Don Reed wrote, directed and stars in The Kipling Hotel, his latest autobiographical show at The Marsh Berkeley. Photo by Ric Omphroy
I interviewed Don Reed about his new autobiographical solo show The Kipling Hotel, which opens this weekend at The Marsh Berkeley.
This is the second chapter in what will likely be a trilogy of solo shows about the Oakland native’s life. The first was the phenomenally successful East 14th, which ran at The Marsh for 2 1/2 years – no mean feat for a guy who lives in Los Angeles and works as the warmup comedian for “The Tonight Show with Jay Leno.”
One thing that didn’t make the interview was the fact that Reed also has his own media company, Reediculous Media, specializing in voiceover, copywriting, tag lines, marketing and more. His clients include companies like Nickelodeon and Activision. Add to this the fact that Reed is also writing books based on his shows and you have a true Renaissance man.
“It’s like Benjamin Franklin was a sculptor, a writer, a statesman and a scientist,” Reed says. “If you’re not many things, you’re no one when you show up at a party. I love dancing in different areas of media, from theater to books to advertising. For me, it’s all about bringing a comedic spirit to this little ball we roll around on.”
Reed has also been involved in what he calls “a long, slow conversation” with Robert Townsend about the possibility of turning his story into a screenplay. But at 52, Reed is too old to play his younger self.
“But I know who should do it,” he says. “My older son is 15. He looks just like me, and he can cry on cue.”
FOR MORE INFORMATION
Don Reed’s The Kipling Hotel continues through Feb. 12 at The Marsh Berkeley, 2120 Allston Way, Berkeley. Tickets are $20-$35. Call 415-282-3055 or visit www.themarsh.org.