Its Kismet: Sex and the City comedian Mario Cantone plays Hard Rock Live on Thursday, which also happens to be gay National Coming Out Day.
I am lucky I am where I am because I was always out, says Cantone, a New Yorker who last week celebrated his first wedding anniversary with husband Jerry Dixon, a Broadway musical director.
Dixon has written two new songs for Cantones Hard Rock gig, his first full-scale South Florida performance in about eight years. He plans to take the new one-man show to Broadway sometime in 2013.
Cantone, who says he prefers singing to telling jokes, will reprise some material from his previous show, Laugh Whore, which played New York and was recorded for Showtime. Sometimes people yell out for the old s--- and you have to give them what they want.
Will Cantone perform his blistering impersonations of Liza Minnelli and Judy Garland?
You bet your ass! he says. I have a brand new Liza number that Jerry wrote. Some new stuff with her and her mother. She doesnt like it, but I dont give a s---. I dont want to hang out with her anyways. Shes a brilliant performer, but shes exhausting.
Minnelli, who sang Single Ladies when Cantones character Anthony married Stanford in the 2010 film Sex and the City 2, once told him, I dont mind you making fun of me, but you make fun of my mother!
I said, I dont make fun of your mother, I put her on a pedestal, Cantone responded. I do her at her very best in the 1960s. Im doing [Liza] now. I dont do her f---ed up. She thinks Im doing her drunk. I love her. I dont do people I dont love.
Being gay has sometimes hurt Cantones career, he says. I was booked on Johnny Carson in Oct. 1986. I was booked with Lily Tomlin. A week before, I got a call [from a Tonight Show producer]. I looked at the tape, and your act has a gay sensibility, so they canceled it.
Cantone says his most loyal fan base is not gay men. They like Margaret Cho, they like Kathy Griffin. Im guilty of that, too. They like the women performers, and I dont resent it. My biggest audience is straight, and thats how I got where I am. Ive never been on Ellen, and The View has kept me alive.
At 52, Cantone says he feels old (Everybody gets younger, isnt it horrifying?) and doesnt like new media.
According to Cantones Wikipedia entry, he was born in Stoneham, Mass. and Sydney, Australia.
One time Wikipedia said I had a thing about monkeys. I dont give a s--- about monkeys! Like Im Norma Desmond [in Sunset Boulevard] and I keep a dead monkey in a box, he says. My good twin was born in Sydney, Australia, and my bad twin was born in Stoneham, Mass. Well, I was born in Stoneham, and I dont like monkeys!
As for Twitter and Facebook, just shoot me in the f---ing head! he says. There are so many times people post on Facebook, This is a great scene from a great movie. Youll enjoy it. Well, I didnt enjoy it! ... They take pictures of their meals: Puke on a plate! Enjoy it!
Mario Cantone appears 8 p.m. Thursday at Hard Rock Live, 1 Seminole Way, near Hollywood. Tickets $39-$69. www.hardrocklivehollywoodfl.com.