The grounds of the Shrine resembled the Vegas Strip for Festival Supreme. (Jonathan Graves/LOL-LA)
Over the weekend, Tenacious D presented Festival Supreme, a one day stand-up and musical act celebration. Led by Jack Black, this curated selection of some of the most wild acts in comedy and music took over the Shrine Expo Hall & Grounds in South Los Angeles on Saturday.
Outfitted like a huge Vegas showroom and getaway, the entrance boasted a neon lit sign welcoming you, and behind it, the main stage glittered with a star-studded background that would present the headlining comedy acts. Early in the day Amy Poehler (“Parks and Recreation,” Inside Out) made an appearance with Black on stage dressed as an on-the-road rockstar. Coming off her film success, Poehler told Black that she grew disenchanted with film and TV and needed to go back to a secret, unannounced comedy show tour feel. Then like a seasoned vet, the comedy pioneer invited an attendee up on stage to learn about her life. Along with Black they performed a musical comedy routine that turned into a duet of “The Rose,” which had the filled-up main auditorium crowd in tears from laughter – or maybe a weird sense of raw truth in her jokes.
Following Poehler’s abruptly short act, there was a mass exodus over to the second stage for “Parks and Rec”’s Aubrey Plaza’s set. Right before her scheduled time, Black came out to inform the crowd that Plaza was unable to make it, so instead we would be seeing a young, up-and-coming act named Yolanda. Slowly guests started to leave as Yolanda took the stage, dancing seductively to latin music. Unaware that Yolanda was actually Plaza in disguise, pissed-off folks left. Recognizing it was her, many did stay intrigued by her character. But as she started performing very Plaza-like jokes in a stereotypical Latina caricature, the jokes fell flat. Maybe it was just some other level of irony the audience wasn’t getting.
As the night went on, the shows pulled more audiences. Andrew WK played a set of his motivational “Party Hard” music, enthusiastically telling people that we “do what we like and we like what we do.” Outside, the South African duo Die Antwoord performed faves like “Baby’s On Fire” and “Fatty Boom Boom.”
Inside, the Kids in the Hall reunion drew in a huge crowd as the Canadian comedians came out in wedding dresses to perform old and new skits that sent longtime fans into thunderous laughter. The night closed out with Tenacious D performing jazz, followed by Richard Cheese’s special brand of lounge versions of today’s hits. His version of System of a Down’s “Chop Suey!” ended the night on a chill note sending people to bed.