The Last Show: Matt Braunger live at the Comedy Showcase in Ann Arbor

Photo Credit: Mindy Tucker

Editor’s Note: Welcome to The Last Show, a new Vanyaland series where we talk to performers about their last traditional live appearance before the pandemic hit. As we slowly make our way out of this mess, and a return to stages appears to be coming (eventually), here are the stories of bands, artists, comedians and others who performed their last live gig in front of an audience around this time last year. These are their shows, their stories, their memories.

Matt Braunger [Los Angeles, California]

Vanyaland: When and where was your last show before the pandemic?

Matt Braunger: The Ann Arbor Comedy Showcase in Ann Arbor, Michigan [on March 15.] One of my all-time faves in the country. Please consider donating to their GoFundMe.

Who else was on the bill?

Alex Price featured. He’s great and was my steady guy throughout the Midwest the last two years or so. Bret Hayden hosted, who is also very funny.

What was notable about the show?

We had really decent sized houses, and a couple sold out!

What do you remember the most about the show?

I remember giving everybody elbow bumps on the way out, because we thought handshakes would give us COVID, but not breathing, or laughing, or talking.

If someone told you live comedy would be going away for at least the next year, what would you have thought?

It would have been unfathomable to me. Now, though? I’d be surprised if it comes back in less than a year. 

If someone told you live comedy would be going away for at least the next year, what would you have done differently?

Knowing what I know now, I probably would have cancelled the shows, even as brutal as it would have been. To be fair, there was literally only one known case in the entire city at the time, so we were fine, But still. Eeesh, we got lucky. 

What do you have coming up or coming out?

My focus is mostly on my podcast these days (This Might Help with Matt Braunger), as all my dates got moved to the fall (fingers crossed), but you can see me on the new season of Black-ish and a thing or two I can’t talk about yet (so why mention it, Braunger? What a dick). The positive thing for me about all this is being able to take care of my six-month-old baby, Rose, full time. If I was on the road all I’d think about is what I was missing. 

Check Out ‘This Might Help with With Matt Braunger’ below, and follow Matt Braunger on Twitter @braunger.