On Stage: Arnez J. headlining at Helium

By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times  Arnez J. Because of the pandemic, live entertainment by national acts is virtually non-existent in this area – and it is no laughing matter. Fortunately, there are a few venues still presenting shows – and it is a laughing matter. Helium Comedy Club in Philadelphia has been presenting nationally acclaimed comedy acts on a regular basis for months....

On Stage: Akaash Singh thrives on having a live audience

By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times  Akaash Singh There seem to be two main types of standup comedians. Some give performances that are a series of bits – jokes and routines they have honed to elicit laughs from audiences. Others spend much of their time onstage interacting with audiences in a conversational way – talking about audience members’ dates, their clothing or their ethnic...

On Stage: Adam Ferrara was ‘driven’ into comedy

By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times Adam Ferrara Adam Ferrara, who will be headlining the Helium Comedy Club (2031 Sansom Street, Philadelphia, philadelphia.heliumcomedy.com) from February 25-27, is currently one of the top comics in America. His career as a top-flight standup comedian might never have happened had it not been for a pair of prescient activities by his mother and him in...

On Stage: Ahamed Weinberg shares a slice of life through comedy

By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times  Ahamed Weinberg There are times when you see names where the first name and the surname just do not seem to be a match – just do not seem to fit together well. Names such as Werner DiNapoli, Mikey Patel, Enrique Edmundsdottir, Chauncey Lopez or Jean-Luc Kratingdaenggym might leave you scratching your head. Some might make you wonder about a possible...

On Stage: Broussard takes unusual path to comedy

By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times  Matthew Broussard The COVID-19 pandemic has forced the area entertainment scene into a horrible situation. The almost non-existent availability of live shows in Philadelphia featuring national acts is no laughing matter. But shows that are on the list of coming attractions are laughing matters – because they are shows at some of the city’s well-respected...

On Stage: More options this weekend for live entertainment

By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times  Ian Bagg There is a Jamaican restaurant in Tampa’s Ybor City called Chephas’ Hot Spot. Run by Rastaman Cephas Gilbert, it features delightful and authentic food dished from the island. What it doesn’t have is a menu.  The meals all include fresh vegetables of the day along with beans and rice. There are no choices.   The only choice Cephas...

On Stage: Michael Borowski makes solo debut at Sellersville

By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times  Michael Borowski When Michael Borowski performs at the Sellersville Theater (24 West Temple Avenue, Sellersville, 215-257-5808, www.st94.com) on February 2, it will be as close as possible to what he could call a hometown show. The talented pianist grew up 10 minutes southwest of Sellersville in Souderton and now lives about 15 minutes south of the...

On Stage: Philly legend Kweder finds way to keep performing, despite pandemic

By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times  Kenn Kweder Many entertainers are “legends in their own minds” – an idiom that means “believing that they are of greater importance than is actually the case” or simply put…being delusional about their popularity. Kenn Kweder is not a “legend in his own mind” – but he is a “legend in his own city.” The veteran rocker has been...

On Stage: Temple’s Micah Graves launches music career at challenging time

By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times  Micah Graves It’s always difficult for new artists to get their careers off the ground – even in normal times. Right now, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, it has become increasingly difficult. It’s hard to deal with the recording of an album because of studio closures and musicians hampered by pandemic quarantines. It’s hard to introduce...

On Stage: Reed offers a welcome laugh with a show at Sellersville

By Denny Dyroff, Entertainment Editor, The Times Earl David Reed If you view the COVID-19 pandemic as a tropical storm with gale force winds and live entertainment venues as boats, venues throughout Pennsylvania have been tightly secured to their docks while those in Philadelphia have been completely taken out of the water. Philly’s tight restrictions have made it impossible for any venue to stage...