OUT On Stage

By David-Elijah Nahmod, August 2018 Web Exclusive.

Fathom Events brings OUT On Stage to cinemas July 24 for a one-night-only queer stand-up comedy experience. The film comes to Fathom Events courtesy of Dekkoo, an online streaming service which offers a variety of content geared toward gay male audiences.

The one-of-a-kind, originally produced comedy is hosted by Zach Noe Towers, who was named “One of the 10 comedians to watch in 2018,” by OUT Magazine and is the current host of "The Elite Daily Show" on Verizon’s Go90 Network.

The film, which features segments of 18 gay and lesbian comedians, will screen in Phoenix at Harkins Tempe Marketplace 16, AMC Desert Ridge 18 and AMC Ahwatukee 24, and in Tucson at Century Park Place 20 (click here for tickets). All screenings will take place at 8 p.m.

OUT On Stage is hosted by Zach Noe Towers, who was named “One of the 10 comedians to watch in 2018,” by OUT Magazine and is the current host of "The Elite Daily Show" on Verizon’s Go90 Network.

OUT On Stage has been a real passion project for me,” Towers told Echo. “What an incredible experience it’s been to bring together such a gorgeously funny group of queer comedians. Each and every person featured in the content has such a unique perspective and I’m thrilled that we’re being given a platform for those hilarious voices to be heard.”

And though OUT On Stage is chock full of hilarious one liners, Towers feels that there's an important mission in between all the laughs.

"It's a truly frightening time in our country's history," Towers said. "While it feels like the current administration is trying to silence minority voices, we are so blessed to have Fathom Events doing the opposite by showcasing people in our community."

Towers, 32, hails from St Louis. "I went to Indiana State and studied musical theater," he said. "But instead of heading to New York I went to Los Angeles, where I became disheartened by the struggles of a TV actor."

But then his life took a decidedly different turn when a friend signed him up for a stand-up comedy show.

"I was bitten by that bug," he recalled. "It's an immediate gratification to make people laugh. That was seven years ago. They say you should give stand-up 10 years before you see any real results, though there are exceptions to the rule."

But Towers advises fledgling comedians not to take to the stage too quickly.

"There is such a thing in stand-up as being seen too soon," he said. "If you're seen before your voice is fully developed you may flounder when bigger opportunities are presented to you. There is so much failure in this pursuit but in my experience if you can stick it out the rewards are beyond amazing."

Towers spoke a bit about what his own stand-up act entails.

"My stand-up isn't very different from anyone else my age," he said. "I talk about sex, friendship, dating and family. While I think I have a bit of a dark side to my comedy, I like to keep things light and slightly absurd. I have a joke right now about getting a tattoo at the edge of my butthole. Of course it's not true, but everyone can find the joke in my butthole."

Amazingly, his parents have heard him tell such jokes.

"I've performed my entire uncensored set in front of both my parents," he said. "While they may groan and shake their heads, they are nothing but supportive."

Towers revealed that, in addition, to his hosting duties, he's one of the producers of OUT On Stage.

"Initially Dekkoo approached me about doing a stand-alone stand-up special," he explained. "I thought that might be too much to do so when they came to me with the concept of a variety special I jumped at the concept. It gives Dekkoo a chance to expand their own audience, and it gives me so much joy that 17 [additional] comics will be seen instead of just one."

Some of the comics do push the boundaries of good taste, but Towers is OK with that.

"I don't think any topic is off limits as long as the joke is more funny than disrespectful," he said.

The special, Towers said, was originally meant to be a six-episode TV series.

"My stand-up is no longer in it," he explains. "But I'm very grateful that I get to serve as host of this special. Dekkoo had requested a list of all the gay male comics I knew. I made a list of 40 and they chose from that. Then Dekkoo asked me for a list of women."

The result is a mix of gay and lesbian comics from a variety of demographics.

"My hope is that if there's a follow-up to this, that the voices will be even more diverse," Towers said. "We need specials like this now more than ever. Don’t let this special pass you by. It’s a moment in queer history and supporting it can do amazing things for our community.”

Towers hopes that being seen in OUT On Stage will lead to roles on television and in film.

"Keep your eyes peeled," he said.

OUT On Stage comes to Fathom Events courtesy of Dekkoo, an online streaming service which offers a variety of content geared toward gay male audiences. Watch the trailer for OUT On Stage here.


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