Five Questions with Cambridge Comic Jimmy Tingle
Jimmy Tingle hopes to send 2015 off with a laugh when his “Humor for Humanity” show takes over the Wilbur Theatre on New Year’s Eve.
Since the Cambridge-born comic and Harvard grad tends to deal with political issues in his stand-up, the past year has provided him with plenty of things to joke about on stage.
“Some of these issues, they come out of nowhere,” Tingle says. “Two years ago, nobody ever heard of ISIS or ebola. I always wondered, would it be wrong to introduce ISIS to ebola? Would that be wrong?”
Check out what else caught Tingle’s eye in 2015, his thoughts on the Pope and Donald Trump, and what fans can expect from his end of the year show.
Considering everything that went on in 2015, it seems like humanity could use a bit of humor right now.
Sometimes human progress and political progress are a few steps forward and a couple of steps backwards. For example, this year with the Supreme Court ruling same-sex marriage legal and constitutional in every state in this country–huge step forward. The Confederate flag coming down over southern capitals all over this country–huge step forward. Donald Trump running for president–a few steps backwards.
Speaking of Trump, what do you make of his presidential bid?
He’s currently in New Hampshire looking for new groups to offend. He’s literally on the offensive. I mean, even the Republicans are turning on him.
Other than the presidential race, what other stories did you pay attention to in 2015?
The Pope’s year of mercy, that was a big story this year when the Pope came and he addressed Congress… Poor John Boehner, he was directly behind the Pope weeping, realizing that the Pope is a Democrat. The next day he resigned. Obviously he realized he couldn’t serve two masters.
Another thing I like about the Pope, he’s following me on Twitter. As a Catholic, that’s a lot of pressure.
Looking ahead, what do you think people will be talking about next year?
Some of these issues, they come out of nowhere. Two years ago, nobody ever heard of ISIS or ebola. I always wondered, would it be wrong to introduce ISIS to ebola? Would that be wrong? And of course guns are going to be front and center as well.
As for your show on New Year’s Eve, do you have anything special planned?
This is the first New Year’s Eve I’ve worked in a couple of years, and I always love playing the harmonica at the end. I love getting the whole place singing, it’s a lot of fun and I really look forward to doing that this year in Boston.
Jimmy Tingle performs at the Wilbur Theatre on Thursday, December 31 at 7:30 p.m. A portion of the proceeds will go to benefit Globe Santa. Tickets are available at thewilbur.com.
This interview has been edited and condensed.