This Week in New York Insider's Guide to Arts & Culture in New York City Since 2001



Mel Brooks

Mel Brooks is back for a return engagement of his one-man show at the Temple Emanu-El Streicker Center

Who: Mel Brooks
What: Film clips and reminiscences by a comedy legend
Where: Temple Emanu-El Streicker Center, One East 65th St. at Fifth Ave., 212-507-9580
When: Wednesday, May 9, $99, 7:00
Why: “Look, I really don’t want to wax philosophic, but I will say that if you’re alive, you got to flap your arms and legs, you got to jump around a lot, you got to make a lot of noise, because life is the very opposite of death. And therefore, as I see it, if you’re quiet, you’re not living. . . . You’ve got to be noisy, or at least your thoughts should be noisy and colorful and lively.” So says the noisy and colorful and lively Brooklyn-born Melvin Kaminsky, better known as comedy legend Mel Brooks. The ninety-one-year-old Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony winner, the genius behind such films as Young Frankenstein, Blazing Saddles, The Producers, and Silent Movie, is returning to the Temple Emanu-El Streicker Center with his one-man show, an evening of anecdotes, film clips, stand-up, and personal stories from his life and career. The $150 reserved seats are sold out, but there are still $99 general admission tickets for this rare chance to see and hear Brooks in person, in a unique venue that directly relates to one of his most-memed quotes: “I may be angry at God or at the world, and I’m sure that a lot of my comedy is based on anger and hostility. It comes from a feeling that as a Jew and as a person, I don’t fit into the mainstream of American society. Feeling different, feeling alienated, feeling persecuted, feeling that the only way you can deal with the world is to laugh — because if you don’t laugh, you’re going to cry and never stop crying — that’s probably what’s responsible for the Jews’ having developed such a great sense of humor. The people who had the greatest reason to weep learned more than anyone else how to laugh.”

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