Brad Garrett wanted to give his comedy club a name that would be easily recognized. “I thought I’d call it the Chris Rock Comedy Club,” he says—but he ended up naming it after himself.
The Brad Garrett Comedy Club opens at the Tropicana on June 28.
Garrett’s club comes as a boost to Las Vegas’ laugh factor, which suffered the loss of both the TBS Comedy Festival at Caesars Palace and L.A. Comedy Club in the Miracle Mile Shops at Planet Hollywood last year.
Garrett sees the void as an opportunity.
“It’s not just going be a place that you go when you stay at the Trop,” he says. “It’s going to be a place that you go for comedy in Vegas.”
The actor/comedian has been performing on the Strip for more than 25 years. Until recently, he frequently shared the stage at The Mirage with his former Everybody Loves Raymond co-star, Ray Romano.
However, Garrett won’t be returning to The Mirage any time soon. He’s committed to headlining at least 15 shows a year at the Tropicana, and anticipates being there more than that.
The recently remodeled room was built for comedy. “This was [Rodney] Dangerfield’s room in the ’80s,” Garrett says. “He shot his specials here.”
The walls are adorned with more than 100 pieces of memorabilia that Garrett has collected over the years, and he commissioned Steve Altman to do paintings of four famous comedians—Richard Pryor, Steve Martin, Robin Williams and George Carlin—to set the tone.
Pryor and Carlin are dead, so they won’t be gracing the club’s stage, and Garrett admits it’s unlikely, though not impossible, that Martin or Williams will perform there, either.
“I doubt Steve [Martin] will be here,” he sighs. “I might be able to get, you know, Tony Martin may come by and do a little something for me, or Billy Martin, actually, is looking for work … .”
Garrett headlines the first week of shows with Rob Sherwood. Dom Irrera, who recently performed at Playboy Comedy at the Palms, comes on board once his non-compete clause expires in August, and Saturday Night Live alum Kevin Nealon joins the lineup Dec. 17-18.
Garrett hopes some of his funny friends will pop by for impromptu performances.
“That’s what made the older clubs work,” he says. They’re gonna come by, they’re gonna have a couple cocktails and they’re gonna jump onstage. … The problem is, a lot of the big guys have other hotel contracts that I have to respect—and I do. But, you know, after midnight in this town, anything can happen.”
Shows at 8 p.m. nightly, and 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Tickets from $39, ages 18-plus, two-for-one tickets for locals on Tuesdays.