Comedy duo the Lucas Bros, comprised of 33-year-olds Keith and Kenny Lucas, will perform at 8 p.m. Feb 28 and at 8 and 10:30 p.m. March 1 and 2 at the Comedy Attic.
These twins originally planned to become lawyers. After attending law school in New York City for a while, however, Kenny knew he didn’t want to pursue a degree in law and began attending comedy clubs as a way to relieve stress.
Eventually, he jumped on stage and tried it out for himself. He even took a comedy class, and following the class, he performed a stand-up routine for his classmates.
“I did that, and I bombed,” Kenny said. “I bombed horribly, but I fell in love with comedy and so I just kept at it. Eventually Keith joined me in my pursuit of comedic greatness and now we bomb together.”
When Kenny first approached Keith about joining him in comedy, Keith said Kenny used his persuasive legal skills to convince him to stop pursuing a law degree. Kenny said it was probably the most legally proficient he has ever been.
Now, this comedic duo lives and works together. The brothers said they’re closer now than they were as kids because their lives revolve around their work together and comedy itself.
“We talk almost constantly about comedy,” Kenny said. “If it’s not it’s about the nature of comedy, it’s about our relationship to the philosophy of comedy. Everything sort of centers around comedy.”
“We like to approach it theoretically, and we like to approach it practically,” Keith said. “We sort of try to study the form itself, and we take that and we apply that to how we develop our material.”
While creating material, the duo said they often ask themselves what it means to be funny. They also try to think about the origins of comedy, going all the way back to the writings of Aristotle.
The Lucas Bros’ approach to comedy is scientific. Watching their stand-up, one may not guess these 33-year-old identical twins who talk slowly about doing drugs together actually have a very methodical creation process, but they do.
It starts when one brother has an idea for a joke. Then, that person will write out the joke, pass it off to the other person to see if they can write a better version, try out the joke on stage, record it, transcribe it and then, finally, write it out as dialogue.
Their production process is very dependent on teamwork, the brothers said. The fact that they are twins not only creates an uncommon on-stage presence, but it also serves as a way to collaborate and improve their comedy before they step up to the microphones.
“While we are twins and we have a similar lifestyle, we do on occasion disagree,” Kenny said. “I think that’s important to the process, having someone to challenge you, to question your assumptions and force you to think a little bit more about the structure and the concept of the joke. I think that it has made me a better comedian for sure and a better human being.”
“Likewise,” Keith said.
The two said their performance style has changed drastically since their first performance together.
In the beginning, the two said they were very awkward on stage and would barely interact with one another. They think it was because they were trying to make the normal, single-person stand-up comedy style work for two people.
Now, they have developed their own style that allows them to be more comfortable on stage.
“I think our dynamic as twins sort of forced us to create a style that accounts for the fact that it’s two people on stage that look exactly alike,” Keith said. “And so we tried to create a more conversational approach, not just with the audience but with each other.”
At the upcoming Comedy Attic shows, Kenny and Keith said people can expect to hear stories from their childhood, an examination of the core beliefs they learned as kids and the chaos that comes from our seemingly logical world.
“They can expect to see two guys who look exactly alike, standing on stage dressed almost similarly, mumbling about topics that they probably shouldn’t talk about,” said Kenny. “Hopefully they will find it funny.”
Tickets to this event are $12 for students and $15 for general admission.
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The event will be streamed on the IU Auditorium’s Facebook page.