Comedy

Chatting with Steve Martin and Martin Short—at the same time!

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Martin and Short double the funny at Caesars.

Where are you guys right now?

Martin Short: I’m in Palm Desert.

Steve Martin: I’m in New York City. Marty and I have actually never met.

MS: Which makes this kind of exciting! I have to say, I’m surprised to hear your voice is as manly as it is.

SM: When I first heard your voice, I had a whole different picture of you. I never expected that voice to come from that face.

Your show evolved out of something different where you interviewed each other.

SM: When we started charging for it, we thought we should probably start doing a real show now.

MS: We’re professional that way.

SM: Yes, it’s a full-blown show we’re proud to do anywhere. There is singing and dancing and jokes.

How do you design a show to satisfy your audience while also keeping yourselves happy?

SM: It’s designed by trial and error, saying that worked there, or let’s cut that ... That way, it’s always in process. It keeps us on our toes and active, but we’ll see—talk to us a year from now.

MS: I think Steve and I share some similarities and comedic instincts, and one is our work ethic. When we finish and the audience is saying, “That was great, we love it,” and we’re getting de-mic’d, we’re talking about what didn’t work and what we should change, constantly trying to perfect it. And that’s what’s exciting and fun.

You’re touring this thing. How much will you change the show for Las Vegas?

SM: Well, we’ve played there before and had a great response and a great time, but I used to play Vegas in the ’70s, and then it was one of the worst places to play. I can’t tell you why, but there was booze and people were eating and there may have been restrictions on how long you could go so people would get back into the casino, and now they really do it like a show. A real paid ticket. I find it to be fantastic now, one of the best places we play.

MS: And the Colosseum is just gorgeous.

Martin, will it be weird to do the joke about you two being like Donny and Marie without the sexual tension when Donny and Marie might be playing across the street?

MS: I think that just makes it more powerful.

Three Amigos was your first collaboration. How do you feel about that movie now?

SM: Well, it wasn’t really a collaboration, because Marty just did what we told him to do.

MS: It was more like servitude.

SM: We look back on it really fondly, and it seems to have an afterlife. I never even think about my old movies unless someone reminds me of them, and I’m constantly reminded of Three Amigos, in a nice way. If we have contributed nothing to the culture other than that, we are very proud. And I should say, we have contributed nothing to the culture other than that.

I was Googling to find out how many movies you’ve done together and found a ranked list of Martin Short movies. The top two are Father of the Bride and Three Amigos.

MS: Well there you go, and both with Steve Martin—getting in the way.

Do you think you’ll do more movies together?

SM: Probably not, just because movies are hard to come by.

MS: Movies shift in and out of appropriateness, in a way. I went and saw Get Out, and you know, that’s hilarious and original and great, but you don’t sit back and say, I could have done that role.

SM: Where did you see it Marty?

MS: California.

SM: No, I mean, when will it come to my iPhone?

You have more dates at the Colosseum this year, which pretty much means you are Vegas residents now.

SM: That’s great! I look forward to moving to Las Vegas and getting a home together.

MS: As long as it’s something modern.

Steve Martin & Martin Short April 9, 7:30 p.m., $50-$175. The Colosseum, 866-227-5938.

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Brock Radke

Brock Radke has been writing about Las Vegas for almost two decades. He currently serves as editor-at-large covering entertainment and ...

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