Apr 29, 2024 - Things to Do

Venezuelan comedian brings his act to Portland

Photo illustration of Venezuelan comedian, Angelo Colina collaged with abstract shapes.

Venezuelan standup comic Angelo Colina plays Portland tomorrow. Illustration: Allie Carl/Axios; Photo: Angelo Colina

A Venezuelan-American comedian who is selling out shows with his entirely Spanish-language sets is bringing his act to Portland on Tuesday.

Why it matters: The surging popularity of 29-year-old Angelo Colina comes as demand for Spanish-language content grows.

  • The U.S. is home to the second-largest population of Spanish speakers in the world, behind Mexico.

The intrigue: Colina tells Axios he estimates 15%-20% of his crowds are not native Spanish speakers, and he says his national tour intentionally visits cities without robust Latino populations.

  • A lot more Americans know some Spanish as a second language now, thanks to musicians like Bad Bunny, travel abroad and even apps like Duolingo.
  • Colina, who moved to the U.S. at age 24 to help support his family in Salt Lake City, tells Axios he didn't always perform in Spanish.
  • "It was mostly knowing that everything that I wrote in Spanish and then translated to English was better than writing in English from the start," says Colina, who now lives in New York.

What to expect: Colina riffs on the crowd and their different backgrounds, having fun with accents such as Argentinian ("they're always trying to convince you of something") and of course his own Venezuelan dialect.

Between the lines: Colina attributed his invitation to the White House last year to the fact that he performs in Spanish.

If you go: He plays the Helium Comedy Club in Portland at 8pm Tuesday. Tickets start at $27.

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