Comedian Natasha Leggero is back at Just for Laughs Montreal, hosting two shows from the All Access Live series. Mobtreal enjoyed a quick chat with her, while she’s currently on tour with her husband, Moshe Kasher.
Mobtreal: Welcome back to JFL! What are you most looking forward to this year?
Leggero: I’m really looking forward to the festival and to our Endless Honeymoon Tour. It’s the first time we’re performing it internationally; we can’t wait to see how Canadian crowds respond. It’s been so much fun—we do live relationship counseling.
Mobtreal: Really? How does that work?
Leggero: Moshe and I each do our sets, then people in the crowd—usually couples—come up on stage and tell us their problems. Through comedy, we help them solve their pet peeves. There was this one couple who couldn’t agree about their dog sleeping on the bed. We advised them to get a blanket for cuddling; when they go to sleep, the dog has to leave. They tweeted us to say it was working. (laughs) We don’t try to solve major psychological issues.
Leggero: I like hosting! Years ago, I was performing at a regular Monday night comedy show called Tiger Lily, and sometimes I had to host. I remember Jeff Ross gave me some great advice. He said, “Just tell them it’s your birthday.” (laughs) I think being a good host is being excited, telling some jokes and keeping the energy going. It’s like hosting a party.
Mobtreal: You’re known as an open and straightforward comic. We’re in politically correct times. Are there any taboos?
Leggero: It does get hard sometimes. If I do a joke about how I hate pit bulls, some people—especially my friends with pit bulls—might get mad. You have to just do whatever you want. But I don’t want to say things that hold people back. Some groups have worked hard for their rights. I don’t want to say negative words; they don’t contribute.
Mobtreal: You write and perform on tour, in specials and for television series. What would be your dream project?
Leggero: I really loved working on my series, Another Period. I’m fascinated by history. If I could, I’d love to be in another period piece… There are so many historical issues, like the massive gulf between rich and poor, that apply today.
Mobtreal: Montrealers are so proud of JFL. What does the festival mean to you?
Leggero: A lot of us started off here, at New Faces. I remember I was so nervous! I think I hid in my hotel room the whole time. Now I come here to connect, to see friends and hang out together. Old Montreal is so beautiful! A lot of us comedians don’t get to perform in Europe much, because of the language barriers. Montreal is kind of like being in Europe.
All Access Live, Hosted by Natasha Leggero
July 28, 7 & 10 p.m.
Tickets: $35.99, $49.99