After attending the first preview of Colin Quinn’s “Long Story Short” in East Hampton this week, Jerry Seinfeld entered the green room looking trim and prosperous in his dark jeans, jacket and open-collar white shirt.
Shaking hands aimably with those who greeted him, Seinfeld answered a few questions about Quinn’s one-man show, which he directed for a twice-extended Broadway run. The 75-minute comic history of the world officially opens tonight at Guild Hall’s John Drew Theatre, not far from the $32-million home Seinfeld and his wife, Jessica, bought from Billy Joel about 10 years ago. It runs through June 26.
How is that the comic best known for creating and starring in a show about nothing ended up directing a show about everything?
“This guy conned me into it,” Seinfeld said, pointing to Quinn seated next to him.
“And he wouldn’t take a penny for it,” Quinn said, adding that he has another one-man show for Seinfeld to direct — on the economy. “After he sees it, he won’t be able to resist.”
“History, economics. We’re working our way through all the eighth-grade subjects,” Seinfeld quipped.
In Seinfeld’s eponymous NBC series, which ended a nine-year run in 1998 but remains a hit in reruns, the title character pitches “a show about nothing” to the network. Before “Seinfeld,” the comic from Massapequa was a rising stand-up star. One of his early jokes poked fun at his South Shore hometown: “Massapequa — that’s Indian for by-the-mall.”
What's up next for Seinfeld? "The Marriage Ref" returns to NBC this summer. "I'm on with Ricky Gervais," he says. "That should be interesting."
What’s he been up to lately — besides directing for gratis? Stand-up, of course. “He just played to 13,000 in London,” Quinn volunteered.
Well-known as a Mets fans — Keith Hernandez appeared as himself in a couple of “Seinfeld” episodes — we asked the comic if he ever considered bailing out the team after the Bernie Madoff debacle. “I don’t have that kind of money,” Seinfeld said.
“Maybe that’s because you work for free for this guy,” a reporter observed.
Imagine that. We got a laugh from Jerry Seinfeld and Colin Quinn.