An Interview with comedian Emma Willmann

Benjamin Lederer

Benjamin Lederer

Concert Reviewer and Events Volunteer at Portland Radio Project
Benjamin Lederer

(Photo: New York Comedy Club)

The famed comedian Louis C.K. performed at Portland’s Rose Quarter Thursday, Jan. 19 -21. Louis C.K. hails from New York City, and he often recruits the Big Apple’s newest comedic talent to open for his shows.

Portland Radio Project had the pleasure of speaking with Louis’ opening comedian Emma Willmann before the show on Saturday.

Willmann told us she lives in New York and performs daily stand-up routines while auditioning for on-screen roles and co-hosting radio shows. She often appears on SiriusXM’s Wake Up With Taylor. For more information on that show, click here!

Willmann had just wrapped up a tour of shows primarily on college campuses. We asked if she’d had any issue regarding political correctness (or lack there of) in her routines at the universities. But, she said that even though she tends to cater each routine to the audience, it wasn’t much different at all.

While some comedians play mostly on vulgarity or sensitive subjects, Willmann prefers to err on the side of caution. Her aim, after all, is to make folks laugh.

One of Willmann’s most interesting achievements was playing a murderer in the TV series Deadly Affairs. In a previous stand-up routine, she explained  how after her debut, she’d heard a fellow customer in a coffee shop whisper, “She’s famous.”

When Willmann thanked the woman for acknowledging her achievement, she realized the customer had only asked for a cheese Danish…classic mix-up!

Willmann said when she got the call from Louis C.K., she jumped at the opportunity. She dropped everything in order to join the tour that stopped in Denver and then here in Portland.

Emma Willmann_LateShow

Emma Willmann on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

On Saturday night, Emma Willmann opened for the crowd of nearly 6,000, a large show by anyone’s standards. Emma’s routine was packed with stories, some about her own upbringing in small-town Maine. She joked about having a chubby streak early on. (Didn’t we all though?)

Emma was very open on stage, and her funniest bits may well have been about her mother’s reaction to her coming out.

If you’d like a glimpse at Emma’s recent work, check out her recent appearance on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. For comedy buffs and newbies alike, we recommend checking out Emma Willmann’s witty and gut-busting routine.

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