He slowly rose from beneath the stage amid billowing red smoke, then glided toward the audience aboard a conveyor belt. Next, tall jets of flame shot toward the rafters.
Hart said he was inspired to add pyro to his show after seeing a concert by rap stars Jay-Z and
"I'm setting this stage on fire -- literally!" he boasted.
Next, the crowd of 5,500 was treated to stream-of-consciousness tales about the risks of dishonesty in relationships. It's a subject about which the recently divorced Hart seems to feel passionately. "Lying will ruin your life, people!" he said. "Lying ruined my marriage. That's a lie. I cheated."
Hart's skyrocketing popularity, both in
“It’s something we can relate to day to day,” said 38-year-old Virginia Beach resident
Baxter was at the show with Navy friends. He just recently returned from a deployment and was looking forward to unwinding with a few laughs at
"This is a great way to celebrate being back, to go hear some great humor from a great comic."
Baxter's friend Fred Martin said there's no magic formula that's fueling Hart's popularity. "I can relate to him. I think everybody here can relate to him."
One Hampton fan said he believes Hart's growing popularity is simply a factor of the comic's drive and persistence. "He keeps it fresh," said Armand Harper, 27, of Hampton. Harper saw Hart perform last year at
Jason Ramsey, 35, of
Ramsey was somewhat surprised that Hart had sold out so many shows in Hampton. "I didn't realize he was this popular," he said. "But I'm pleasantly surprised. I'm definitely not alone."