(photo by. Ameen Belbahari)
What can I say about Ivan Hernandez that would truly give the man justice. I used to call him the Tornado, due to his Southernly origins and his habit of ripping shit up on stage. Upon reflection I should have called him the Hurricane because of his Floridian history. Never the less Ivan stands as one of the greatest phenomenons in the City’s comedy universe and one of my recent favorite comedians.
From the first time I saw him riffing geographical connections at Club Deluxe I’ve grown to appreciate his style of humor, his nerdy subject choices, and his strong delivery. I wish I could clone myself 50 times over, or could bus in Warren Ellis fans just so Ivan could get the audience he deserves. Even if the audience is unfamiliar with his references/point of view, Ivan performs with so much conviction that it’s hard not to be charmed.
In addition to being a great comedy talent, he also has a great comedy mind; one of biggest/brightest comedy nerds I know. Bamford, Benson, Oswalt, you think you know these people? Go talk to Ivan and you’ll realize you have no frickin’ idea about the intricacies of comedy apprecition. Some of my favorite moments in my comedy life have included Ivan: Kaseem’s legendary/unsung set at the Monkey Club, the pouch incident, and Hardly Strictly Bluegrass w/ Nicole Calasich and Ashley Bennett.
Ivan is a big deal in my life. He’s a constant reminder of how much sacrifice, dedication, and raw skills you have to bring to the table and overall that learning how to bake bread could be a life saver. Happy Birthday Ivan!