Senator Al Franken sits down with late night legend David Letterman for a rare and exclusive conversation.
As the honorable gentleman from Minnesota publishes his new book, Al Franken, Giant of the Senate, we’ll hear the story of an award-winning comedian who decided to run for office — and then discovered why award-winning comedians tend not to do that. We’ll hear about what happens when the nation’s foremost progressive satirist gets a chance to serve in the United States Senate and, defying the low expectations of the pundit class, actually turns out to be good at it.
All tickets include a copy of Al Franken, Giant of the Senate by Al Franken.
This event is supported by Producers Circle member the Edythe Kenner Foundation (Robert and Lynda Safron). Learn more about the 92Y Producers Circle.
Senator Al Franken graduated from Harvard University. Before running for the Senate, Al spent 37 years as a comedy writer, author and radio talk show host and has taken part in seven USO tours, visiting our troops overseas in Germany, Bosnia, Kosovo, Uzbekistan, Iraq, Afghanistan and Kuwait. Al was first elected to the Senate in 2008 and re-elected in 2014.
As the longest-running host in late night television history at more than 32 years, David Letterman is one of the most influential, critically acclaimed and honored personalities in the history of television. Often imitated but never matched, Letterman presents, night after night, an unpredictable hour of inspired interviews and innovative comedy.
The Late Show with David Letterman made its debut on Aug. 30, 1993, and it quickly went on to become one of the most talked-about and critically acclaimed programs of the year. More than 21 years later, the Late Show continues to deliver inventive and imaginative comedy every night. For its efforts, the Late Show has earned six Emmy Awards as Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Program and has received a staggering 72 Emmy nominations.
Letterman's first network break came in 1978 on the CBS variety series Mary, starring Mary Tyler Moore. In November of that year, he made the first of his 22 appearances on The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson. He also guest-hosted Tonight numerous times.
In 1980, Letterman began hosting an Emmy Award-winning morning comedy-variety program, The David Letterman Show, which ran for three months on NBC. His critically acclaimed show Late Night with David Letterman premiered in February 1982. Throughout its 11½ years, Late Night was honored with many awards, including five Emmys and 35 Emmy nominations.
From the start, Letterman has been critically applauded for redefining the talk-show genre. In December 2012, Letterman was an honoree at the prestigious “35th Annual Kennedy Center Honors,” which recognizes recipients for their lifetime contributions to American culture through the performing arts in dance, music, theater, opera, motion pictures and television. In 1992, he received the prestigious George Foster Peabody Award for taking “one of TV's most conventional and least inventive forms — the talk show — and infusing it with freshness and imagination.” In March 2011, Letterman was awarded the prestigious Johnny Carson Award for Comedic Excellence at Comedy Central’s first annual “The Comedy Awards.” Letterman has also won two American Comedy Awards as Funniest Male Performer in a Television Series, and in 2012, he received the Career Achievement Award from the Television Critics Association. Letterman was also honored as “Favorite Late Night Talk Show Host” at the 31st Annual People's Choice Awards in 2005.
Letterman was born in Indianapolis, Indiana.