Roseanne: Controversial, and proud of it
Roseanne Barr, 8 p.m. May 4, Penn’s Peak, Jim Thorpe. CONTRIBUTED PHOTO
Comedy superstar and “Domestic Goddess” Roseanne Barr brings her comedy tour to Penn’s Peak at 8 p.m. May 4.
Barr continues to astound with her real-life, tell-it-all, comedy by using her personal experiences that impact everybody, every day.
“I like to talk about everyday things that everyday people go through. I always address class issues because I think they are funny for one thing, and also, because I’ve been on both sides of the spectrum from being raised very poor to being very rich. That’s kind of why it is my subject of interest and where all the funny comes from in the world,” says Barr in a phone interview.
Barr began her career as a standup comedian, turning her everyday life into an act. On Oct. 18, 1988, the “Roseanne” TV show aired its first episode. The show spanned more than nine years (1988-97).
The original “Roseanne” aired for 224 episodes, averaging 30 million viewers weekly. Barr received an Emmy Award in 1992 and was nominated for Emmys in 1994 and 1995, all for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Comedy Series, and was nominated for an Emmy in 1998 for “The Roseanne Show” for Outstanding Talk Show Host.
In 2018, the “Roseanne” show returned to ABC, receiving record-breaking ratings. Barr was fired from the TV show, which was canceled after her controversial tweets. The show, renamed “The Conners,” returned without her.
Barr, 67, born Roseanne Cherrie Barr Nov. 3, 1952, in Salt Lake City, Nevada, lives in Hawaii.
Of her show-business career, Barr says, “They are all great accomplishments. But my whole life has really been a great accomplishment. I’ve never bowed down and I never will.
“And I’ve never forgotten where I came from and I never will. All of these things caused a lot of damage to my nervous system and taught me to be brave.
“All of that kind of fits into comedy. I think I was born to say something and I felt that every day of my life. I’ve lived a pretty good and honest life, too, and all of those things took some guts.”
Barr’s family-run production company, Full Moon and High Tide Studio (FMHT), produced her first DVD for children, “Rockin’ with Roseanne: Calling All Kids!“ (2006), which was inspired by her grandchildren.
FMHT has produced original programming for VH1, videos for Barr’s YouTube Channel and her fourth HBO comedy special, “Roseanne Barr: Blonde and Bitchin” (2006).
“I started FMHT studio about 20 years ago and I got really involved in technology and communications. I created an international call-in show on the internet. It was pretty primitive, but I would get calls from all over the world.
“It was exciting and different and I basically started this whole call-in, podcast, interview thing. We talked to people about where they lived and what it was like where they lived. It was like a world-call call-in show.”
Asked to summarize her life in one sentence, Barr says, “I fought mind control and won!”
Referring to the 2018 “Roseanne” TV show reboot and cancellation, she says, “I won now, too, even though they think I’ve lost. But I’ve actually won.
“I am very proud that I can construct and write a joke that can go in three different directions. I have about 280 killer jokes in my act and I love to see how people take it all in.
“I love a live audience and I love how I can bring a very diverse crowd to the same singular place and hear great laughs. To me, I really bring people together.”
Tickets: Penn’s Peak box office, 325 Maury Road, Jim Thorpe; pennspeak.com; ticketmaster.com; 800-745-3000