Brow Beat

Comedian Tig Notaro on What It Was Like to Perform Stand-Up Topless

Tig Notaro at Sundance.

Photo by Larry Busacca/Getty Images

Check out all Slate’s interviews from the 2015 Sundance Film Festival.

Tig Notaro is no novice when it comes to shocking crowds. Her biggest breakthrough came in 2012, when she opened an instantly legendary set at Los Angeles’ Largo nightclub by announcing, “Thank you, thanks, I have cancer. Thank you, I have cancer. Really, thank you.” But nothing could prepare the audience for set at New York City’s Town Hall last November, where she stunned attendees by removing her shirt and performing the rest of her set topless.

We sat down with Notaro at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, where she unveiled her new documentary Tig, and we asked her how she came up with the idea, how it felt to perform without a shirt on, and whether the venue had any idea what was coming.

Interview booked by Raquel Bruno. Executive produced by Ayana Morali.