After Mourning Williams, Laughter Proves Best Medicine at Oddball Fest in Mansfield

Louis C.K. performed at the Oddball Comedy and Curiosity Festival, presented by, at the Xfinity Center in Mansfield on Aug. 15.
Louis C.K. performed at the Oddball Comedy and Curiosity Festival, presented by, at the Xfinity Center in Mansfield on Aug. 15. –Robert E. Klein for the Boston Globe

It was a somber week for the world of comedy, as the community mourned the death of Robin Williams, who passed away on Monday.

Local fans got a chance to laugh away some of the pain on Friday night, when the Oddball Comedy and Curiosity Festival took over the Xfinity Center in Mansfield.

The festival, presented by, gave a touching tribute to Williams during the show’s intermission. Host Brody Stevens introduced a video segment featuring the Academy Award-winning actor, which he shot for the website last year.

You can check out the clip embedded below.

The nearly sold-out crowd gave a standing ovation to the late legend, whose work inspired generations of comedians to take the stage.


Aside from the poignant interlude, the Oddball show proved to be a side-splitting good time full of comics who brought their A-game.

Headliner Louis C.K., who grew up in the Boston area, didn’t mind playing to the locals and gave a crisply crafted set that had the audience laughing the whole time. It was pure, vintage stuff from the comedy juggernaut.

It’s always a treat when you get the chance to watch a master comedian like C.K. perform in his prime.

Amy Schumer was another stand-out of the night and she crushed during her turn at the mike. The “Inside Amy Schumer’’ creator took a cue from fellow Oddball performer Hannibal Buress and donned a jumpsuit emblazened with her face for the festival.

Schumer’s popularity has been on the rise over the past year thanks to her critically acclaimed show, and the crowd gave her a ton of love even before she said her first joke.

Rounding out the second half of performances were veterans Dave Atell and Sarah Silverman, who were at their raunchiest. Atell arguably had the best set of the night, as his absurdist, hyper-sexual humor was on point.

Highlights from the first half of the show include Buress’ music and dance infused bits, which poked fun at some of the more ridiculous lyrics in rap. He’s another comedian to look out for in the next few years.

A woman in a straight-jacket at the Oddball Comedy and Curiosty Festival in Mansfield on Aug. 15. —Matt Juul for

NBC’s “Undateable’’ star Chris D’Elia had a shakey opening, but found his stride in the middle and, overall, killed it on stage. D’Elia’s “Undateable’’ cast member Brett Morin, who hails from Connecticut, gave an energetic showing as the opener, while Jerrod Carmichael provided a smooth set as the night’s second act.

Fans who went to the festival early got a chance to see some of the more curious aspects of the tour, which included vaudeville-style freak show performers and a second stage featuring lesser-known comedians.

It was an odd mix of outdoor comedy and bizarre circus antics that gave the festival a fun vibe.

As Oddball, now in its second year, continues to tour the country, the fest will return to New England for its show in Hartford, Conn. on Aug. 23.

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