Alonzo Bodden
Alonzo Bodden (Photo by Todd Rosenberg)

You know Alonzo Bodden.

In 2005, he was Season 3 winner on “Last Comic Standing.” He’s been on Animal Planet’s “Animal Nation” with Anthony Anderson. He has been motorcycling on Jay Leno’s Garage. His comedy special was on Showtime. He was on a roundtable discussion about White privilege on Dr. Phil. He’s heard regularly on the news quiz show “Wait, Wait … Don’t Tell Me!” airing on National Public Radio (NPR).

In other words, you’ve seen or heard Bodden just about everywhere.

Showing up in a lot of places is the secret to Bodden’s wide appeal. Audiences will see Bodden sticking to his stand-up roots when he performs at the Arlington Cinema ‘N’ Drafthouse on Nov. 23-24.

I caught up with Bodden as he juggled several projects before coming to the D.C. area for the Thanksgiving weekend.

“Anywhere I can get a job, I take it,” Bodden said about his approach to success. “Stand-up is my principle thing. It’s my biggest passion.”

Bodden has been able to weave his comedic skills with his ability to give quick social commentary. His podcast “Who’s Paying Attention,” is a platform for his stream-of-consciousness style of opinion delivery on current issues. His recent appearance on “Dr. Phil,” where there was an intense discussion about White privilege, allowed Bodden to provide levity to the discussion while “keeping it real.”

“People will know they need someone funny to help out with a heavy topic,” he said. “That’s why that worked out well and I commend Dr. Phil with what he did with the topic.”

“Wait, Wait …” the live NPR news and entertainment quiz show has expanded Bodden’s fan base, keeps him and fellow panelists on their toes. They do not know the topics in advance on which they comment, and there’s the added dynamic of call-in contestants.

Bodden said he comes to the “Wait, Wait…” panel well-prepared because he’s exposed to issues and different news feeds from his travels.

“I’ve always been a bit of a news junkie,” Bodden said about his success on the NPR show. “I know it is a gift and I don’t know how it’s a gift. I hear something, and I spit something back that’s funny. Otherwise, I’d have to get a day job.”

With D.C. being a heavily political news environment, Bodden should have lots of issues to cover. He knows it can’t be avoided and he’s not trying to avoid it, but feels that D.C. audiences are smart and will “get” the points he touches on.

When not on the road, Bodden sharpens this comedy routine for an upcoming broadcast special and he is promoting his fifth comedy CD titled “Man Overboard.” He’s having a great run of success and his respected by other comics.

“The Daily Show’s” Trevor Noah has described Bodden as “one of the funniest people you’ll ever see on stage.” D.C. audiences will find out for themselves when Bodden performs at the Arlington Draft House.

For ticket information, go to http://acdh.arlingtondrafthouse.com or call 703-486-2345. Learn more about Alonzo Bodden at alonzobodden.com.

Brenda Siler is an award-winning journalist and public relations strategist. Her communications career began in college as an advertising copywriter, a news reporter, public affairs producer/host and a...

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