One on One with Guy Torry: More than a Replacement

MSQ & Joe Torry

Although Pittsburgh patrons were expecting the King of Comedy, Cedric the Entertainer, the Steel City warmly welcomed Guy Torry instead this September. Cedric the Entertainer abruptly cancelled his Improv visit due to a previous filming commitment. Pittsburgh Improv comedy club management was not specific about his cancellation but as the newest host of ABC’s Who Wants to Be a Millionaire, I’m pretty sure the comedian is pretty busy.

For $20 cheaper, the audience got the Guy Torry Experience where he put on an equally hilarious set by interacting and ripping on the audience and giving his usual sex tips to the men. His fasting talking antics and hand- on approach celebrated his rant on topics like his elderly parents’ sex life, a woman’s overnight bag, and the hypocrisy of judgmental religious people. Torry’s stand up was definitely mildly vulgar and controversial, but uproarious.
His juvenile days as a class clown were easily redeemed when he followed his older brother’s footsteps in the world of comedy. After Torry seeing his older brother, Joe (Sprung, Poetic Justice), on Def Comedy Jam it was clear where his talents were best suited. “I always liked cheering people up and getting attention,” said Torry. With a path already paved from his brother’s work, Torry went on the road and help institute the infamous Phat Tuesdays, a weekly comedy series where big stars got their first break, at Los Angeles’ the Comedy Store. He’s currently working a documentary about Phat Tuesdays and the impact the decade comedy run had on young, inspiring comedians.

Torry just finished filming a movie in his hometown, St. Louis, Missouri with writer, director and producer Chrys Yvette called ‘Happy Hour.” In a most recent adventure, Torry teamed up with actress and producer Kim Coles to save another Los Angeles comedy club, the Comedy Union. After facing possible closure, the club is still open and features comedians from all over the country.
Serving Two Masters

On tour 40 weeks a year, Torry recognizes that the constant traveling will put a strain on any entertainer’s personal relationships. “Something is going to suffer, you can’t serve two masters,” said Torry referring to the difficulty of being on the road and maintaining a family home. After 6 years of marriage, he divorced his wife, Monica, and claimed that it was hard to balance both. With a grin bigger than a kid on Christmas, he assured me that he was single with no worries, no ties, and “no pets.”

Torry’s Favorite Movie
In Movie Scene Queen tradition, I asked Torry for his favorite movie and after minutes of pondering he said “It’s A Wonderful Life” (1946) starring James Stewart and Donna Reed. Torry cites “the feel good story” as the movies deepest attribute. He adds, “it wasn’t about who was the big name actor or big director. It was about the story, a feel good story.” A close second runner up was 1943 Academy Awards Best Picture, Casablanca.

Love for the Burgh
This is the first time Joe Torry has visited Pittsburgh twice in one year. He enjoys the Three Rivers because of the “mixed audience” and love for sports. “As a comedian, you want to see if your jokes work with everyone,” said Torry about the diversity of Pittsburgh crowds. He continues, “Pittsburgh is a good town, a city that loves sports and I appreciate other sports town.” Of course the conversation ended quickly because Torry started ranting some mess about the St. Louis Cardinals and I couldn’t really understand him because I only speak Pirates. (LOL)

We’ll be on the lookout for “Happy Hour” and the Phat Tuesdays documentary.

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