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Self-therapy: Comedian explores ‘common bond’ of tragedy

Comedian Christopher Titus will perform two shows at The Stage at Santa Ana Star on Saturday, June 15. (Courtesy of Santa Ana Star Casino)

Christopher Titus just broke in 70 minutes of brand-new comedy.

It’s only taken him months to get to this point.

Yet, he enjoys the challenge of stand-up comedy.

“This is going to be my ninth special,” he says during a recent interview. “Life keeps happening and as long as you pay attention, the material is there.”

Titus has been performing for more than 30 years.

He found a mainstream audience with his Fox series, “Titus,” in 2000. He was the star, executive producer and co-creator of the series.

Since then, he’s kept his hands in film and TV projects, as well as remaining on tour with stand-up comedy.

He describes his latest show as “the darkest that I’ve ever done.”

“It’s weird,” he says. “The stories I tell about my mom in the mental hospital. There were stories that happened in my life that I couldn’t make funny. In the last two or three years, I crossed a plateau and the tragedy isn’t funny, but what happens around it can be funny.”

Through the soul searching, Titus has come to the conclusion that “tragedy is the one thing that can unite us.”

“Life is just what happens between the tragedies,” he says. “I tell these stories that happened to me. I would go with my mom to biker bars when I was 4.”

He calls his childhood “different” from most.

And one subject he never tackled until now is the death of his sister, Kirsten, a few years ago.

“She killed herself,” he says. “The hardest thing was talking about my sister Kirsten, because she didn’t have a chance growing up. She didn’t really have a shot, and being raised with Mom, there was no chance.”

Titus has also used his life as a way to connect with audiences.

From his dysfunctional upbringing to losing custody of his children, it’s all fair game.

“I’m giving myself therapy so I don’t have to pay $150 an hour,” he says. “It doesn’t matter how much money you have. Tragedy happens to all of us, and it’s a common bond we all have.”

Titus is also open to opportunities to get back on TV – whether it’s a series or film.

“Show business eats whatever is in front of it. There’s always a new dish, and if you keep writing the same thing, then you’re done,” he says. “I love writing, and I have six scripts coming. I’m so blessed to have this job. It’s about always moving forward. Sometimes that’s the hardest thing – finding the next show.”