It’s difficult to know why a person is destined to be a comedian but Mark can point to one incident:
“I was watching the movie Scarface at home when my mom came to visit and this was her reaction to the ending of that movie: Pacino is blowing guys away with a machine gun, bodies are going down, he gets shot from behind and falls into an indoor swimming pool, splashing blood as the camera pulls back to reveal the carnage and my mom says ’That’s a lovely house.’”
Mark Pitta is a national headliner coming from the fervent San Francisco comedy scene of the 1980s.
“It was the best time to want to be a comedian,” says Mark. “The clubs created a cooperative nurturing environment almost like a baseball farm system. It got us all ready for Los Angeles when it was time to jump into that scene.”
FIRST JOKE: “Here’s something you’ll never hear at a Catholic school:
‘What are you wearing tomorrow?”
Mark’s career flourished in LA, first, fulfilling his dream of appearing on The Tonight Show with Johnny Carson then subsequent appearances with Jay Leno. Mark landed a job as host of Totally Hidden Video for the FOX network, playing different characters in hidden camera situations and then hosting Friday Night Videos for NBC. Mark has made guest appearances on Mad About You and Third Rock From the Sun. For Comedy Central Mark has appeared on Premium Blend, The A-List, Dr. Katz, and Make Me Laugh.
Mark wrote and starred in his own sitcom for NBC but the pilot wasn’t chosen for the fall season. Head of NBC, Warren Littlefield picked a show called “Union Square” instead. It lasted three episodes. Mark predicts that his show would have lasted at least four.
When the word came down that the project wasn’t a go Mark magically received a call from the top rated morning show in the San Francisco Bay Area to be the roving entertainment reporter/host. For five years Mark brought his unique comic expertise to the man on street format and enjoyed the original approach to interviewing newsmakers, movie stars and everyday folk. In 1997 Mark achieved the comedy version of the hat trick when, during a show, he made a women (name withheld) laugh so hard she wet her pants, cried, and liquid came out of her nose. There is no higher honor.
A favorite on the comedy club; college; and corporate circuit, Mark has also opened for Chris Issak, Celene Dion, Vanessa Williams, Paul Anka, Kenny Rogers, Olivia Newton John, Smokey Robinson, Big Bad Voodoo Daddy, and Rick Springfield. The prestigious ELAN AWARDS has chosen Mark as Master of Ceremonies five times, and Anthony Robbins has employed Mark to liven up his financial seminars.
Every Tuesday in Mill Valley, California, Mark runs a comedy showcase at the 142 Throckmorton Theatre new comics a chance to develop. Veterans like Dana Carvey, Robin Williams, and Richard Lewis have also stopped by.