Ed Asner, the lovable grump from the iconic TV shows "Mary Tyler Moore Show" and "Lou Grant," comes to Detroit on Saturday for a one-night-only performance of "A Man and His Prostate" at The Players in Detroit.

The one-man play was written by MTM Enterprises veteran Ed Weinberger, who suffered an attack of prostatitis while vacationing in Florence, Italy -- and faced the challenge of communicating with doctors and nurses, almost none of whom spoke good English. 

So what's this play about?

My producer and writer, Ed Weinberger, was on a tour of Italy with his wife. They were in Florence when he was struck with -- What am I trying to say? -- trouble in his key part. 

What attracted you to the part?

It's funny as hell, and does a good job of sounding cautionary notes for every man. 

Which raises the question -- how's your prostate?

I have no problems, but the number of men who die from prostate cancer is shocking. But so far I've been lucky. I'm just a fat tub. That's my problem. 

How old are you?

I'm 88. 

At 88, touring a one-man show seems very ambitious. 

I'm also touring with "God Help Us," that deals with a couple who were an item in the past, but have drifted apart and occupy different political extremes. I bring them together as God and prompt and coach and tickle and judge them.

You get around. 

Yeah. I kiss a lot of ass.

What's it like playing the divinity?

I was destined to play God. 

Have you done other one-man shows?

Yes, I toured with "FDR" for about four years. 

Actors playing long-running TV characters sometimes get imprisoned in that role. Did that happen with you and Lou Grant?

No. Even while doing the "Mary Tyler Moore Show," I ended up doing "Rich Man, Poor Man," which was a big crossover. And the following year I appeared in "Roots." But it's funny -- generally people don't rush to put me in high drama. 

Did you always want to be an actor?

No. I was an editor on my high school newspaper. My beloved teacher once asked, "You thinking of journalism as a career?" I said yes. But he said, "I wouldn't. You can't make a living." So I went into acting. 

You recently published "The Grouchy Historian: An Old-Time Lefty Defends Our Constitution Against Right-Wing Hypocrites and Nutjobs." Are you worried about the country? 

Oh yeah - very. It's like the country's out to lunch.

(313) 222-6021


'A Man and His Prostate' with Ed Asner 

8 p.m., Saturday

The Players, 3321 E. Jefferson, Detroit

$60 general admission; $75 VIP Package, includes afterglow and meet-and-greet with Ed Asner

To buy tickets go to: 

(313) 259-3385







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