Anthony Jeselnik at the Varsity

Updated 5/1/2013

Friday: Pitch-black comic is at Varsity. Plus: "I Love to Eat."

Anthony Jeselnik
Natalie Brasington

FRIDAY

Anthony Jeselnik

Egotistical ass. A guru of misdirection . Entertaining jerk. All are fitting descriptors for Jeselnik, the master of comedy’s border with bad taste. His cockiness (he addresses most audiences as “you kids”) is only surpassed by his skill — injecting amusement into tragic and taboo subjects, all with trademark twist punchlines. Some might take the star of Comedy Central’s “The Jeselnik Offensive” as too mean-spirited, but comedy has always been about the edge, so maybe it’s best to take this ski-jump coiffed comic’s riffs with that in mind. (7:30 & 10:30 p.m. Fri. $25. Varsity Theater, 1308 SE. 4th St., Mpls. 612-604-0222 or www.varsitytheater.org.) SPENCER DOAR 

OPENING

‘I Love to Eat’

Garry Geiken portrays the legendary James Beard, who was a TV chef starting in 1946, years before Tom Colicchio and Bobby Flay were even born. Playwright James Still imagines a 1984 evening with Beard, in which he reminisces about his long career as a chef and writer. Beard was a wild personality who pioneered American understanding of gourmet cooking. The awards named for him are among the industry’s most prestigious. Still’s “The Velvet Rut” and “Iron Kisses” were produced by Illusion, and his “A Village Fable” had its full-length debut at Children’s Theatre. Michael Robins directs. (Previews 8 p.m. Thu. Opens 8 p.m. Fri.-Sat., Mon. $5-$28. Ends May 18. Illusion Theater, 528 Hennepin Av. S., Mpls. 612-339-4944 or www.illusiontheater.org.) Graydon Royce