Joe Hernandez-Kolski Shares His Life in an Entertaining, Comedic Voice
Brains, wits, charm, and comedy -- the Polish-Mexican-American one-man act that is Joe Hernandez-Kolski recently rocked the Bootleg Theater here in Los Angeles with his hilarious yet compelling solo show, Awake. Quite the boisterous fellow from Chicago, Illinois by way of Princeton University, Mr. Hernandez-Kolski makes himself the ultimate metaphor, a symbol of sorts, of those randomly fleeting thoughts we sometimes try to keep buried in our subconscious.
officially ended its run at The Bootleg, Mr. Hernandez-Kolski, who worked with director Benjamin Byron Davis on the solo show, creatively and imaginatively covered a lot of ground in his relatively short performance, be it sexual relations, career development, social networking, and death.
Intersecting the hilarious yet substantive social commentary were a series of breakout break-dancing performances by Mr. Hernandez-Kolski himself, adding a unique layer of entertainment rarely found in any corner of the Los Angeles performing arts scene.
Ultimately, Mr. Hernandez-Kolski makes sense of all the issues he presents through enlightened self-reflection and weighted commentary, such as through the opening sequence of the thoughts going through his head as he receives oral sex, later in the act when he exposes the true meaning of Facebook culture, or ultimately, at show’s end, when all the emotions come to a tee as inner tension boils over and results in an outer explosion.
In what was essentially a cathartic autobiography, Mr. Hernandez-Kolski managed to connect with audiences through grounded humility, all while seamlessly shifting back and forth between comedic observations and dramatic reflections.
An Emmy-winner, poet, writer, and actor, Mr. Hernandez-Kolski also ultimately demonstrated how he fused each of his tangible titles into an intangible human experience. A “coming-of-middle-age story where I do my best to find the humor in tragedy,” he calls Awake.
Also a two-time HBO Def Poet in addition to earning his Bachelor’s in History from Princeton, Mr. Hernandez-Kolski has definitely “awakened” to his true calling as a gregarious talent, balancing spoken word with energetic dramatics and humorous wit.
All that is left is for audiences to continue to “awaken” to his amazing God-given talents. In biding your time before Mr. Hernandez-Kolski returns to the public eye again, check out his website
and show him your support.
Photo Credit: Patti McGuire