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Kathleen Madigan

While toiling as a print journalist during the late ’80s, Madigan started doing open mic nights at local comedy clubs and found her calling. “That’s what I was meant to do,” she said. Since then, she’s developed into a sharp, unsparing comic who’s proudly “performed on nearly every stand-up television show ever made” and recorded specials for Showtime, HBO, Comedy Central and Netflix. Unsurprisingly, there’s nothing she enjoys more than her work. Madigan, who’ll bring her “Bothering Jesus Tour” to the Empire on Friday, isn’t one of those humorists using comedy as a stepping stone to a sitcom vehicle. What Madigan wants is to make audiences laugh. “That’s all I ever wanted to do,” she said. “I can’t believe this is my job ... It’s the greatest job in the world.”

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