Mike Birbiglia

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Mike Birbiglia
Mike Birbiglia.jpg
Birth nameMichael Birbiglia
Born(1978-06-20) June 20, 1978 (age 34)[1]
Shrewsbury, Massachusetts, United States[1]
MediumStand-up comedy, Theatre, Radio, Television
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Mike Birbiglia
Mike Birbiglia.jpg
Birth nameMichael Birbiglia
Born(1978-06-20) June 20, 1978 (age 34)[1]
Shrewsbury, Massachusetts, United States[1]
MediumStand-up comedy, Theatre, Radio, Television

Mike Birbiglia (born June 20, 1978) is an American comedian, writer, actor, and director.


Early life[edit]

Birbiglia was born in Shrewsbury, Massachusetts, the son of Mary Jean (née McKenzie) and Vincent Paul Birbiglia.[2][3] He is of part Italian descent.[4] Birbiglia attended St. John's High School, Shrewsbury, Massachusetts for one year, and graduated from St. Mark's School, Southborough, Massachusetts in 1996[5][6] and subsequently graduated from Georgetown University in 2000.[7] During college Birbiglia performed as a member of the Georgetown Players Improv Troupe.[citation needed]

Professional work[edit]

Birbiglia has starred in three Comedy Central specials and has released three albums with Comedy Central Records: Two Drink Mike (2006), My Secret Public Journal Live (2007), and Sleepwalk With Me Live (2011). My Secret Public Journal Live was named one of the best comedy albums of the decade by the Onion AV Club[8] and Sleepwalk With Me Live debuted at #1 on the Billboard Magazine Comedy Charts.[9]

In 2008, Birbiglia opened Sleepwalk With Me, a one-man show that straddled standup comedy and theater, off-Broadway at the Bleecker Street Theatre.[10][11] The show was presented by Nathan Lane and the New York Times called it "simply perfect."[12] Time Out New York named it their "Show of the Year" in 2009.[13]

Birbiglia followed up his theatrical debut with Sleepwalk With Me & Other Painfully True Stories,[14] a book which debuted as # 29 on the hardcover nonfiction New York Times Bestseller List[15][16] and number four on the hardcover nonfiction section of the Washington Post Political Bookworm Best Sellers.[17] Birbiglia was also a finalist for the 2011 Thurber Prize for American Humor for Sleepwalk With Me & Other Painfully True Stories.[18]

In 2011, Birbiglia mounted his second one-man show, My Girlfriend's Boyfriend, which ran for four months off-Broadway and won the Lucille Lortel Award for Outstanding Solo Show.[19] Birbiglia is currently touring My Girlfriend's Boyfriend around the world with tour dates in the US, Australia, Canada, and the UK.

Birbiglia made his feature film debut with Sleepwalk with Me, a film based on his one-man show of the same name which he wrote, directed, and starred in. The film premiered at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival and won the NEXT Audience Award.[20] It was selected in the "Festival Favorites" category at the South By Southwest Film Festival in Austin, TX [21] and also appeared in the Nantucket Film Festival where it won the award for best writer/director.[22] The film was produced by Jacob Jaffke and This American Life's Ira Glass and stars Birbiglia, Lauren Ambrose, Carol Kane, James Rebhorn, and Cristin Milioti and has cameos by Kristen Schaal, Wyatt Cenac, David Wain, Jessi Klein, John Lutz and Marc Maron.[23]

In addition to starring in Sleepwalk With Me, Birbiglia has acted in the films Going the Distance, Cedar Rapids, and Your Sister's Sister, and in the HBO series, Girls.[24]

On This American Life[edit]

Birbiglia is a regular contributor to the Public Radio International-distributed program, This American Life.[25]

Personal life[edit]

Birbiglia lives with his wife, Jen Stein, on New York's Upper West Side.[26]

Birbiglia has rapid eye movement behavior disorder, which once caused him to run out of a second-story window of a motel he was staying in Walla Walla, Washington, while on tour. As a result of the accident, Birbiglia received 33 stitches in his leg.[27][28][29]

Because of his condition, Birbiglia's physician stated that while he travels, Mr. Birbiglia should never stay on any floor higher than ground level for fear of accidental suicide by way of leaping out of a window.


Awards and nominations[edit]

2012Gotham AwardsSleepwalk With Me (Film)Breakthrough ActorNominated
2012Sundance Film Festival Audience AwardSleepwalk With Me (Film)Best of NEXTWinner
2011Thurber Prize for American HumorSleepwalk With Me & Other Painfully True StoriesN/AFinalist
2011Lucille LortelMy Girlfriend's BoyfriendOutstanding Solo ShowWinner
2011Drama DeskMy Girlfriend's BoyfriendOutstanding Solo PerformanceNomination
2011Outer Critics CircleMy Girlfriend's BoyfriendOutstanding Solo ShowNomination
2009Drama DeskSleepwalk With MeOutstanding Solo PerformanceNomination
2009Lucille LortelSleepwalk With MeOutstanding Solo ShowNomination
2009Outer Critics CircleSleepwalk With MeOutstanding Solo ShowNomination
2009Nightlife AwardsSleepwalk With MeOutstanding Comedian in a Major EngagementWinner
2003ECNY AwardStand-up comedyBest Male Stand-upWinner


  1. ^ a b Jeffries, David. "Mike Birbiglia: Biography". allmusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved 2010-10-25. 
  2. ^ http://www.monocinema.com/comedian-mike-birbiglia-on-his-new-movie-sleepwalk-with-me.html
  3. ^ http://familytreemaker.genealogy.com/users/p/a/t/Edward-J-Patton-NY/WEBSITE-0001/UHP-0733.html
  4. ^ http://www.stltoday.com/entertainment/movies/reviews/comedian-birbiglia-invites-us-to-sleepwalk/article_8ccc2dd8-fc7f-11e1-8e1c-0019bb30f31a.html
  5. ^ Birnbach, Lisa; Kidd, Chip, True Prep: It's a Whole New Old World, Random House Digital, Inc., 2010. Cf. p.68
  6. ^ "Mike Birbiglia '96 Comedy Show", St. Mark's School website, Thursday, May 5, 2011
  7. ^ Regen, Heather (October 7, 2010). "Considerate comedy from Mike Birbiglia". Georgetown Voice. 
  8. ^ The A.V. Club Staff November 16, 2009. "The best comedy albums of the decade | Music | Best of". The Onion. Retrieved 2010-09-13. 
  9. ^ "Comedy Albums, Week of May 7, 2011". Billboard Magazine. Retrieved April 2, 2012. 
  10. ^ Scheck, Frank (2008-11-17). "For Cryin' & Laughin' Out Loud". New York Post. Retrieved 2010-09-13. 
  11. ^ "Theater Review: Sleepwalk With Me – Theater and Musical Production Reviews". Variety. Retrieved 2010-09-13. 
  12. ^ Genzlinger, Neil (2008-11-14). "Theater Review – 'Sleepwalk With Me' – Mike Birbiglia in a One-Man Show at the Bleecker Street Theater". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-09-13. 
  13. ^ Borden, Jane (December 18, 2009). "Best (and Worst) of 2009". Time Out New York. Retrieved April 2, 2012. 
  14. ^ Birbiglia, Mike (2010). Sleepwalk With Me and Other Painfully True Stories. Simon & Schuster. ISBN 978-1-4391-5799-2. 
  15. ^ "Sleepwalk With Me and Other Painfully True Stories Hits NY Times Bestseller List". BroadwayWorld.com. October 21, 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-24. 
  16. ^ Schuessler, Jennifer (October 22, 2010). "Best Sellers: Hardcover Nonfiction". New York Times. Retrieved 2010-10-23. 
  17. ^ Levingston, Steven (October 24, 2010). "Political Bookworm: Book World: Best Sellers". Washington Post. Retrieved 2010-10-29. 
  18. ^ McCarthy, Sean (August 22, 2011). "2011 Thurber Prize Finalists: Mike Birbiglia, David Rakoff, and Rick Reilly". The Comic's Comic. Retrieved April 2, 2012. 
  19. ^ Jones, Kenneth. "Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson, Chad Deity, Angels, Christian Borle, Laurie Metcalf Are Lortel Winners". Playbill.com. Retrieved April 2, 2012. 
  20. ^ Rich, Katey. "Top Sundance Prizes Go To Beasts Of the Southern Wild, The House I Live In, And More". Cinemablend.com. Retrieved 16 February 2012. 
  21. ^ Odam, Matthew (15 February 2012). "SXSW adds Seth MacFarlane, ‘Blue Like Jazz’, ‘Sleepwalk With Me’ and more". Austin360.com. Retrieved February 16, 2012. 
  22. ^ "Mike Birbiglia's Sleepwalk With Me Wins Nantucket Film Festival Award". theater mania. Retrieved 25 June 2012. 
  23. ^ "Sleepwalk With Me (2011)". imdb. Retrieved 2 April 2012. 
  24. ^ "Mike Birbiglia". imdb.com. Retrieved 2 April 2012. 
  25. ^ "Contributors List: Mike Birbiglia". This American Life. Chicago Public Radio. Retrieved 2010-09-27. 
  26. ^ McElroy, Steven (November 5, 2008). "Sleepwalking His Way From Comedy Club to Theater". New York Times. 
  27. ^ "Spending The Night With Sleepwalker Mike Birbiglia". Fresh Air. WHYY. 18 October 2010. Retrieved 27 October 2010. 
  28. ^ "Mike Birbiglia" (podcast). The Adam Carolla Show. October 14, 2010. Retrieved 2010-10-27. 
  29. ^ Climek, Chris (October 9, 2009). "Comedian Mike Birbiglia returns to the scene of the crime". Washington Examiner. Retrieved 2010-10-27. 

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