By Connor Beach
Comedian Gary Gulman got his first big break as a professional comic in 1999 when he performed as a relatively unknown at the Montreal comedy festival. That seven-minute performance was one of several turning points in Gulman’s career, which has spanned more than two decades and included appearances on almost all of the major late-night talk shows from “Conan” to “Jimmy Kimmel.”
Gulman, 47, said he developed his love for stand-up comedy at a young age, and began to hone his skills in bars around Boston where he attended college. By 1993, the Massachusetts native was performing on most nights, but didn’t have a break out moment until the show in Montreal.
“I got a deal with 20th Century Fox,” Gulman said. “I had been doing it for a very meager living up till then, but that was the turning point at which I was able to actually make a good living at it.”
From the first time he stepped on stage, Gulman said his goal was always to become a professional comedian, and he has had the good fortune and skill to turn that “foolhardy goal” into a reality.
Gulman’s second breakout moment came in 2004 when he featured on season two of the NBC reality show “Last Comic Standing.”
“That was really my big break as far as being noticed by a large audience… It wasn’t until ‘Last Comic Standing’ that I was able to sell out shows at comedy clubs and theaters,” Gulman said.
Although Gulman said performing on television is like “having a second birthday,” he described the connection with the audience at his stand-up shows as “intoxicating.”
Gulman is scheduled to bring his long storytelling style of comedy to The Paramount in Huntington for an hour-and-15-minute set next month.
“When I play a place like The Paramount the entire audience is there to see me, which gives me a lot of freedom to talk about what I enjoy talking about because I have built up some good will with these people,” Gulman said.
Gulman said that, although he has a new slate of jokes lined up for his upcoming show, fans can expect to hear them delivered with his usual tone, style and presentation.
Doors open at 6:30 p.m. for the 8 p.m. show on Friday, June 15. Tickets are $25-$45 and can be purchased at the box office or online at Paramountny.com.