In 2006, actress and comedienne Wanda Sykes packed the Tabernacle, drawing more than 2,000 people.
So how did Uptown Comedy Corner, which fits 350 people, nab such a big star for such a modest venue?
Family connections. Her cousin Angelo Sykes happens to be a co-owner.
Fellow co-owner Gary Abdo said they ran into her two years ago in Las Vegas at a comedy festival and asked her to come to Atlanta then. But it’s taken her two years to find an opening in her schedule.
“She’s a very hard-working woman, God bless her,” Abdo said. “Her schedule is jampacked.”
Abdo said he loves her brand of “sharp, biting, sarcastic wit. I’m going to watch all four shows.” (Rush Limbaugh fans thought she was bit too biting during the White House Correspondents’ Dinner this spring.)
Sykes, in a brief interview earlier this week, said she’ll use the time in the club to prepare for an HBO special she’s going to tape next month and set to air this fall.
When asked how her cousin roped her into doing the gig, she cracked, “Oh Lord! I should get a DNA test to make sure we’re related!”
Sykes not only starts back on season four of CBS sitcom “The New Adventures of Old Christine” next month but is planning a new weekly Saturday night talk show on Fox TV starting November 7. It will replace “Mad TV” at 11 p.m.
“We are in the early stages of the concept of the show,” Sykes said. “So far, we have me. We know I’m going to be on the show.”
If anything, she said she’ll have an outlet to talk about current events.
IF YOU GO
Uptown Comedy Corner
800 Marietta St., NW Atlanta
July 30, 31, 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. each day