An Evening with David Sedaris

David Sedaris came to Vienna for a reading/signing.
Seen on: 3.3.2016

If you’ve been keeping up with this blog (despite the irregular updates at the moment), you may have noticed that I have read my fair share of Sedaris recently. I had read woefully little of his writing, despite him being a favorite writer of half my family (basically the half that reads). So when it was announced that he was coming to Vienna, I thought that it would be the ideal opportunity to brush up on my Sedaris reading before we got together to see him live.

Sedaris is obviously a performer, which is an important quality when it comes to reading aloud. His stories – especially the autobigraphical ones – are funny when you read them for yourself, but hearing and watching him read his stories elevated them to a whole new level.


Sedaris doesn’t limit himself to reading. He not only read us an incredibly amusing story about finally having a guest room and loving it, but he also told us about his experiences in Vienna so far and used pretty much all the German at his disposal to do so. Living in the UK at the moment, he seemed particularly impressed by how little littering there is in Vienna and then proceeded to tell us that he recently got a special award because his main hobby is walking around the landscape close to their house and collecting all the trash the people passing through have simply thrown on the street. This obsession goes hand in hand with his obsession with the fitbit and counting his steps.

Sedaris also read a bit from his next project which is basically an edited version of his diary in which he collects funny and otherwise special moments he experienced, boiling them down to short jokes and glimpses into his life. In those excerpts he doesn’t only make his own jokes but also collects jokes he heard from other sources, be they friends or TV or whatever – which will probably give new fire to the discussion that surrounds his writing’s veracity or accuracy.

Whether he does non-fiction or fiction or simply something on the line between the two, Sedaris also straddles the line between reading and stand-up and is simply funny. I had an extremely entertaining evening and should he come to Vienna again, I wouldn’t mind watching again.

Summarizing: Wonderfully entertaining.

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