Brian Regan at the Ryman 


Two decades into his career and we still don't get it. Not the humor, obviously, as the doofy, family-friendly observationalist possesses a knack for self-deprecation like few others. It's not that we can't understand how he remains so humble and down-to-earth: Loving family, below-the-radar lifestyle and a DIY ethic have that effect. What we fail to comprehend is how Regan can be so unique and prolific a talent and not a global phenomenon of dehumanizing proportions. It's almost like his dim-witted onstage persona isn’t so much an extension as a completely fabricated character. And the Regan that makes fun of his own dim-witted persona isn&'t the Real McCoy either. A third, mega-brilliant Regan is at the helm, manipulating the other two--and us--like puppets. That evil-genius Regan keeps things successful yet manageable, while we're all just left wondering how he pulls it off.
Fri., April 3, 8 p.m., 2009


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