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Greg Fitzsimmons to debut his first one-hour special on August 18

Angie Frissore

It’s been a long time coming, but comedian (and Emmy-winning writer and producer) Greg Fitzsimmons is gearing up for the premiere of his new special, “Greg Fitzsimmons: Life on Stage”, which will air on Comedy Central at midnight on Sunday, August 18.

In his first one-hour stand-up special, Fitzsimmons explains why debt isn’t real, exercise isn’t worth it, and why it’s all downhill from the day you’re born.  Filmed in front of a live audience at the Tarrytown Music Hall, he covers everything from politics to race relations, regaling the audience with tales of his father’s perfect level of discipline and the time he caught something unexpected on the “nannycam.”

Fitzsimmons started off his career in the booming comedy scene of Boston and recently shared some of his fondest Boston memories with me when he was last in town.

“At the time I started [in college], it was me, Joe Rogan and Bill Burr. There were a lot of really good comics that started, and there was a ton of really bad comics that started. It was a time when we were just doing it for the love of the sport,” Fitzsimmons reflected. “Nobody thought about getting on television or anything – it was just to do it. I really miss that feeling – we were very competitive with each other but there was also a lot of camaraderie. The stakes were very high, and we all really cared about it a lot.”

Fitzsimmons’ new special is more than just a notch on his career belt – “Life on Stage” was filmed in the comedian’s hometown, making it a very “special” special.

“I was really happy I got to film it in my hometown, Tarrytown, New York, and it’s in a theater that I used to go to when I was a kid. We used to go see movies in this theater,” Fitzsimmons tells me. “It was built in 1885, and my mom was there, all the bone heads that I grew up with and used to get in trouble with, my cousins, aunt and uncle…some teachers I had as a kid showed up. It was like this homecoming that I also got to do a special at.”

While most comedians still deal with a bout of nerves before performing to any crowd, Fitzsimmons had the added task of knowing he’d be performing to life-long friends and family.

“It really, really lived up to everything I hoped it would be, and I got to do two shows, which you usually do and then edit them together. The first show, I think I was nervous – the crowd was kind of tired and at the end of it, I was really, really upset, like, ‘I can’t believe I blew it,’” Fitzsimmons recalls. “And then the late show came in – they were wilder, and I had this attitude of like, ‘This is it!’ I knew that the entire special was going to rest on the late show, and so I just let go and had fun and it turned out really well.”

Fitzsimmons is a prominent stand-up comedian who is a regular performer on “The Late Show with David Letterman,” “The Tonight Show,” “Late Night with Conan O’Brien,” “Late Late Show with Craig Kilborn,” “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” “Howard Stern Show,” “Chelsea Lately” and CNN and has a popular podcast called “Fitzdog Radio.” He is also an Emmy® Award-winning writer/producer who has previously worked on “The Ellen Degeneres Show,” and written for “The Emmy® Awards.” Fitzsimmons’ book Dear Mrs. Fitzsimmons was recently published by Simon and Schuster. Most recently, he was a staff writer on “Lucky Louie” for HIP at HBO. “Greg Fitzsimmons: Life on Stage” is executive produced by Fitzsimmons and Brian Volk-Weiss and airs at midnight on Sunday, August 18 on Comedy Central.

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