FriendsLikeUs
David Alan Grier, George Wallace, and Gina Yashere visit Friends Like Us
May 26, 2020 · 1 hr 49 min
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George Wallace By the age of six, George Wallace knew he wanted to be a comedian. He always enjoyed making people laugh, but he also knew the importance of an education. He attended the University of Akron, Ohio and upon graduating with degrees in Transportation, Marketing/Advertising, plus advance studies in Radio and Television from Columbia School of Broadcasting. Literally, a rags-to-riches story, Wallace went from selling rags to VP of Advertising. Still, his dream of being a comedian had a strong hold on him. Within a week of leaving the advertising field, he began to perform stand-up comedy and was offered a job writing for “The Redd Foxx Show.”

Wallace is currently pursuing dual coursework at University of Phoenix and DeVry.

With his writing and stand-up experience, Wallace began landing television appearances. Wallace was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award at the 2013 Soul Train/Centric Comedy All-Star Awards; and won Best Stand Up Comedian at the prestigious American Comedy Awards after four consecutive nominations.

As a veteran radio personality, he has also made appearances on “The Steve Harvey Morning Show” and is a charter member of “The Tom Joyner Morning Show.” In 2004 Wallace appeared as the headlining star of his own show at The Flamingo Hotel in Las Vegas for a 30 day run. Sin City showed its admiration by extending Wallace’s contract indefinitely and nicknaming him “The New Mr. Vegas.” Unlike any other comedy show in Las Vegas, Wallace gave away a number of prizes every night including CDs, DVDs, diamond necklaces, dinner at prestigious restaurants, gourmet chocolates, tropical cruises and even a new car. He celebrated his 10th Anniversary headlining at the Flamingo in March 2014, announced he was closing the show to head back out on the road.  Wallace regularly performs in comedy clubs across the country and is an ambassador for the United States government, performing at military bases all over the world. His first book, LAFF IT OFF (Chaite Press) was published in 2014. A tome of life wisdom, humor and insight from a lifetime of observation, the book is in its third printing. 

Wallace’s most recognized material is his “I Be Thinkin’” lines and jokes about everything from conversational thoughts to political aspirations. Each show he engages members of the audience in comical banter. If provoked, he might even throw out a few of his signature “Yo Mama” jokes. He shows his gratitude to the audience by signing autographs and taking photos after every show. Audience members never know what will happen at the George Wallace show. Wallace is an evolving comedian, which is why his show is different every night. He’s always thinkin’. Fans can now get a taste of what Wallace be thinkin’ on Twitter @MrGeorgeWallace.

David Alan Grier -Countless theater, television, film and comedic endeavors have pushed David Alan Grier's career to remarkable heights and his ability to excel across all mediums and contexts is a testament to his inherent sense of comic timing and creative drive. The three-time Tony and GRAMMY Award nominee was trained in Shakespeare at Yale where he received an MFA from the Yale School of Drama. Grier has enjoyed many accolades and awards throughout his career, not the least of which was his inclusion on Comedy Central's list of the “100 Greatest Stand-Ups of All Time.” 

On the big screen, David Alan Grier was recently seen starring in PEEPLES, produced by Tyler Perry, opposite Kerry Washington and Craig Robinson. Grier made his film debut in STREAMERS (1983), directed by Robert Altman for which he won the Golden Lion for Best Actor at the Venice Film Festival. He also appeared in the Wayans Brothers' spoof movie DANCE FLICK (2009). 

Grier's television work is highlighted by a turn as principal cast member on the Emmy Award winning In Living Color (1990–1994) where he helped to create some of the show's most memorable characters, DAG (2000–2001) and Life with Bonnie (2003) which earned an Image and Golden Satellite nomination. David created, wrote and executive produced a show for Comedy Central called Chocolate News (2008). Last fall, David starred in THE WATSONS GO TO BIRMINGHAM, a Hallmark Channel adaptation of Paul Curtis' 1996 Newbery Award-winning novel by the same name. Grier recently wrapped shooting a starring role as ‘Principal Carl Gaines' in a new series for CBS, Bad Teacher

Grier began his professional career on Broadway as Jackie Robinson in The First, for which he earned a Tony Award nomination for Best Featured Actor in a Musical and won the Theatre World Award (1981). He then joined the cast of Dreamgirls before going on to star opposite Denzel Washington in A Soldier's Play, for which both actors reprised their roles in the film adaptation, A SOLDIER'S STORY (1984). In 2009/2010 Grier starred in David Mamet's acclaimed play RACE opposite James Spader and Kerry Washington at the Ethel Barrymore Theatre on Broadway for which he received his second Tony Award nomination. Grier received the third Tony Award nomination of his career in 2012 for his performance in the "stand-out role of the rakish, drug-dealing Sporting Life" (NY Times) in The Gershwin's Porgy & Bess. Grier received his first GRAMMY nomination when the cast recording of The Gershwin's Porgy & Bess received a 2013 GRAMMY Award nomination for Best Musical Theater Album.  Since then, his most notable screen credits include "Baadasssss!," "The Woodsman," "Crank Yankers," "The Muppets' Wizard of Oz," "Bewitched," "Dance Flick," "Astro Boy," "Bones," "Peeples," "The Watsons Go to Birmingham," "Bad Teacher," "Comedy Bang! Bang!," "The Carmichael Show," "A Series of Unfortunate Events," and "Queen Sugar," among many others. Grier has also delved into the world of live televised musicals, starring as the Cowardly Lion in NBC's "The Wiz Live!" in 2015 and appearing as Santa Claus in Fox's "A Christmas Story Live!" in 2017.

He returned to Broadway for Roundabout Theatre Company, once again revisiting the Pulitzer Prize-winning A Soldier's Play, to star as Sergeant Vernon C. Waters in its Broadway premiere at the American Airlines Theatre from December 27, 2019 through March 15, 2020. He also stars in the film Coffee & Kareem which is now available on Netflix.

Gina Yashere -Gina was born & raised in London UK, of Nigerian parents, and previously worked as an elevator engineer for Otis. Gina has been a stand up and TV star in the UK for numerous years now, with appearances on iconic TV shows such as Live At The Apollo & Mock The Week, as well as creating & performing the hugely popular comedic characters, Tanya & Mrs. Omokerede on The Lenny Henry Show. She broke onto the American comedy scene with her appearances on Last Comic Standing (NBC), where she made it to the final 10, and then never went home! Gina went on to be named one of the top 10 rising talents in the Hollywood Reporter. She is also known in the US for being the only British comedian to ever appear on the iconic Def Comedy Jam, as well as for her hilarious appearances on The Tonight Show (NBC) & Crashing on HBO. Gina self produced 3 separate 1 hour Stand Up Specials, Skinny B*tch, Laughing To America, & Ticking Boxes, two of which are currently streaming on Netflix. Gina's 4th stand up special is also streaming on Netflix, as part of The Stand Ups, season 2, and is  garnering rave reviews on the network. She is also regularly featured on Comedy Central as the British Correspondent on The Daily Show with Trevor Noah. Gina is also an in demand voice artist. She has voiced characters in various animations, including Keisha in the British cult hit, Bromwell High, & Gravelle in the latest movie from the makers of Wallace & Gromit & Chicken Run, Early Man! She can be currently heard playing a starfish called Gareth, on the Children's ITV show, The Rubbish World of Dave Spud. (UK) Gina has performed for audiences not just in Europe, the US & Australia, but she is in fact, a highly sought after comedian in Asia, making numerous sold out appearances in Singapore, Cambodia, Vietnam, Malaysia & Hong Kong. It’s a wonder she found the time to pick up her 4th award in a row for “Best Comedian” at the recent Black Entertainment & Comedy Awards (UK). Gina has performed numerous times at the prestigious Just For Laughs Comedy Festival in Montreal and Toronto. Feature films appearances have included Kiss Kiss Bang Bang and Mr. in Between, and she has also appeared on the West-End stage in The Vagina Monologues.

Gina currently resides in Los Angeles where she is producing, writing and acting on the new sitcom Bob hearts Abishola, which she co-created with Chuck Lorre, & is currently airing on CBS.  

Always hosted by Marina Franklin - One Hour Comedy Special: Single Black Female ( Amazon Prime), Trainwreck, Louie Season V, The Jim Gaffigan Show, Conan O'Brien, Stephen Colbert, HBO's Crashing, and The Breaks with Michelle Wolf

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