Comedian Kathleen Madigan Doesn’t Define Herself as a Woman Comic

The natural-born storyteller visits Detroit in October
Kathleen Madigan
Kathleen Madigan photograph courtesy of Luzena Adams

The sharp-tongued St. Louis native stumbled into her 30-year comedy career while looking to tell a few jokes on open-mic nights. Now, Kathleen Madigan best known for her playfully irreverent anecdotes about her Midwestern upbringing and aging Irish Catholic parents. There’s another Midwestern city Madigan seems to also enjoy: Detroit. She’s performing five shows here — the most of all the cities shes hitting on her Hot Dogs and Angels tour, which follows her 2018 album, Bothering Jesus. Originally released as a Netflix special in 2016, it also happens to be the best-selling comedy album of the past five years.

A natural-born storyteller, Madigan takes each audience member on hilarious journeys, like a shopping trip on the streets of Paris with her mother that ended with an interrogation by the “Chinese mafia.” She’s aired her comedy chops on late-night shows (she’s racked up 25 appearances on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno), as well as The View and Jerry Seinfeld’s series, Comedians in Cars Getting Coffee.

Among many accolades, Madigan has won the American Comedy and Phyllis Diller Awards for Best Female Comedian. Yet, she says it doesn’t matter what gender you are if you’re funny — she never defines herself as a woman comic. “I do comedy like a person plays golf,” she says. “You’re playing your own game and what others  are doing doesn’t matter. In stand-up, if you go into a club and tell jokes and people laugh, you’re going to get paid.” Oct. 11. $30+. Mark Ridley’s Comedy Castle, 310 S. Troy St., Royal Oak; 248-542-9900;