Break out your sweater and have a pudding pop, Bill Cosby is coming to the Bayou City. Dr. William H. Cosby Jr. is, of course, one of the biggest names in comedy. Today most people remember him as the much put-upon, sweater-wearing dad on The Cosby Show, his 1980s sitcom, which dominated the airwaves for almost a decade. Or they know him as the face of Jell-O pudding commercials. But he had a remarkable career before that. He appeared in a breakthrough role in the NBC series I Spy in the mid- 1960s (and was the first black man to appear on a television drama), winning three Emmys for his performance. After I Spy, Cosby returned to stand-up. His comedy albums during that time earned him eight gold and five platinum rec-ords, along with five Grammy Awards. Lately, Cosby has become well known for his provocative books and commentary on social issues including race.
Today Cosby leaves the TV characters and rhetoric behind and returns to his special version of stand-up when he appears with the Houston Symphony. For the first half of the show, the orchestra will perform light pieces such as selections from West Side Story. For the second half of the show, the Cos will bring his signature brand of storytelling to the stage. 8 p.m. Jones Hall, 615 Louisiana. For information, call 713-224-7575 or visit www.houston-symphony.org. $45 to $110.