As a comedian, Kate Murphy has proven something of a force in Portland. For years—and well into the pandemic—she hosted the Mercury's I, Anonymous Show and also co-hosted the beloved, irascible Dark Web Tonight.
But we haven't had the pleasure of Murphy's presence for a while. As the pandemic shifted into gear she moved to Louisville, KY and later to Los Angeles. The big news is Murphy is preparing to move back to Portland—in just a few weeks! And the similarly big news: She's put together a wildly start-studded bill of local talent for her preparatory visit.
Tonight's Kate Murphy and Friends show at the Siren (Wed Aug 3, 7:30 pm) includes sets from not only Murphy, but Portland's likewise missed Arlo Weierhauser. Local stalwarts Shain Brendan, Ben Harkins, Nariko Ott, and the always surreal Phil Schallberger will also perform.
"I think it was a bit of a mistake," Murphy said. "I'm honestly the least funniest person on the lineup." She told the Mercury that putting together a bill like this was easy "when all of your friends are so funny."
Murphy says that most of the sets will stay short—in the neighborhood of 7-10 minutes. We can expect something likely involving audiovisual work from Schallberger, and I can personally vouch that Brendan has a great, longer form joke that killed at a recent Comedy in the Park set. As for the others, it's a great time to check in with your local favorites to hear their new material.
"I wish I could have booked a three-hour show with even more of my funniest friends," Murphy said. That sounds fun, but for for a Wednesday night this show sounds pretty much perfect.