Day: October 2, 2010

“Farewell, Maestro,” by Ted Alexandro

Maestro is a title of extreme respect given to a master musician. Greg Giraldo was a maestro, a master of his craft. One of the things I treasure most about coming up through the New York City comedy scene is the opportunity to learn by watching the very best in NY's clubs, an unconventional university scattered over the expanse of New York's five boroughs. Classes are rarely scheduled, they often just pop up and if you're lucky, you're in the right place at the right time. Professors Attell, Rock, Chappelle, CK, Barry, Giraldo – maestros, one and all – hold court and we, the students, sit and learn. And from the very start, Professor Giraldo was one of my very favorites. An exciting thing happens when one of these maestros takes the stage. The mundane rhythms of a comedy club are transformed. Comedians line the back of the room with childlike excitement in anticipation of something special. Even the waitstaff momentarily stops and becomes part of the audience. The fractured energies and scattered focus of the many are harnessed and fused into one energy- something inexplicably beautiful- in the hands of the maestros. When Greg Giraldo walked into a club, class was in session. I remember countless nights when I was filled with giddy excitement at the sight of Greg's arrival at a club. I'd take my place in...

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