Darrell Hammond Speaks

mohegan sun hosts ‘an evening with darrell hammond’


Darrell Hammond, the comedian, actor and author, best known for his work on Saturday Night Live (SNL) is bringing his stand-up comedy and impressions to the Keystone Grand Ballroom in the Convention Center at Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs for a night of laughs Saturday, Feb. 8 at 8 p.m.
Hammond is best known for his impressions of Bill Clinton and Sean Connery, as well as scores of other politicians, actors, media personalities and news-makers during his time on SNL. His run as a regular cast member from 1995 through 2009 earned him the distinction of holding the longest consecutive tenure of any cast member in the show’s 38-year history. In 2011, he released his critically acclaimed memoir; God If You’re Not Up There, I’m F***ed: Misadventures with Fake Noses, Funny Accents, Addiction and Saturday Night Live.
As a stand-up comic, Hammond appeared in his own televised comedy special on Comedy Central, as well as stints on CBS’ Late Show with David Letterman, NBC’s The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and Late Night with Conan O’Brien. He has also been a frequent guest on The Howard Stern Show.
Hammond’s television and motion picture credits include roles in the FX drama Damages, Scary Movie 3 and 6 and Law & Order: SVU.

After your many years on Saturday Night Live, movies and writing a book, you’re back on stage doing stand-up.
I’m not really doing stand-up anymore. I have a lecture series based on my book, but the stand-up is because I’m friends with Scott Bruce who’s putting this thing together. I do some corporate events. Basically, what I discovered in stand-up is that everyone wanted me to do the SNL stuff. I still do it sometimes — it’s good money, it’s fun and the people are real nice. Scott knows what he’s doing and Mohegan Sun is great at what they do and they’re generous with their checkbooks. I don’t turn down good jobs. I never did.

What initially attracted you to comedy?
I don’t know. It’s sort of instinctive. I saw Truman Capote being funny on stage at the University of Florida. I knew watching him, I said “That’s what I want to do.” More than anything, I wanted to be a baseball player, but by 19 I knew that was not a possibility. I want people to laugh at things I say and I want to get paid.

What makes you laugh?
I’m the same as everybody else. A couple years ago, I saw Shakespeare In the Park (A Midsummer’s Night Dream) I didn’t realize how funny he was. All kinds of comedy done well make me laugh.

What are some things you would still like to accomplish in your career?
I’ve been going to meetings for a couple of years about this book. People want to convert it into other media and I would like to talk about that in media and do the things they’re talking about doing. They’re from Hollywood and from New York and they’re not talking about a book, (wink). I can only give you some hints but that should give you an idea of what it is.

You said on Letterman that your life was dominated by Bill Clinton for years. Did you ever feel uncomfortable with playing that role?
No. The guy is endlessly fascinating. I saw him on TV again recently at a basketball game. I realized all over again that he is more interesting than he’s ever been! People love to see him. He’s so charismatic and interesting. At SNL, we used him in every form of comedy there was; from slapstick, to drawing room to light comedy to romantic comedy. You can’t be more interesting (than Clinton) and have a more versatile, complex and fascinating guy to play.

What should audience members expect to see during your show at Mohegan Sun?
They will see the SNL stuff that they like. I realized 10 years ago that I wasn’t going to do stand-up — I was going to provide a vessel in which to perform Bill Clinton and Sean Connery and it’s a blast. I have a stand-up format in which I insert these impressions.
— tom graham

Tickets for ‘An Evening with Darrell Hammond’ are $30 and are on-sale now through Ticketmaster. Ticketmaster customers may log on to Ticketmaster.com; call Ticketmaster’s national toll-free charge-by-phone number 1.800.745.3000; or visit any Ticketmaster outlet. Tickets are also available at the Mohegan Sun at Pocono Downs Box Office, subject to availability.