If there is one person working in cabaret right now who could almost instantly jump to star status, it's Mark McCombs. A wildly talented writer-performer who creates hilarious Southern trash characters and infuses them with rich, quirky personalities, McCombs is just a phone call away from landing a Saturday Night Live job or its equivalent.

He is a plum comic performer waiting to be picked by the first TV producer lucky enough to stumble across his fall-off-your-chair act, which recently concluded at Don't Tell Mama. (Stranger things have happened!) From a sly, middle-aged busybody talking gossip on the phone to an adorable little boy on a sugar high who accidentally says the darkest, darnedest things, McCombs' assemblage of wounded, whacked-out characters borders on creative genius.

He's not telling jokes, he's bringing to life seriously funny character pieces that oftentimes are as touching as they are outlandishly hysterical. If he tied each of these pieces ever so slightly closer together, the texture of the entire show would deepen tenfold. If there is any justice in show business, McCombs will go very, very far.

Barbara & Scott Siegel