State Theatre New Jersey


The King of Comedy returns to The State

Jay Leno is returning to State Theatre New Jersey on Sunday, June 4, 2017! For more than 20 years, the comedian hosted The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, and he currently stars in his CNBC show Jay Leno’s Garage. With such a layered career in both comedy and late-night television, Leno has easily become one of the greatest comics of our time.

From his childhood, Leno knew that he was going to have to work harder than his peers to achieve his goals. Leno shares, "My mother always said to me, since I was dyslexic, 'You're going to have to work twice as hard as the other kids to get the same thing.' I said, 'OK. That seems fair.' And I did work twice as hard to get the same thing.”  During his beginnings as a professional comedian, Leno would spend hours waiting on lines to audition at comedy clubs. While many auditioners became fed up with the wait and left their places in line, Leno stood his ground determined to get his chance. Throughout the late 70s, Leno landed roles in various films and television shows. However, he truly shined during his comedic appearances on The Tonight Show hosted by Johnny Carson. Leno made his first appearance on the show in 1977, subsequently appearing in bits and as an occasional guest host.

Leno eventually became Carson’s successor in 1992 with the show being renamed The Tonight Show with Jay Leno. He became known for his hilarious opening monologues that could span anywhere from ten to fifteen minutes as he commented on the day’s events. Between 1993 and 2005, the show was nominated ten times for an Emmy Award® in the Outstanding Variety, Music or Comedy Series, winning in 1995. After a brief hiatus as host in 2009, Leno returned to the show in 2010 where he carried out his tenure until 2014 when he stepped down as the host of The Tonight Show. The same year, Leno was inducted into the Television Hall of Fame.

When asked if he would ever return to late-night television, Leno responded "No, I did it 22 years, and at some point, you say to yourself, 'I shouldn't have to know all of Jay Z's music.' A 66-year-old guy critiquing a hip-hop song—it's a little silly.”  However, Leno continued to make appearances on other late-night talk shows such as Late Night with Seth Meyers and The Late Night Show with James Corden. Leno, a major car collector, landed a web series called Jay Leno’s Garage which eventually became a prime time series on CNBC in 2015. Leno continues to tour the country performing stand-up comedy sharing, “I love doing the stand-up. If I walk into a room, and there's a group of magazines and a group of people, I go to the group of people and just start talking.”

This will be a night full of laughs that you will not want to miss! Check out our exclusive interview with Jay Leno's opener singer-songwriter Vance Gilbert and come see Jay Leno at State Theatre New Jersey on Sunday, June 4, 2017 at 7:30pm!

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