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August 28, 2014, 3:10 am

DeRay Davis brings ‘freestyle comedy’ to Philly

The Dell Music Center’s 2012 “Essence of Entertainment” series offers a change of pace this week with the “Comedy Explosion” on Thursday, July 26, featuring Philly’s own Turae, DeRay Davis, Aries Spears and Dominique. Showtime is 7 p.m.

While this will be his first time playing Philadelphia’s recently updated outdoor venue in Fairmount Park, DeRay Davis is no stranger to the City of Brotherly Love, having performed at the Laff House on several occasions.

A familiar face to movie-goers, Davis, born Antoine DeRay Davis, has appeared in several feature films including “Barbershop,” “Barbershop 2: Back in Business,” “Johnson Family Vacation” and “Jumping the Broom.” His small screen credits include “21 Jump Street,” “The Boondocks” and “My Wife and Kids.”  

A native of the die-hard sports town of Chicago, Davis shares Philly’s competitive spirit, even when it comes to comedy.

“I come from sports. I played basketball and everything my whole life so I treat comedy like a sport now,” he said. “You gotta go out there and perform to the best of your ability. You’ve to not only entertain the crowd, but you have to entertain yourself. So you stay relevant, so you stay up on it, you stay on your toes — you gotta be quick on your feet, especially in Philly! Philly’s like New York and Chicago. They know comedy. They want to hear it. They want you to come wit’ it! I gotta go out there and make them forget they’re gettin’ bit by mosquitoes! That’s how funny I gotta be!”

Currently, Davis is addressing family issues in his routines, particularly his young daughter. “She’s eleven now, so that’s turned into a really funny situation,” he said. “It used to be she was a real Daddy’s Girl. Now I can’t even get her on the phone! It’s weird to have her click over and not click back on the phone when she puts me on hold.”

As Davis anticipates sharing the stage with his “friends” Aries Spears, Turae and Dominque, he describes his standup as “a freestyle comedy” saying, “It’s very exclusive to whatever city I’m in. I don’t have no same set that I do all the time, and it’s a good time. My comedy is a get together. I want to have fun. I want you guys to feel like you’re watching your cousin act a fool onstage!”

The Dell Music Center is located at 33rd Street and Ridge Avenue. For tickets and information call the Dell box office at (215) 685-9560 or visit


Contact entertainment Reporter Kimberly C. Roberts at (215) 893-5753 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .