8 p.m. Saturday, Pikes Peak Center, 190 S. Cascade Ave., $49.50-$74.50; 888-929-7849, pikespeakcenter.com
Cedric the Entertainer's latest Netflix special, "Live from the Ville," starts with a party: The Tennessee State University marching band dances down the aisles of Nashville's Ryman Auditorium, its brassy sound accompanied by chants of "Cedric the Entertainer." Cedric joins in the last few moments, surveying the audience with the cool confidence of someone who's considered a comedy king before launching into a bit about today's exercise obsession.
Cedric's sets often feature stories that highlight his amused resignation to the world's ridiculousness, occasionally dropping into social commentary. He's starred in stand-up specials and toured the country several times. Acting credits include "The Steve Harvey Show," "The Soul Man," "Barbershop" and "Madagascar."
His friends are equally funny. For the past couple of years, he's been on the Comedy Get Down tour with Eddie Griffin, D.L. Hughley, George Lopez and Charlie Murphy. Before that, he teamed with Steve Harvey, D.L. Hughley and Bernie Mac for their Kings of Comedy tour, filmed by Spike Lee and turned into the documentary "The Original Kings of Comedy."
"You're out there with pros who are doing it in a very professional manner. All these guys are extremely funny, so you gotta step your game up. You gotta be ready to play. It's like being part of a championship team," Cedric says. "I'm the Kevin Durant of comedy. I just move around and go for the championship wins."
This Saturday, he takes the Pikes Peak Center stage with longtime collaborator George Lopez. Lopez has a similar brand of socially conscious storytelling, though he might be best known for hit television shows "George Lopez" and "Lopez Tonight."
"George is one of the best comedians out there," Cedric says. "He's a risk-taker. He's innovative. He's also the type of guy who's giving. If he sees a punchline for you or if he has something he thinks will be great for your joke, he's quick to give you those kind of things."
The comedians are to perform two back-to-back sets Saturday. Cedric plans to discuss recent developments in his life, such as the unexpected expense of his daughter's eighth-grade graduation. Cedric and Lopez might even perform joint material, though that's not fixed.
"We have these sketch ideas that we'll just toy around with, and they're usually really impromptu and improvish," Cedric says. "It'll be a great time."
Caleigh Derreberry, The Gazette