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STEVE CUIFFO IS LENNY BRUCE
LENNY BRUCE AT “CARNEGIE HALL”
50 YEARS TO THE NIGHT
On February 4, 1961, New York was deep in a state of declared emergency: 2 feet of snow on the ground and still falling; winds of 80 mph. The brilliant young comedian Lenny Bruce had a hugely important midnight show scheduled at Carnegie Hall and had been sweating his way north from Miami for two days. Would anyone show up? In sub-zero temperatures, with an official ban on driving? Indeed they would, two thousand strong, arriving by slow-moving bus and subway and their own two feet. What they saw was arguably Lenny’s greatest performance, an adrenaline-fueled be-bop beyond worthy of the dogged efforts his audience had made to be there. Free-associating at light speed, Lenny hit his marks with thrilling accuracy -- philosophizing, rhapsodizing, criticizing, downsizing subjects as forbidding as the flag, being Jewish, the Catholic Church, race, homosexuality and drugs. Steve Cuiffo delivers a sublime, hyper-real, verbatim resurrection of this relevant, to the point of prophetic, monologue by a great American thinker, and an opportunity to reflect on all his insights and warnings.