Hello reader! Happy holidays! This week I got talk with one of the busiest local comics on the scene: Lucy Bonino. She is a standout at all the shows she plays, effortlessly weaving jokes that explain her place in this world as a gay Hispanic comedian. She’s quick, punchy, and always a professional. I’ve seen Lucy at a handful of shows this past year, but recently she has been hosting for such heavy hitters as Jeremiah Watkins and Stavros Halkias at spots like the Funny Bone and Sandman Comedy Club.
She has a special holiday variety show you don’t want to miss, Lucy and Lunch’s Holiday House Party & Variety Show, coming up at The Camel on Monday, December 12, featuring music from Lunch $pecial and the Cafeteria, Young Wabo, Disphonia, and Chandler, as well as comics Charlie Ross, Hannah Land, and of course, Lucy Bonino. We talked this week about this upcoming show, her family, and of course her start into comedy.
Gabe: Hey Lucy! How are you?
Lucy: You know, I just left the gym and I’m now I’m getting ready. I’m gonna pick up a pizza and go to my girlfriend’s house.
Gabe: That sounds fun. Hell yeah. Well, let’s get into it. Are you originally from Richmond?
Lucy: I’m not, I’m originally from NoVA.
Gabe: How long have you been in Richmond?
Lucy: I’ve been in Richmond since 2014. Since I finished college. I came to Richmond because I had a couple of friends living here and I got offered a job here and now this is home.
Gabe: When did the comedy start?
Lucy: Comedy started in… 2018? I started at The Coalition Theater doing improv. Then I got into sketch, and then I got into standup, and now standup, I think, is what I want to be doing. I don’t wanna be messing around with improv/sketch so much anymore.
Gabe: Yeah, you gotta pick a lane sometimes. They’re two different muscles.
Lucy: Yeah. Not knocking it or anything like that. I just don’t think I’m as good at it. It doesn’t come as naturally to me, I think, as standup. Standup, I think it’s more fun and more rewarding for me personally.
Gabe: You certainly seem comfortable doing standup. You’ve recently hosted for Jeremiah Watkins, as well as Stavros Halkias. I was at that Stavvy show. What was that experience like?
Lucy: That was awesome. Yeah, he’s great. The openers were also really great. And yeah, I mean, it was six sold-out shows. It was awesome. People keep coming up to me… literally, I was at Potbelly’s and this family of four with younger kids, they were like, “We saw you open for Stavros,” and I was like, “Damn, that’s all right.”
Gabe: [laughs] There were a lot of people there. We were packed in there like sardines.
Lucy: It has never happened to me before. Yeah, so I was like, “Oh that’s cool.”
Gabe: When you were growing up, what made you laugh that you enjoyed? It could be anything. A comedian, a show, a relative…
Lucy: I mean, I have a pretty funny family. Well, like, my family is all really loud. You know that like caricature of the loud Hispanic family? That’s literally what my family is like.
Gabe: Tell me about it.
Lucy: Yeah, and it can suck, because it’s like, you don’t want to be the stereotype, but that’s literally what it is. My family, it’s always been like: everyone’s really loud and everyone is really funny, and whoever can get the joke in goes for it. I’m not even close to the funniest member of my family. It’s just whoever can get the funniest joke the quickest. So, it’s always like you’re trying to make other people laugh. I feel like everyone, or most people in my family, are trying to make other people laugh, or be annoying.
Gabe: Since you’ve started comedy, has anyone in your family thrown you bits they think would be great?
Lucy: It’s always the dumbest stuff. I mean, it’s cute because they want to help and stuff, but like, my cousin will walk kind of funny to the kitchen or something, and then she’ll be like, “Lucy, you can use this in your standup if you want.” And it’s like, “What part of that am I supposed to use my standup?”
Gabe: [laughs] That’s so funny. So, what’s going December 12 at The Camel? Tell me all about it.
Lucy: Yes. December 12. It’s a variety show. Because sometimes it’s hard — I personally find it hard — to watch some showcases where it’s just like, nine comics, and you’re sitting there for an hour and 40 minutes of just back-to-back comedy. I love variety shows, and I just don’t see that much of that in Richmond. Especially with music and comedy. So, this is me and my collaborator/co-host, Lunch $pecial. It’s literally Lucy and Lunch’s Variety Show. He does the music and I do the comedy, and then we kinda do a back-to-back. So, a little comedy, and then a little music, and then a little comedy, and then a little music. And this time it’s at The Camel.
Don’t forget your ugly sweaters. Tis the season. You can catch Lucy Bonino at The Camel with Lunch $pecial and the Cafeteria and Chandler headlining, and featuring Young Wabo and Disphonia, as well as comics Charlie Ross and Hannah Land. It’s the holiday house party you don’t want to miss. Comedy and music collide at The Camel December 12 with doors opening at 7pm and the show starting at 8pm. Tickets are $8 in advance and $10 at the door. Tickets are available at The Camel’s website. Be aware: the Lowe’s parking lot will tow you; you should not park there if you are attending The Camel. Happy Holidays, folks!