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Los Angeles Times Ministry of Gossip reports on the David Lynch Foundation’s Night of Comedy honoring George Shapiro

July 4, 2012

For Russell Brand, meditation puts life in perspective

Jay Leno, left, Jerry Seinfeld, George Shapiro, Russell Brand and David Lynch arrive at the David Lynch Foundation’s Night of Comedy honoring George Shapiro at the Beverly Wilshire hotel Saturday. (John Shearer / Invision / June 30, 2012)

By Danielle Paquette

July 2, 2012, 1:28 p.m.

Russell Brand, how do you stay so happy-go-lucky?

“I meditate often,” he told the Ministry of Gossip on Saturday. “It connects you to a source of energy that’s more powerful than the material world in which we primarily dwell. It helps you relax and unwind.”

That’s something clearly needed by the comic and actor, who has been percolating on a publicity tour for “Rock of Ages,” shooting his FX comedy show “Brand X” and navigating a media firestorm linked to his divorce from Katy Perry, whose new documentary “Part of Me” includes personal footage from their marriage.

Hardly relaxing stuff. On the other hand …

“If you spend a lot of time meditating, you start to think of the stuff that is happening in your actual life as being secondary. It doesn’t feel so important,” he said before emceeing a David Lynch Foundation fundraiser in honor of manager George Shapiro’s lengthy career and love of Transcendental Meditation.

From the Beverly Wilshire auditorium stage later that night, Brand entertained high profile guests including Shapiro client Seinfeld, Jay Leno, Garry Shandling and Sarah Silverman (all of whom also performed), plus Shapiro himself, who received the Lifetime of Bliss Award from Lynch.

Proceeds from the fundraiser went to “meditation training” scholarships for impoverished kids and veterans. Brand said the practice saved him from a agonizing, drug-riddled decline — though onstage he jokingly referred to Lynch’s organization as a “cult.”

Celebrities, meditation-championing, tickets starting at $1,000 a seat — a Beverly Hills evening, indeed.

See Chicago Tribune: A standup hero: Comedians fete Shapiro | Variety: A standup hero: Comedians fete Shaprio (with photos) | Haute Living: The Kings (and Queens) of Comedy Honor George Shapiro (with photos) | Blue Carpet Interviews before the David Lynch Foundation Fundraiser Honoring George Shapiro | See Highlights of David Lynch Foundation honoring legendary manager and producer George Shapiro at first annual Night of Comedy.

Watch this great interview of George Shapiro posted on Emmy TV Legends in the Archive of American Television. He tells some great stories about comics including Andy Kaufman and Jerry Seinfeld.

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