Fun fact to know and tell: in Russia, they pry your eyes open right before they remove a kidney.
I learned this and so much more listening to Ben Rosenfeld’s “The Russian Optimist”, his hilarious second comedy CD that is scheduled for release on January 1, 2016. Guess what else? Like my own maternal grandfather, as well as all other good Russian men, Ben was originally named Boris, which actually means “Samurai”. Who knew?
Your friends and family, whether they’re messed up or not, will love the joyful cynicism embedded in this punchline-dense romp. Smart and dark; “nerdy ‘n dirty” – characterize Ben Rosenfeld’s comedic style however you like. His unique perspective as a Russian/Jewish immigrant to America (“U.S.A.! U.S.A.!”) never fails to deliver a pungent point wrapped in a package of prescient, international snark.
Ben comments on a wide range of topics, including public schools, sports, politics, relationships, childhood, immigration, and Russian/American cultural differences. He’s never afraid to go to the dark and cold places; it must be the St. Petersburg blood. That courage served Ben Rosenfeld well, having spent the latter part of his childhood in the frozen, isolated tundra that is Fairfield County, Connecticut.
Practically destined to become a comic, Ben knows from hostile environments: Russia was so anti-semitic, his grandparents moved away to Germany.
According to Ben Rosenfeld, Russians don’t trust him because he’s Jewish. The Americans don’t trust him because he’s Russian. And Jews don’t trust him because he’s Jewish.
When he first came to America, Ben wanted to fit in, so he became overweight. Eventually, he lost the “baby, welcome to U.S.A.” weight. Ben’s paid his dues in both Russia and this country, priming us to laugh hard at, “This isn’t an Anne Frank joke; it’s an Anne Frank Museum joke.” It might not make complete sense on paper, but this bit crushed with the smart and appreciative audience at the famous New York Comedy Club, where “The Russian Optimist” was recorded this past September.
The cultural contrasts and comedic incongruities of Russian-American life never fail to provide deeply satisfying content on “The Russian Optimist”. It’s conceptually as well as verbally clever, so you glean a new laugh each time you listen to the CD. Hearing Ben Rosenfeld recount the demented bedtime stories told to him by his dad, one can easily see how those imaginings could grow into another one of Ben’s creations, his hilarious book “Russian Optimism: Dark Nursery Rhymes To Cheer You Right Up” (Read my review here!).
Get your copy of “The Russian Optimist” CD plus Ben Rosenfeld’s book “Russian Optimism: Dark Nursery Rhymes To Cheer You Right Up”!!
***Direct Links To Pre-Purchase:***
DO IT TODAY! I guarantee, you’ll regret it far less than giving up a kidney to a Muscovite. U.S.A.! U.S.A.! U.S.A.!
Comedian Ben Rosenfeld Releases Second Comedy Album New Year’s Day!