Top 15 Comedians

Ted Alexandro#8. TED ALEXANDRO

 

For Bellerose native Ted Alexandro, a fixture on the New York City comedy scene for decades, the drive to pursue stand-up came a little later in life.

“I’d always been a fan [of comedy], but I didn’t necessarily think I’d be a comedian,” he said. “I always wanted to do something creative; I studied jazz piano in college, I was involved in art. I had kind of this winding route.”

However, while an undergrad at City College of New York, Alexandro and fellow student Hollis James, still Alexandro’s writing partner to this day, began experimenting with writing sketch comedy and he was immediately hooked.

“Once I started doing sketch comedy it kind of clicked,” he said. “This is something I really enjoy.”

Alexandro began performing sketches with Hollis during the day and dabbling with open mics at night, but didn’t make the leap to pursuing comedy as a full-time gig for years. Instead, after graduating from City College, Alexandro pursued a Masters in Education at Queens College, teaching at public elementary schools throughout Queens for five years while trekking into the city every night after work to perform at clubs.

The dichotomy of his day and night jobs became more pronounced as his career took off, reaching a surreal point when he left work one day to perform for national audiences on Late Night with Conan O’Brien. Although he didn’t tell a soul at his school, a few parents recognized him the next day.

“To be doing Conan at night and waking up to go teach in the morning was interesting, but it was also a realization,” he said. “I was starting to get some paid work, and I thought maybe it’s time for me to see if I can do this full time.”

That was 16 years ago, and since Alexandro has experienced a slew of career milestones, including half-hour specials on Comedy Central, performances on most major late night shows, including The Late Show with David Letterman and Jimmy Kimmel Live!, and appearances on TV shows such as Inside Amy Schumer and Entourage, in which he played himself.

His teaching past has also come into play with his latest project, the comedy web series “Teachers Lounge,” produced and written with his college friend James, which is set entirely in a school teachers’ lounge and based off Alexandro’s five years in that profession. Each show is averaging tens of thousands of views, and has featured guest performances from the likes of Lewis Black,

Dave Attell, Judah Friedlander and Michael Che. Alexandro and James are currently working on a TV pilot for the series, which already has funding and a producer attached.

Called a “New York fixture as firm as bedrock,” by Time Out, Alexandro, who now lives in Astoria, says he loves helping out newer comics starting out in the city.

“One of the nice things about the comedy scene here is the veterans that have been doing it a while help out the folks who are coming up,” he said. “Especially with my teaching background, its something I kind of take to. I like to pass it along.”

Alexandro appears regularly at the Comedy Cellar, and lists all his appearances on his website.

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Posted by on Dec 30 2015. Filed under It's List, Uncategorized. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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