When the National Comedy Center officially opens its doors next month in Jamestown, NY, it’ll not only include a discussion on comedy and the First Amendment, but also kick off a fundraising partnership with the Lenny Bruce Memorial Foundation with a special Lenny Bruce exhibit.
The exhibit, highlighted by rare artifacts courtesy of his daughter, Kitty Bruce, and the foundation, will include Bruce’s iconic trench coat, which he began wearing as a matter of course owing to his being taken to jail directly from the stage; his typewriter; a hand-annotated manuscript for his book “How to Talk Dirty and Influence People”; a personal letter to his father (from jail); court transcripts; Governor George Pataki’s pardon letter and more. Bruce was convicted in 1964 on obscenity charges and was posthumously pardoned by Governor Pataki in 2003, the first in the history of New York State.
Lewis Black will join Kitty and attorney Paul Cambria for the panel discussion on Aug. 2, 2018, at the center, which formally opens the day before, on Aug. 1.
The Lenny Bruce Memorial Foundation, founded in 2008 by Kitty, combats alcohol/drug addiction with scholarships and education. Bruce died of a drug overdose in August 1966 when he was only 40. Donations to the National Comedy Center Lenny Bruce Memorial Partnership will support both the Lenny Bruce Memorial Foundation in its rehabilitative endeavors and the National Comedy Center in its continued efforts to tell the story of Bruce’s legacy and impact as a pioneer of comedy and freedom of speech.