Bridget Everett has always been naughty. From constantly getting in trouble with high school teachers for “saying dumb shit,” to her appearances on Inside Amy Schumer, Everett has harnessed her tendency toward bawdy humor with a successful ongoing stint in New York City’s cabaret scene.
A classically trained singer, she has spent over a decade making a name for herself at popular nightclubs. Crooning tunes like “Proud of What Your Mama Gave You,” a catchy song that encourages all women to accept their breasts, no matter their shape or size, and “What I Gotta Do,” a sultry number about fellatio, Everett’s comedy is the kind of laugh-out-loud stuff that makes you blush a deeper red than the comedian’s signature low-cut dress. “It’s a nice way to get people fired up,” says Everett of “What Your Mama Gave You,” a song dedicated to her own mother’s “beaver tail titties.”
Born and raised in Manhattan, KS, Everett may have been fated to end up in the big city. “I was voted most likely to win an Academy Award,” she says, “so I don’t think people are surprised.” As far as taking her show back to her hometown? Maybe not right now. “I might accidentally motorboat my fifth grade teacher.”
Everett’s first Comedy Central special, Gynecological Wonder, premiered last July to rave reviews, with Flavorwire saying, “Everett barrels through her set list with a force that translates surprisingly well from the intimacy of the theater to the more staged intimacy of television.”
You’d think with all the talk of breasts and other lady parts that Everett may be pushing limits just to get a reaction. Not so, according to her. “When I get home I take off my shoes and bra — why not do that on stage?” And as far as her own boobs, Everett says matter-of-factly, “They’re just tits. They’re fun and they’re beautiful and they’re great to sling around.”
Everett is easy to talk to, humble in her success, and unfazed by prying questions. In interactive performances of “What Your Mama,” she walks through the audience, pointing at various women as she sings about their chests.
When asked how she decides what kinds of “tits” to reference during the song she chuckles and quickly explains her method: Have some backup descriptions and see what audience breasts inspire her. Our personal favorite? Mouse-trap titties.
It’s no longer an anomaly for a female comedian to be successful in her 40s — just look at Tina Fey and Amy Poehler. But Everett’s R-rated humor, packaged in tiny bright dresses, a towering body (she stands six feet tall), and big lungs, is something new entirely. Or, rather, something old that’s new again — cabaret. With European origins dating back to the 16th century, cabaret performances are defined by their location, usually in intimate settings like cafes or nightclubs, and their content, which tends toward mature, adult themes.
“Cabaret is a dated term,” explains Everett, adding that some people don’t even know what the term means. To her it’s people like cabaret performers Murray Hill and Kiki & Herb. She describes them as “lawless, funny, and razor sharp,” and we’d be remiss to not describe Everett in the same way.
Watching her shake her stuff on stage — and in the laps of strangers — you’d never know that she suffered from show fright. “Every time I ask, ‘Why do I do this to myself?'” she says, adding that while she isn’t officially medicated, she could use some beta blockers. A big fan of Chardonnay, Everett drinks a glass or two before each performance to take the edge off. In some videos you can even see her swilling the good stuff from a brown paper bag (which we later read is actually an insulated wine-holder. Bridget, you pro).
As Everett snakes through crowds, audience members often look like the scared ones, giggling nervously as they accidentally lock eyes with the broad heading their way. “Some people are sitting there stunned, a little paralyzed,” says Everett. “But I’ll see something in their eyes that says they want more.” Which begs the question: Has Bridget Everett ever gone home with someone from her audience?
“Just once. It doesn’t seem fair,” she says. “My male comedian friends are gettin’ tail left and right. It doesn’t work the same way.”
At the end of the day, though, Everett isn’t strutting her stuff to get laid (although she says that would be a nice work perk). She’s doing it because she loves it. “It’s like going to a party and meeting a new friend,” she says of performing.
Speaking of new friends, Everett isn’t giving up hope on taking home a Charleston fan. Take note fellas, she says, “I like ’em big and burly.”