In the ever-evolving business of making people laugh, the topic of romance and relationships has withstood the test of time — almost every comedian who has ever picked up a microphone has commented on love at some point. So when two stand-up comics who happen to be married to each other perform on the same stage, what else could they possibly talk about?
Moshe Kasher and Natasha Leggero became a comedy power couple when they married Oct. 11, 2015. Their “Honeymoon Tour,” which features a stand-up set from each and a joint encore where they bring couples onstage and offer them relationship counseling, includes a stop at the Wilbur Theatre Saturday.
“It’s the job of the stand-up comedian to look through the human experience and find the absurd,” says Kasher, “And there’s nothing more absurd than two animals who have biological needs but feel the extra need for things like love. And we all do stupid things to satisfy our heart’s [desires].”
Kasher knows the feeling well. He eyed Leggero from afar while they were doing comedy together in Los Angeles. When he finally worked up the courage to ask her out, they went for a drive that culminated with Leggero fishing around the floor of Kasher’s car looking for a lit cigarette and coming across some “rather large” lingerie. “I told her I don’t know whose those are, what those are, what kind of fabric that is, what fabric is, what the Industrial Revolution that led to large-scale garment manufacturing was, or the concept of undergarments in the first place,” Kasher says. Despite the incident and his dubious denials, Leggero described the date as a good time. The rest is history.
Since then, both comics have seen their careers take off. Leggero co-created and stars as Lillian Bellacourt in “Another Period” on Comedy Central, a show set in 1902 Newport, R.I., that she describes as “like if the Kardashians lived at Downton Abbey.” Leggero has also appeared on “Reno 911!,” “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia,” and “Chelsea Lately” among many other TV shows. Kasher has had plenty of TV exposure too and recently began hosting “Problematic,” a talk show on Comedy Central. His special “Live in Oakland” debuted on Netflix in 2012.
Despite those commitments, Kasher and Leggero still find the time to tour together. While the grind can be tough on comedians, having a partner on the road can take the sting out of the less bearable parts. “This tour has brought us closer and made it harder for me to go on tour alone,” says Leggero. “Many comedians will tell you that traveling is the worst part of the job.”
In addition to companionship of a spouse, both comics value the chance to have a knowledgeable and seasoned set of eyes evaluating their performances each night. Leggero says she’s taken a cue from Kasher and has learned to put more emphasis on closing her show with a bang. Both say the tour has had a major impact on their writing, and their relationship in general has led to a shift in their onstage personas. “I used to say having a baby was a DUI from the universe,” says Leggero. “It’s important to keep growing and share your feelings and not stay in one persona that might not be true anymore.”
Kasher and Leggero say they revel in the other’s success more than their own. They alternate the first and second slot for each show as well, in the interest of fairness.
The highlight of each show is the encore, when they take the stage together and offer relationship advice to willing couples. The impromptu conversations often lead to fantastic results, such as a stop in Santa Cruz, Calif., that took an R-rated turn when a husband discussed buying a sex toy for his wife.
“One of the things we’ve learned through trial and error is that people who are really excited to get up onstage have been drinking,” Kasher says. “The more enthusiastic people are, the worse idea it is to bring them onstage. With people that are kind of reluctant you can find some of the most compelling, best stories.”
While this may seem like a prime opportunity to embarrass everyday people, the comics value the chance to actually help couples work through issues in a (somewhat) safe environment. Kasher and Leggero say that a very public airing of grievances can sometimes have a lovely effect on relationships, kind of like therapy.
“[Feedback] has only been positive. One couple even got married,” Leggero says. “They didn’t know what to do, we talked to them, and they tweeted us [later] saying they’re getting married and we helped them. We want a proposal onstage next.”
NATASHA LEGGERO AND MOSHE KASHER
At the Wilbur Theatre, July 29 at 7 p.m.. Tickets $29, 617-248-9700, www.thewilbur.com
Jon Mael can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org