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Gilbert Gottfried hosts star-studded school fundraiser

The comedian and his friends raise money for Manhattan's P.S. 11.

Gilbert Gottfried arrives at the Saturday Night Live 40th anniversary red carpet.<Getty Images

By fundraiser standards, a stand-up show featuring stars that included John Oliver, Colin Quinn and Jim Gaffigan would be impressive. Last Tuesday, all of those big names and others gathered at the Gotham Comedy Club to raise money for “Comedy for a Cause” an annual fundraiser for PS 11 in Chelsea.

The fundraiser is the brainchild of Dara Gottfried and her husband, comedian and long-time Gilbert Gottfried. Both of the Gottfrieds’ two children attend PS 11. Funds from the comedy show and accompanying online auction will go to the elementary school’s various programs.

We sat down with Gilbert Gottfried just before he took the stage.

How did you get all these guys to come together for this show?

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“My wife [Dara] is kind of a bulldozer at these events and she starts calling people and then they show up.” And does everyone here live in the neighborhood? “They live all over — I don’t think any of them have been to my house. They don’t like me.”

Well, you got them to come on a cold evening.

“Oh yeah, I wish they’d come out and I could stay at home.”

Were you artistic as a kid?

“I liked to draw, I liked to imitate people that I saw on TV and I was absolutely the worst student that you could find.”

But for students like that it’s important to have other activities so that they have an outlet.

“Oh absolutely. I do the voice for this show called “Cyberchase” on PBSKids and it’s educational. Half the time I have no idea what I’m saying but parents are like, ‘This is great.’”

Do kids recognize your voice because of “Cyberchase”?

Some do, and some have to be told. And every now and then you find a 5-year-old who knows me from ‘The Aristocrats’ and that’s a problem.”

Follow Lakshmi Gandhi on Twitter at @LakshmiGandhi.

 
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