Have you caught the staid, old Gray Lady cracking a smile? Have you heard her chuckle? Can it be that somebody is really writing funny stories at The New York Times? Well, if you’re reading a Neil Genzlinger piece, pretty soon you’ll be laughing too.
The New York Times is not a humorous publication — heaven forfend! — but Neil Genzlinger, a television (and occasionally film and theater) critic, has what amounts to a special dispensation from the Gray Lady to write humorous reviews. His editors, he says, are willing “to make a leap of faith: If we run this particularly ridiculous Genzlinger piece on our pages, people will read it and they’ll understand that it’s humor, and they’ll like it.”
The reviewer of other people’s performances is now about to leap out of the critic’s seat and onto the boards himself. On July 16, 19 and 20, Genzlinger will perform his own show, “Three True Stories: Tales From a Flummoxed Fatherhood,” in the Midtown InterNational Theatre Festival at New York’s Jewel Box Theater (312 West 36th Street, fourth floor).
Intrigued by the role reversal, ComedyBeat spoke with the critic-turned-playwright-turned performer. Read my interview at ComedyBeat