 20, screening of Chicago packs all that jazz -- and then some. (Sorry, Renée, we just can't pull a pun out of "Zellweger.")
"Guests are encouraged to sing out loud, costume up, dance if they feel like it," says proprietor Wendy Farrelli. "It's lots of fun!"
Chicago rolls at 6 nightly through August 21 at Farrelli's, 14202 North Scottsdale Road, Suite 114, in Scottsdale. Tickets are $6, and menu items start at $3.95. Call 480-905-7200 or see www.farrellis.com for more information. - Jill Koch
Capitol Hill Kill Kult
Dark musical hopes for a hit
Guns don't kill presidents; assassins kill presidents. They also inspire intriguing musical theater. This weekend, Is What It Is Theatre opens its new season with Assassins, a controversial collaboration by John Weidman and Stephen Sondheim. Harmony, history and homicide collide in the dark musical, which interweaves the lives of the men and women who have killed, or attempted to kill, U.S. presidents. From Richard Lawrence, who tried to shoot Andrew Jackson in 1835, to John Hinckley Jr., whose bullet missed Ronald Reagan's heart by an inch in 1981, the subjects set their criminal motivations to song.
"I do not condone their behavior," says director Kim Hart, "but I do think this show does a fantastic job in explaining their behavior."
Assassins opens Friday, August 15, and continues through August 30 at Studio One Performing Arts Center, 4520 East Thomas. Tickets are $12 for adults, $10 for seniors, students and military. Call 480-994-9495 for reservations. - Jill Koch