The Federation Main Event: Jewish comedian Modi to take the JCC stage

By Carl Zebrowski
Modi has done his standup routine on the Big Three TV networks, HBO and Comedy Central and across the United States and the globe. But the comedian the New York Times called “the next Jackie Mason” still likes playing to Jewish audiences. 
“I’m so blessed to be able to go to all these different Jewish communities and connect with my people,” the Israel-born transplant to New York City tells Hakol. He’ll have his chance to connect with the Lehigh Valley community on May 4, when the Jewish Federation brings him here for its 2023 Main Event.
“I always look forward to Federation events,” he says. “They’re fun. I love how they’re a cross section of the community.”
He mentioned a recent show in Florida where Latinos were a majority of the crowd: Cubans, Puerto Ricans, South Americans, Mexicans. “They can be very cliquey on their own,” he says, “but they all came together.”
Most of Modi’s live events are to Jewish audiences. That doesn’t mean everyone in attendance is active in a Jewish Federation, however, which is part of the reason some communities bring him in these days. “Instead of doing a fundraiser,” he explains, “they call it a ‘friend raiser.’”
As for his comedy itself, of course there’s the “Jewish voice.” That’s where the tie to Jackie Mason comes in. “Being compared to Jackie Mason is amazing,” Modi says of the comic who died in 2021 at age 93. “But the Jewish voice has developed since he was performing.”
More recently, a long-time comedy club owner compared Modi to the comedy legends Robin Williams and Richard Pryor. “I was thrilled with that,” he says of the published comments. “He said he never saw an audience laugh that hard.”
Modi believes the comparison makes sense. “It’s high energy,” he explains, like he himself is on stage. “They’re both really smart and think on their feet.”
Tickets for the Night of Comedy of Modi will become available to those who made their pledge to the 2023 Campaign for Jewish Needs starting at Super FunDay on March 5. For more information visit