Steve Martin and Martin Short shine at Stephens Auditorium


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steve martin and martin short

Tanner Owens

Outlandish musical numbers, nostalgic montages of past work and a perfectly executed stand-up routine by Steve Martin and Martin Short left a smile on everyone’s face Sunday night.

Their show, “An Evening You Will Forget For the Rest of Your Life,” which also employed the help of Jeff Babko and the Steep Canyon Rangers, brought the house down at Stephens Auditorium.

“The show was amazing, non-stop laughing. It was wonderful,” said Jackie Thompson, who attended the show.

To kick off their performance, a montage of Short and Martin’s most popular bits were played on the screen, much to the crowd’s delight.

The screen reading “See them before they’re dead!” set the scene for the comedy duo’s style of humor. Clips from Three Amigos and their various SNL roles were played, which provoked loads of applause and laughter.

The comedy heavyweights entered center stage and began with familiar self-deprecating humor and blows to each other’s egos that had the crowd laughing constantly. At times, the laughter and cheering was almost deafening.

Short started off strong in his roast of his longtime friend, remarking “Steve is so pale, he is so white. In the eighties, I think I might have tried snorting him.”

Audience members were not off limits to the two comedians, either. Three members of the crowd were chosen to learn the pair’s signature dance from the classic Three Amigos.

The two comedians did not hold back in their comments on everything from the audience members’ clothing to their dancing abilities, which at the end of the song, weren’t half bad.

Following the audience member dance number, the two retreated to two chairs placed at center stage to talk about their time in the comedy business and stories from their respective movie roles.

Short immediately let the crowd know what stories they would hear by exclaiming “the best stories are always the horrible ones,” before recounting a time where he had accidentally exposed himself to a makeup artist while the artist was applying a hair removal cream to his legs.

Throughout the show, the duo perfectly mixed the right amount of nostalgia and modern-day topics.

After twenty minutes of banter between the two comedians, Martin left stage to allow Short his solo act of the night. Filling Martin’s role on stage was Babko, a regular composer and house band member for ABC’s Jimmy Kimmel Live.

Babko accompanied Short on a piano positioned left of center stage, and was the butt of many of Short’s jokes. The two performed an original piece by Short that resulted in him removing his suit, revealing only a nude bodysuit that showed every detail of Short’s figure.

Martin returned to center stage, wielding a banjo and introducing the audience to the Steep Canyon Rangers, whom Martin has collaborated with since 2009. Martin’s song “I Can Play the Banjo” was met with emphatic cheers.

Steep Canyon Rangers played a piece by Bob Dylan and an original song following their piece with Martin that had me tapping my foot and humming along the whole way. The Grammy-award winning troupe garnered a standing ovation and left the stage, leaving Martin and Short to cap off the night.

The ending of the show was met with an array of different skits, similar to those from their SNL days. Short dressed as a judgmental child being held by Martin and lampooned various pop culture figures such as Kim Kardashian and politicians Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, Mike Pence and Nancy Pelosi.

The act had political moments, with jabs being thrown evenly at both the left and the right, which was refreshing. The duo did not show any bias towards either party.

The moral of the show was that no one was safe from Martin and Short’s witty remarks.

Martin and Short have been in the comedy game for over forty years. What made this show special for myself, and everyone else in the audience, was that they haven’t seemed to age a bit. The two were as energetic and original as ever.