Headliners Announced for Great American Comedy Festival 2020 | News


Six-time Emmy Award-winning actor David Koechner and Wayne Brady will headline this year’s Great American Comedy Festival in Norfolk.

Koechner, well known for his roles in “The Office” and the “Anchorman” films, will take the stage on Friday, June 19 for the comedy show at the Johnny Carson Theater. The following night, Brady – the host of CBS’s “Let’s Make A Deal” and a regular on “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” improvisation show – will perform at the comedy festival gala.

The family comedy magic show will kick off the festival on Thursday, June 18. All shows at the Johnny Carson Theater are at 7 p.m. There is also an adults-only late night show at Divots on Friday June 19 at 10:30 p.m.

The 13th Great American Comedy Festival is presented by Nucor Steel Nebraska, Nucor Cold Finish Nebraska, Nucor Detailing Center and Vulcraft Nebraska.

Koechner plays Beau in the ABC hit comedy, “Bless This Mess,” which is set in Nebraska. He also played Todd Packer in “The Office” and Champ Kind in “Anchorman” and “Anchorman 2: The Legend Continues”. He recently starred in Legendary’s “Krampus” and Roadside Attraction’s “Priceless”.

Other TV credits include Showtime’s “Twin Peaks”, Comedy Central’s “Another Period”, ABC’s “The Goldbergs” and IFC’s “Stan vs. Evil”. He also voices recurring characters in Fox’s “American Dad” and Netflix’s “F is for Family” and “All Hail King Julien”.

A graduate of Chicago’s Second City Theater, Koechner got his first chance as a cast member on “Saturday Night Live” and has since appeared in more than 170 movies and TV shows. Notable movie credits include “Waiting”, “Out Cold”, “Talladega Nights”, “Get Smart” and “Cheap Thrills”.

When not filming, Koechner performs live comedy across the country and creates original content videos for his YouTube channel, “Full On Koechner”. He also co-hosts Big Slick Celebrity Weekend, an annual charity event benefiting the Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City.

Brady, also a Grammy-nominated singer and songwriter, has been a regular on the improvised TV series “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” – both the original ABC and the current CW version.

Brady recently appeared as a series regular in the Emmy Award-winning CBS daytime drama, “The Bold and the Beautiful.” He was nominated for a Daytime Emmy for his work in the series. He returned to his theatrical roots with a successful Broadway debut as Bill Flynn in “Chicago, and he received rave reviews with Lola in the Tony Award-winning production of “Kinky Boots”.

His Broadway journey continued with a three-month tour with Aaron Burr in the Pulitzer Prize and the Tony Award-winning production of “Hamilton” in Chicago.

Brady’s debut studio album, “A Long Time Coming,” earned him a Grammy nomination. He has also lent his vocal talents to both the Disney animated series “Sofia the First” and Nickelodeon’s “Loud House”.

Her television credits include “Colony”, “30 Rock”, “Everybody Loves Chris”, “Dirt”, “How I Met Your Mother” and “Don’t Forget the Lyrics”, among others.

“Once again, we are extremely pleased with our headliners for the Friday and Saturday shows of the Great American Comedy Festival,” said Lisa Wattier, Executive Director. “These multitalented performers will continue our tradition of recruiting top performers to lead five other comedians in presenting exceptional comedy shows rarely, if ever, found in communities the size of Norfolk.”

The annual festival opened in 2008 to honor the legacy of Norfolk’s favorite son Johnny Carson, who hosted NBC’s “The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson” for over 25 years.

The Great American Comedy Festival is also made possible through support from the Nebraska Arts Council, the Nebraska Cultural Endowment, and the Norfolk Area Visitors Bureau.

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