On Thursday night, Ali Siddiq performed his first show of five at Madison’s Comedy Club on State.
The show began with two local comedians who came on stage and got the ball rolling. The first was the host of the night — she was straightforward about her life and brought some dark humor to loosen up the crowd and test their moral limits.
She had a solid, fast-paced set that lasted about five minutes. She covered a lot of subjects in that time, from how to cope with her four sons to what guys think about in their teenage years.
The second comedian came up and delivered a much more contained, adult act from the get-go, but it eventually turned into a typical comedy set centered around complaining. He gave a solid five to seven minutes and included jokes about his wife and his distaste for millennials.
Afterward, Mickey Housley — the feature comedian of the night — came on stage. He began his set by addressing the significant racial disparity that was apparent in the room. It foreshadowed what he was going to be talking about: serious issues with a comedic twist on them.
His best joke of the night involved Colin Kaepernick, which received some moaning laughs. For the most part, he talked about him and his wife, as the two married over three years ago. Housley delivered a solid 20-minute set with direction in his act, and it set the audience up for what to expect from the show’s headliner.
When Ali Siddiq walked onstage, he was given a chair by the host. He properly configured the stage to his liking in complete silence, which already made the audience start to laugh. He sat down and began talking about how he is a different comedian. He prefaced that not everyone at the show might like his material, but to deal with it anyway since they paid the money to see him.
After drawing some initial laughs, he talked about immigration, YouTube, growing older and dealing with his kids. He also integrated audience members into his jokes and poked fun at them, which drew a lot of laughs from the crowd.
His best joke of the night was on a bad drug experience after filming a show for Comedy Central. The 15- to 20-minute story was filled with humorous peaks and valleys: When it reached its climax, the crowd erupted in laughter.
Siddiq also discussed some injuries he suffered and things he didn’t understand or like. He finished his set by grading audience members on whether they were happy to be there or whether they were stone-faced throughout the night and weren't receptive to many jokes. This closing mechanism was well-received by the audience, and it ended the show on a great note.
To learn more about Ali Siddiq and how he entered the world of stand-up, check out our interview with him here.