Arts & Culture » Fall Preview

Beth Stelling returns to Chicago to tape her new comedy album at the Beat Kitchen

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Beth Stelling's first album, Sweet Beth, couldn't have been more aptly named; between the former Chicagoan's toothy smile and her soft delivery she's the definition of "sweet," even while joking about her mother's death virginity and brittle penises. In the past year the LA-based stand-up has been busier than ever, making frequent late-night talk show appearances, honing her 30-minute Comedy Central special (premiering October 10), and popping up in almost virtually every list of up-and-coming comedians. But just like a good midwestern girl, she's returning to her roots to take the next step. Even though she often pokes fun at her small-town upbringing ("Most people in Ohio don't realize that you can just pack a bag . . . and leave"), Stelling is at her best in a familiar, intimate setting, so it's no wonder she chose the Beat Kitchen to record her second album. It will be exciting to see her perform such a monumental set in a venue she came up in, showing that she's no longer just sweet but also confident and, above all, hilarious.

Tue 9/15, 7 and 10 PM, Beat Kitchen, 2100 W. Belmont, beatkitchen.com, $12.

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