Center Theatre Group - L.A.'s Theatre Company

Humor Abuse


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Date: Nov 2, 2013
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Date: Oct 15 & 29, 2013 at 8:00pm
Oct 27, 2013 at 1:00pm

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Recommended for audiences ages 13+
Children 6 and under who may cry or fidget are never admitted.


CTG Show Guide for Parents

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This Is Gonna Be Big!

Los Angeles Times Critic's Choice

“‘This is a show about clowning, and I’m the straight man,’ says actor Lorenzo Pisoni early on in Humor Abuse, currently sending Mark Taper Forum audiences skyward with the velocity of a helium balloon. He pauses, then adds, ‘Seriously.’

Pisoni is only being honest, albeit self-effacing, and thus begins a rapturous 90 minutes that sail past like cascading juggling pins. By keeping its knee-slapping, gasp-inducing and heart-tugging elements in quietly accelerating balance, this Obie-winning solo piece about growing up with the Pickle Family Circus lands an uproarious, astounding and affecting tour de force.”
–David C. Nichols, Los Angeles Times | Read the full review.

Run away and join the circus
with a clown, his dad and a lifetime of memories.

Life lessons fly fast and funny for Lorenzo Pisoni when he joins the family business – San Francisco’s Pickle Family Circus – at the age of six, earning his clown college stripes (and polka dots) through on-the-job training with his exacting father as his role model, guru and comic foil.

“90 minutes of nonstop hilarity…a tour de force of physical comedy.” – San Francisco Chronicle

In his autobiographical Humor Abuse, Pisoni is a one-man whirlwind: spinning stories like plates and performing side-splitting physical feats with aplomb, mixing heart and humor in a tenderly rendered homage to the consummate performer, parent and perfectionist who taught him everything he needed to fill some very big shoes.

“Mr. Pisoni’s performance is breathtaking,” – Charles Isherwood, The New York Times

Ovation Recommended


Watch & Listen

Learn more about the Humor Abuse documentary Kickstarter campaign.


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  • Created By
    Lorenzo Pisoni and Erica Schmidt
  • Performed by
    Lorenzo Pisoni
  • Directed by
    Erica Schmidt
  • Lighting Design by
    Ben Stanton
  • Sound Design and Original Music by
    Bart Fasbender

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