NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 8/31/11

August 31, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

For comprehensive coverage of the FringeNYC 2011 Encore Series, please click here.

Tanya O'Debra

Tanya O'Debra and her troupe perform sketch at "The Best of Beaches 2"

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[FREE] 6:00 pm to midnight: Six free hours of improvisation at The PIT’s Super Free Wednesday

8:00 pm ($5): Two of the finest comedic actors in NYC, Amy Heidt and Jeff Hiller, perform sketches about love and murder that aren’t nearly as good as they are (don’t know how that happened, as Amy is also a brilliant writer); but come for the pleasure of seeing these two on stage: The Last Resort ; and in the other half of this double-bill, the superb Ryan Karels (Conan O’Brien, Krompf) performs a sketch show I haven’t yet seen titled Radio Rogue

8:00 pm, 9:00 pm, and 10:00 pm ($5): Magnet house troupes performing improv, followed by a free show at 11:30 pm: The Magnet’s Megawatt

[FREE] 8:30 pm: Open mic stand-up (with sign-up starting at 8:00) at Brooklyn’s Belleville (330 5th Street) hosted by Josh Guarino: The Belleville Mic

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): A sketch group that includes beloved East Village performer Tanya O’Debra does its funniest bits from the past year at Under St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue): The Best of Beaches 2

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): One of the finest comedic storytelling shows in the country, in which brilliant writer/performers—who tonight are Adam Wade, Anthony Atamanuik, Jawnee Conroy, Christian Capozoli, and wonderful host David Martin—tell tales that are brutally honest and utterly hilarious, with tonight’s theme ScarsThe Nights of Our Lives

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Short videos from NYC comics (lineup not announced) at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City with host Nick Turner: Free Comedy

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: As many as a dozen guests packed into 75 minutes performing stand-up, improv, sketch, and occasionally acts that defy categorization. The level of talent can vary wildly, but for some (like me), that’s part of the laid-back fun; and this is often one of the most amazing comedy shows in town. Come support the experimentation, and periodic magical surprises, that this uniquely organic rollercoaster of a show makes possible—and don’t forget to toss $1 in the bucket on your way out: School Night

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up running until 1:00 am, with time divided evenly between performers (up to five minutes), at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City with host Rob Stern: Bucket ‘O Buckets

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Tuesday 8/30/11

August 30, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

For comprehensive coverage of the FringeNYC 2011 Encore Series, please click here.

Anthony Jeselnik and Andy Blitz

Comedy geniuses Anthony Jeselnik (Joe Mande Presents at Carolines) and Andy Blitz (Tell Your Friends)

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

7:00 pm ($5): Comedy veterans and Magnet students team up to perform musical improv at The Program

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Open mic for comedy of all types (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at Queens LIC’sThe Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Robert Dean: The Dean’s List

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($5.50 & 2-drink min.) Anthony Jeselnik (one of my all-time favorite stand-ups; former writer/performer for Jimmy FallonConan O’Brien, HBO, Comedy Central Presents; comedy CD Shakespeare), Sean Patton (red-hot rising star; killer set on Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central, VH1; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Louis Katz (HBO, Comedy Central), and more performing at the Carolines Comedy Club with host Joe Mande: Joe Mande Presents at Carolines

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Andy Blitz (comedy genius best known for being an Emmy-nominated and long-time writer/performer for Late Night with Conan O’Brien; has also written for Comedy Central’s Important Things, MTV’s Human Giant, etc.; a thoroughly unique stand-up whose sets—ranging from talking peanut butter to jet-flying cats—tend to be unforgettable), Vanessa Bayer (cast member of Saturday Night Live), Jane Borden (treasured Comedy Editor of Time Out New York, author of I Totally Meant to Do That), Joe Garden (Features Editor of The Onion), Wayne Federman (former head monologue writer for Jimmy FallonJay Leno, Comedy Central Presents), Phoebe Robinson (host of Case of the Mondays Comedy), and Eric Patrick performing at the Lolita Bar at Liam McEneaney’s Tell Your Friends

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Comics creators joining super-hosts Alex Zalben, Justin Tyler, and Pete LePage in a lively & hilarious discussion about four-color pop culture, at The PIT’s downstairs lounge: Comic Book Club

8:00 pm to Midnight ($5): Four full hours of improv for only five bucks—tonight featuring UCBT house troupes Dance Break, Mr. Crime, Sandino, American Cousin, and Grandma’s Ashes—and at 11:00 pm advanced UCBT students making up movies—all at Harold Night

8:00 pm ($5): “What really goes on inside the mind of an 11-year-old girl from Long Island who’s obsessed with sleepaway camp, Madonna, and everything that her sexually promiscuous older sister does?” A one-woman show by Ali Bernstein: J.A.P.

8:30 pm ($5): In this double-bill, each of two of The Magnet’s singing improv troupes will make up a musical on the spot based on an audience suggestion: Rebound and BEEES!

9:30 pm ($5): Seth Herzog (staff comic for Jimmy Fallon; Comedy Central, CBS, VH1, movie star; host of Sweet), Mark Normand (hilarious stand-up; Last Comic Standing; co-host of Hot Soup andWe’re All Friends Here), and Andy Haynes performing at the PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Joe DeRosa (HBO’s Down and DirtyComedy Central Presents) and Jared Logan (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central): Righteous Kill

[FREE] 10:15 pm: In this free show, audience members can join in with veteran musical improv talents to make up stories in song on the spot: Musical Magnet Mixer

[FREE] 11:00 pm: A breathtaking 40 comics are given 2 minutes each in this rapid-fire open-mic stand-up show hosted with wit and energy by Jay Welch: Bring It

 For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 8/29/11

August 29, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

For comprehensive coverage of the FringeNYC 2011 Encore Series, please click here.

Jason Sudeikis

SNL's Jason Sudeikis is among the TV, Broadway, and improv stars at tonight's "Gravid Water"...

Anthony Jeselnik

...and Anthony Jeselnik is among the top stand-ups in the country performing tonight at "Whiplash"

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show running about 90 minutes at The Creek in Queens’ Long Island City with host Chris Gaynor: Open Mic Mondays

[FREE] 6:30 pm: Kevin Allison (legendary MTV sketch series The State, HBO, Comedy Central, VH1, host of award-winning storytelling show Risk!) hosts this free open-mic show for storytellers, in which you can put your name in a hat for the chance to tell a five-minute true story…and if it’s a good one, possibly be included in Kevin’s popular podcasts on the Web: Risk! Storyslam

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): Jimmy Fallon writer Casey Jost performs a one-man show in which he plays a myriad of characters revolving around a theme—which for this debut show is Music: Fooling Around with Casey Jost

7:00 pm & 9:00 pm (no cover, 1-item min.): The perfect show for short attention spans—open-mic stand-up with 4 minutes per set and 25 comics crammed into 2 hours—with an early show hosted by Sean Donnelly & Blaine Perry at 7:00 pm, and an entirely different group of stand-ups hosted by Dan Cartwright & Dave Greek at 9:00 pm—at the Luca Lounge (222 Avenue B off 14th Street) for John Morrison’s Motel Luca

[FREE] 7:30 pm: Phoebe Robinson (normally the host, but Phoebe wants to do a set tonight), Dave Greek, Morgan Venticinque, Kevin Barnett, Luke Yonger, Trey Galyon, and Jayson Cross performing stand-up at a free weekly show in the Manchester Pub guest-hosted by Miguel Dalmau (TruTV): Case of the Mondays Comedy

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Film, and Broadway & off-Broadway stars Jonathan Kaplan (Tony nominee for FalsettosDiary of Anne Frank on Broadway) Cristin Milioti (30 RockCoram Boy, Lieutenant of Inishmore on Broadway), Stephen Ruddy (Skype Duet, Chekhov’s Gun), Amy Rutberg (The Divine Sister, Our Leading Lady), and Julie Sharbutt (Shakespeare in the Park: Twelfth Night, Maladies) mixing it up with some of the greatest  improvisors in the world—Scott Adsit (30 Rock, Moral Orel, John & Scott), Tara Copeland (Baby Wants Candy, Mother, Diamond Lion, The Made Up Musical, The Other Guys), Michael Delaney (Conan O’Brien, The Other Guys, The Stepfathers), John Lutz (30 Rock, Saturday Night Live, John & Scott), Michael Patrick O’Brien (Saturday Night Live), and Jason Sudeikis (Saturday Night Live)—as they crash improv into classic theatre scenes at actor/director Stephen Ruddy’s Gravid Water

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($5): World-class storyteller Adam Wade (two-time Moth GrandSlam Storytelling Champion (2006 & 2009) and record-breaking 17-time StorySlam Champion; The New York Times Magazine; host of The Adam Wade Show; for Adam’s award-winning tale of being an NBC page on Conan O’Brien, please click here) hosts a show that’s “like watching the characters of The Wonder Years and Freaks & Geeks all grown up and telling coming-of-age tales of love, lost, regret, and redemption,” with tonight’s guests Megan Gray, Joel Jones, Matt DeCosta, and Brad Steuernagel: Adam Wade’s Whatever Happened to the Nerds?

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): One of UCBT’s finest in-house sketch comedy troupes Fambly(spearheaded by rising star Mamrie Hart, who’s snared over 160,000 visits to date with her latest YouTube viral video), plus in-house troupe Neighbor Boy (which isn’t in the same league, but features such appealing performers as Kate Hess and Tim Dunn), trying out new bits at Maude Night

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Comedic storytellers Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; Manhattan Monologue Slam Champ, host of Sideshow Goshko), Ben Lillie (The Story Collider), and Damian Bellino share tales of the heart at The PIT’s downstairs lounge hosted by Arial Karlin: The Do What’s in Your Heart Show

[FREE] 9:30 pm: NYC stand-ups Pat Dixon, Phoebe Robinson, Charlie Kasov, Nathan Rand, Paul Hooper, Laura Prangley, Josh Carter, and Zach McGovern performing at Pat O’Shea’s free biweekly Brooklyn showcase at Freddy’s Backroom (627 5th Avenue): Ed Sullivan on Acid

10:00 pm ($5): Improv is dominated by guys, so this is a rare treat—a dozen female improvisors “for an evening of comedy that will delight men, women, babies, and kittens,” hosted by Megan Gray: We Might Just Kiss

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest stand-ups in the world—who tonight include Anthony Jeselnik (one of my all-time favorite stand-ups; former writer/performer for Jimmy Fallon;Conan O’Brien, HBO, Comedy Central Presents; debut comedy CD Shakespeare), Kumail Nanjiani (David LettermanSaturday Night Live, The Colbert ReportJimmy Kimmel, writer/performer for Comedy Central’s Michael & Michael Have Issues; winner of the 2009 ECNY Awards for Best Male Stand-Up), Sean Patton (red-hot rising star; killer set on Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central, VH1; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Rachel Feinstein (finalist on this summer’s Last Comic Standing; Comedy Central; opens for Sarah Silverman on tour), and Zach Sherwin (a.k.a. MC Mr. Napkins)—hosted by the wonderful Leo Allen (HBO, Saturday Night LiveConan O’Brien, Comedy Central) at Whiplash

[FREE] 11:00 pm: If you’re an audience member who loves stand-up, Monday at 11 should beWhiplash! night (see listing above). If you’re a comic who couldn’t get booked on UCBT’s all-star show, though, you can opt to instead practice your skills at this stand-up open-mic hosted by Michelle Wolf and the hilarious Erin Lennox (for a sample of Erin’s dynamite Seriously Sports show, please click here): Fresh

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.


Comedy Choices for Sat. & Sun. 8/27-8/28

August 27, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

For comprehensive coverage of the FringeNYC 2011 Encore Series, please click here.

Hurricane Irene

Hurricane Irene

Recommendations for the best in New York City comedy tonight…are to stay home.

Because of the hurricane heading our way, Mayor Bloomberg is shutting down mass transit starting noon today and running through at least Sunday night.

FringeNYC 2011 has canceled the final two days of its wonderful festival (for details, please click here); and so have virtually all comedy shows.

 Stay home and be safe.

Comedy listings will resume here on Monday.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Friday 8/26/11

August 26, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

For comprehensive coverage of the spectacular FringeNYC 2011 Festival, please click here.

Kate McKinnon and Jeffrey Sweet

Comedy genius Kate McKinnon performs one of the best one-woman shows of the year in "Kate McKinnon on Ice," and comedy historian Jeffrey Sweet makes a rare NYC appearance in his FringeNYC show "You Only Shoot the Ones You Love"

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic show on a lottery system (sign-ups start at 5:30 pm) at The Creekupstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with hosts Mike Recine and Annie Lederman: The Shinebox

7:00 pm ($7): Sketch comedy from two friends who, by a wild coincidence, have the same name: We’re Matt Weir

7:00 pm ($8): Award-winning improv duo Lucas Kavner and Bradford Jordan make stuff up with “a celebrity guest improvisor’ at Swords, while all-gal improvisors Alexis Saarela, Brigid Boyle, Elizabeth Findlay, and Ashley Ward perform as troupe Taco Supreme

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): Sketch comedy genius Kate McKinnon performing her latest one-woman show, which features “Singing! Dancing! Ice Skating! Hoarders! Conjoined Twins! Temple Grandin!” This inventive, dynamic production is among the very best to grace the UCBT stage this year. (And if you don’t want to take my word alone, check out Jane Borden’s Time Out New Yorkreview.) Kate is the most precious of diamonds in our NYC comedy community; come see why in Kate McKinnon on Ice 

…and in the second half of this double-bill, Joanna Bradley performs a one-woman show about how awful people are, directed by the wonderful Becky Drysdale: Everybody’s Dumb and Boring

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($18): Jeffrey Sweet, author of the seminal improv comedy book Something Wonderful Right Away, is gracing FringeNYC this year with his one-man show about Del Close, Nichols & May, Paul Sills, and other legendary comics whose work led to such comedy institutions as NYC’s Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, The Pit, and The Magnet. (For my full review, please click here.) If you have any interest in improv comedy history, this is a show not to be missed. There are only two performances left at The Studio at Cherry Lane (38 Commerce Street, near the #1 subway’s Christopher Street stop), including tonight at 8:00 pm, of You Only Shoot the Ones You Love

8:00 pm ($10): An improv troupe making up a musical on the spot after a friendly greeting: Hello

[$] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($35 & 2-drink min.): One of the cast members of the seminal In Living Colorheadlining tonight through Sunday at Carolines: Tommy Davidson

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Adam Lowitt, Amber Nelson, Sean Donnelly, Danny Solomon, and Joe Zimmerman performing at O’Hanlon’s (14th Street off 1st Avenue) hosted by Mark Normand: Hot Soup

[FREE] 8:00 pm: An open-mic show that’s first come, first serve (sign-ups start at 7:30 pm), with each comic getting five minutes on stage at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City: Mic and Cheese

[TOP PICK]  8:30 pm ($7): Improv troupe Phooka goes scripted with a sketch show about “tales of the wild and weird people, places, and events this side of Crazytown; true stories of all things that most folks only whisper about—and those who hear wish they didn’t!” in Phooka: Creatures, Myths, and Urban Legends

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): Some of the finest improv in NYC from the comedy genius members of The Stepfathers

9:30 pm ($8): “Ever wonder how you become a writer for an Emmy winning TV show? So does J. D. Durkin. Since no one has told him, here is his one-man show performing all original material to become a writer for The Colbert Report. Durkin channels Colbert live on stage to present political punditry as only The PIT could do it…and only The PIT, since he was escorted off the Comedy Central premises:” Stephen Colbert: Hire Me

10:00 pm ($7): Singing improvisors using an interview with an audience member to craft The Made-Up Musical

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Comedy genius Thomas Middleditch (when he’s not in LA), Nate Lang, Craig Rowin, Matt Fisher, Fran Gillespie Sue Galloway, and other superb improvisors make up scenes about an audience member’s legal dispute at The Law Firm: Law & Disorder

11:00 pm ($5): All-gal improv from Jennifer Bild, Christine DeNoon, Julianne Dunn, and Brandy Mitchell, plus guest stand-up and sketch gal comics: Goldie and the Hawns: Boneless! A Night of Women in Comedy

[TOP PICK] 11:30 pm ($5): A brilliant group of improvisors from Chicago and New York—spearheaded by Improv legend Joe Bill, who’ll participate if he happens to be in NYC tonight—offers lightning-quick dark comedy unlike anything else in NYC. The troupe consists of Jordan Klepper (Klepper & Grey, iO, ), Jodi Lennon (Comedy Central’s Exit 57), Ari Voukydis (UCB instructor, VH!’s Best Week Ever), Doug Stoley (Conan O’Brien, UCB), Rick Andrews (Magnet performer), Mark Grenier (Magnet instructor), Jen Sanders (Magnet performer), and Chet Siegel (Magnet performer)—and if Joe is there too, upgrade this to MEGA-TOP PICK: Lights Out, Shirley!

Midnight ($5): Sketch comedy troupes Hammerkatz NYU and Three Sciences compete for audience laughs and votes, with troupe Sidecar hosting, in Backyard Brawl

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 8/25/11

August 25, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

For comprehensive coverage of the spectacular FringeNYC 2011 Festival, please click here.

Kevin Allison and Gilbert Gottfried

Ace storyteller Kevin Allison (hosting Risk!) and ace stand-up Gilbert Gottfried (headlining at Carolines)

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up with comics drawing names from a bucket, with each chosen one receiving three minutes at The Creek’s upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Corby Haas

[FREE] 6:30 pm: In this free show, audience members (signing in at 6) can join in with veteran improv talents to make up scenes on the spot: Magnet Mixer

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm ($24.50 & 2-drink min.)  A one-of-a-kind comedy star headlining at the Carolines Comedy Club: Gilbert Gottfried

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Sharp sketch troupe Pangea 3000 presents its best sketches in 12 Years of Hard Work; and and in the other half of this double-bill, a mini-play that pleased the college-age audience I saw it with, but that I wish wasn’t written to be so calculating and by-the-numbers (e.g., the ending was dead obvious within the first few minutes)…but is probably worth seeing if only for the genuinely fresh & funny tailor scene: Brad Sacks Gets a Handjob

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Comedy veterans Laura Grey (stellar old-time radio style theatrical podcast Horrorgasm, sketch/improv duo Klepper & Grey), Jodi Lennon (Second City, Annoyance Theatre, iO, Exit 57), and Ari Voukydis (Conan O’Brien, VH1) performing an improvised play in What a Year!

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($7): Some of the Magnet Theatre’s finest improvisors make up theatrical plays on the spot: Playhouse

8:00 pm ($10): “A 17-person middle school talent show created and performed by two people—Jo Firestone and Dylan Marron—who like themselves more now that they’re older. A comedic tribute to the best three years of our lives, and a comedic play for anyone who ever thought it couldn’t get any better than prank calls and slow-dancing:” Ridgefield Middle School Talent Nite

[FREE] 9:00ish pm: Typically terrific NYC stand-ups performing on this weekly show at the Kabin Bar and Lounge hosted by Chesley Calloway and comedy genius Sean Patton: Comedy as a Second Language

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): Top comics and comedic storytellers—who tonight are Matt McCarthy, Dan Kennedy, Danny Lobell, and Dawn Fraser —joining brilliant sketch comic and storyteller Kevin Allison (The State) to share tales on tonight’s theme Uncanny at one of the finest storytelling showsin the country: Risk!

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): “Thin Skin Jonny. They had it all. They were icons, legends, anti-folk superstars. However, tragedy struck and they broke up, citing an alleged statutory charge, gay porn addiction, and Four Loko abuse. Now, two months later, they’re back to do one last show—a benefit! Can they find a way to get along long enough to raise the money needed to re-animate the corpse of Bea Arthur? Maybe, with your help!” Performers include Ari Scott, with direction from Pam Murphy: Thin Skin Jonny: Farewell Reunion Tour

9:30 pm (no cover, 1-item min.): Joe DeRosa, Katina Corrao, Eric Kirchberger, and more performing stand-up at Luca Lounge (222 Avenue B off 14th Street) for Sean Crespo’s & Carol Hartsell’s weekly comedy show Lasers in the Jungle

9:30 pm ($5): Improvisors (not announced) make up one-act plays on the spot at The PIT’s basement lounger for The Scene

[$] 9:30 pm ($35 & 2-drink min.): One of the cast members of the seminal In Living Color headlining tonight through Sunday at Carolines: Tommy Davidson

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Wow; as soon as Tara Copeland moved to LA, musical improv champion Diamond Lion got crushed, scoring 53 votes to challenger Improv Nerds’ 103. Tonight the latter troupe defends its crown by competing with The Brothers Hines for audience laughs and votes at the raucous Cage Match

11:00 pm ($5): Magnet improv troupes Brick and Chet Watkins compete for audience laughs and votes—yes, like UCBT’s Cage Match, but with a game-like challenge component—at Inspirado

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 8/24/11

August 24, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

For comprehensive coverage of the spectacular FringeNYC 2011 Festival, please click here.

John Mulaney and Sara Schaefer

Stellar stand-ups John Mulaney ("Totally J/K") and Sara Schaefer ("Staycation")

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[FREE] 6:00 pm to midnight: Six free hours of improvisation at The PIT’s Super Free Wednesday

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:30 pm: Sara Schaefer (inventive, luminous comic; Emmy-nominated staff writer for Jimmy Fallon; VH1′s Best Week Ever; co-host of hit podcast You Had to Be There), Jared Logan (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, co-host of Righteous Kill), Dan St. Germain (quick-witted rising star; Jimmy Fallon, MTV, VH1; for reenactment of Dan’s breakup, please click here), Joe Pera, and more performing stand-up at the Housingworks Bookstore Cafe hosted by Elihu Dietz: Staycation

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5): John Mulaney (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; writer/performer for Saturday Night LiveConan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, VH1′s Best Week Ever; for John’s great bit on Weekend Update, please click here), Colin Jost (also a writer for Saturday Night Live), and Neal Stasny joining best bud hosts Noah Garfinkel & Joe Mande (author of Look At This F*cking Hipster) at Totally J/K

8:00 pm, 9:00 pm, and 10:00 pm ($5): Magnet house troupes performing improv, followed by a free show at 11:30 pm: The Magnet’s Megawatt

8:00 pm ($5—which includes a free beer!): NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Nick Turner: Monsters

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Mike Still (Death by Roo Roo, Diamond Lion) pulls out all the stops for a dynamic one-man show packed with comedic ideas revolving around a tyrant so evil that he machine-guns the audience (twice!), with direction by fellow Roo Roo star Neil Casey: Dictator For Life;

…and in the other half of this double-bill, Paul Welsh performs a one-man sketch play directed by the wonderful Shannon O’Neill: Men in Paintings

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: As many as a dozen guests packed into 75 minutes performing stand-up, improv, sketch, and occasionally acts that defy categorization. The level of talent can vary wildly, but for some (like me), that’s part of the laid-back fun; and this is often one of the most amazing comedy shows in town. Come support the experimentation, and periodic magical surprises, that this uniquely organic rollercoaster of a show makes possible—and don’t forget to toss $1 in the bucket on your way out: School Night

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up running until 1:00 am, with time divided evenly between performers (up to five minutes), at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City with host Rob Stern: Bucket ‘O Buckets

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Tuesday 8/23/11

August 23, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

For comprehensive coverage of the spectacular FringeNYC 2011 Festival, please click here.

Elaine May and Mike Nichols, Jeffrey Sweet, and Del Close

Jeffrey Sweet tells tales of Nichols & May, Del Close, and other improv comedy legends in his fascinating one-man show "You Only Shoot the Ones You Love"

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[TOP PICK] [$] 5:00 pm ($18): Jeffrey Sweet, author of the seminal improv comedy book Something Wonderful Right Away, is gracing FringeNYC this year with his one-man show about Del Close, Nichols & May, Paul Sills, and other legendary comics whose work led to such comedy institutions as NYC’s Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre, The Pit, and The Magnet. If you have any interest in improv comedy history, this is a show not to be missed. There are only four performances left at The Studio at Cherry Lane (38 Commerce Street, near the #1 subway’s Christopher Street stop), including today at 5:00 pm, of You Only Shoot the Ones You Love

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Open mic for comedy of all types (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at Queens LIC’sThe Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Robert Dean: The Dean’s List

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on most recent Last Comic StandingJay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, hit comedy CDVegan Mind Meld), Justin Shanes (writer for Jimmy Fallon), Tom DiMenna (current FringeNYC one-man show Who Loves You, Baby?), Clayton Fletcher (NYC comedy club host), Josh Carter, and musical guest Killy Dwyer performing at the Lolita Bar at Liam McEneaney’s Tell Your Friends

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Comics fan Jon Gabrus (improvisor on UCBT troupes The Law Firm andOutlook of the Poet, and host of upcoming MTV game show The Substitute) joining super-hosts Alex Zalben, Justin Tyler, and Pete LePage in a lively & hilarious discussion about four-color pop culture, at The PIT’s downstairs lounge: Comic Book Club

8:00 pm to Midnight ($5): Four full hours of improv for only five bucks—tonight featuring UCBT house troupes Very Good Kiss, Dance Break, Grandma’s Ashes, American Cousin, and Airwolf—and at 11:00 pm advanced UCBT students acting weird—all at Harold Night

8:30 pm ($5): In this double-bill, each of two of The Magnet’s singing improv troupes will make up a musical on the spot based on an audience suggestion: Tambourine and Rebound

9:30 pm ($5): Improvised episodes of the never-made third season of Twin Peaks at The PIT’s upstairs theatre: In These Woods

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Star storyteller Tom Shillue (Conan O’Brien, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents, 2011 ECNY Award for Best Storyteller), Wayne Federman, and Adam Conover performing at the PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Joe DeRosa (HBO’s Down and DirtyComedy Central Presents) and Jared Logan (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central): Righteous Kill

[FREE] 10:15 pm: In this free show, audience members can join in with veteran musical improv talents to make up stories in song on the spot: Musical Magnet Mixer

[FREE] 11:00 pm: A breathtaking 40 comics are given 2 minutes each in this rapid-fire open-mic stand-up show hosted with wit and energy by Jay Welch: Bring It

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 8/22/11

August 22, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

For comprehensive coverage of the spectacular FringeNYC 2011 Festival, please click here.

John Mulaney and Vanessa Bayer

Saturday Night Live's John Mulaney and Vanessa Bayer perform tonight at Whiplash

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show running about 90 minutes at The Creek in Queens’ Long Island City with host Chris Gaynor: Open Mic Mondays

7:00 pm & 9:00 pm (no cover, 1-item min.): The perfect show for short attention spans—open-mic stand-up with 4 minutes per set and 25 comics crammed into 2 hours—with an early show hosted by Sean Donnelly & Blaine Perry at 7:00 pm, and an entirely different group of stand-ups hosted by Dan Cartwright & Dave Greek at 9:00 pm—at the Luca Lounge (222 Avenue B off 14th Street) for John Morrison’s Motel Luca

[FREE] 7:30 pm: Mark Normand (hilarious stand-up; Last Comic Standing; co-host of Hot Soup andWe’re All Friends Here), Nore Davis (MTV), Joe Zimmerman, Christian Polcano, Damien Lemon, and Sam Morril performing stand-up at a free weekly show in the Manchester Pub hosted by Phoebe Robinson: Case of the Mondays Comedy

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): UCBT has developed several terrific in-house sketch comedy troupes, but only one of them currently rivals the finest sketch groups in the country: Gramp’s, spearheaded by comedy genius Kate McKinnon. Kate’s group will be trying out all-new bits tonight, but the chances are a bunch of them will be breathtakingly smart, inventive, and hilarious. Also on this double-bill is house troupe Onassis, which isn’t nearly in the same league, but includes such notable performers as Sue Galloway—all at Maude Night

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): “Jonathan Blank and Samara Doucette say what everyone else thinks on dates, but never says… so join them and guest comedians as they divulge all of their wildest and most embarrassing dating stories! This monthly storytelling show contains the truth and nothing but the truth. However, most of the stories are more surreal than if David Lynch directed romantic comedies. Everything from wild hookups to emotional breakups are on the table at This is Awkward

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($5): Wyatt Cenac (star correspondent for The Daily Show), Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on most recent Last Comic StandingJay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, hit comedy CD Vegan Mind Meld), Max Silvestri (VH1, co-host of Big Terrific), and musical guest Thin Skin Jonny performing at the Magnet Theatrefor Adam Lerman’s and Willy Appleman’s Deep Traffic

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at Brooklyn’s Freddy’s Bar (627 Fifth Avenue; take R subway to Prospect Avenue) for this free biweekly show hosted by Brooke Van Poppelen (brilliant stand-up, writer, and storyteller; TLC, blogger for trutV; for stand-up videos about overindulging at 30 and impersonating Morrisey, please click here and here) and Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, MTV, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Stripped Stories): Dive Comedy

9:30 pm ($8): The worlds of “magic, mind-reading, and mutilation” are explored by Matthew Holtzclaw and Prakash Puru: Strange Things

9:30 pm ($5): Two of UCBT’s in-house sketch comedy troupes, Arbuckle (which includes the unique Violet Krumbein) and Stone Cold Fox (which includes performers Fran Gillespie, Nate Smith, John Murray, and Molly Lloyd), trying out new bits at Maude Night

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Open-mic sketch, stand-up, improv, videos, and anything else quick & comedic, at The Magnet with host Leanne Linsky: Casual Sketch

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest stand-ups in the world—who tonight include John Mulaney (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; writer/performer for Saturday Night Live;Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, VH1′s Best Week Ever; for John’s great bit on Weekend Update, please click here), Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on most recent Last Comic StandingJay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, hit comedy CD Vegan Mind Meld), and Vanessa Bayer (cast member on Saturday Night Live)—hosted by the wonderful Leo Allen (HBO, Saturday Night LiveConan O’Brien, Comedy Central) at Whiplash

[FREE] 11:00 pm: If you’re an audience member who loves stand-up, Monday at 11 should beWhiplash! night (see listing above). If you’re a comic who couldn’t get booked on UCBT’s all-star show, though, you can opt to instead practice your skills at this stand-up open-mic hosted by Michelle Wolf and the hilarious Erin Lennox (for a sample of Erin’s dynamite Seriously Sports show, please click here): Fresh

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 8/21/11

August 21, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

For comprehensive coverage of the spectacular FringeNYC 2011 Festival, please click here.

Matt McCarthy

NYC stand-ups including Matt McCarthy...

Ophira Eisenberg

...and Ophira Eisenberg celebrate the Fifth Anniversary of Vince Averill's Beauty Bar Comedy

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 2:00 pm: Vanessa Hollingshead (Comedy Central Presents, Showtime special, VH1), Gina Yashere (Conan O’Brien, regular on Jay Leno, Showtime one-hour special Skinny Bitch), and more performing for a free outdoor show at Mineral Springs in Central ParkLaughter in the Park

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early walk-in open-mic stand-up show (for details, please click here) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Face-Plant Comedy Showcase

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Improv duo The Bedtime Brothers begin by making up scenes based on an audience member’s horrible dating or break-up experience, and end with scenes springboarding off an audience-supplied movie quote; and in between invited stand-ups and sketch comics perform. It all happens at at The Creek in Queens’ Long Island City: Love Sucks! Movies Rock!

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Sketch, improv, and more at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City from comedy troupe Froduce

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10) and 9:30 pm [FREE]: UCBT’s signature improv comedy extravaganza, which typically includes stars in the improv world, and sometimes even TV & movie stars such as Amy Poehler and Horatio Sanz: ASSSCAT 3000

[$] 8:00 pm ($30.50 & 2-drink min.) The co-author of He’s Just Not That Into You and It’s Called A Breakup Because It’s Broken, and a comic who’s performed on HBO, David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, and Jay Leno, headlining one last night at the Carolines Comedy Club: Greg Behrendt

8:00 pm ($5): Auditions for a show at Beaver Area High School: Beaver Drama; and in the other half of this double-bill, sketch troupe The Disappointments perform their best material to date in 100 Years of Ballitude

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Steve Hofstetter (Craig Ferguson), Jon Savoy, Daniel Carroll, Alex Grubard, and Tony Lajeune performing at RG Daniels’ free weekly show at the Three of Cups East Village lounge: Sunday Night Stand-Up

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Matt McCarthy (Comedy Central, AMC, hilarious shorts with Pete Holmes for Front Page Films, national TV ads as Verizon FIOS guy, feature film The Other Guys), Ophira Eisenberg (brilliant storyteller with notable bangs; VH1, Showtime, host of TV pilot of The Liar Show), Greg Johnson, Katina Corrao, Adam Sokol, and Chris Jurek performing at the East Village’s Beauty Bar to celebrate the Fifth Anniversary of Vince Averill’s free weekly show Beauty Bar Comedy

9:30 pm ($5): A monthly screening of new short filmed sketch and comedy produced by members of the Magnet community: Flick Video Showcase

[$] 10:00 pm ($31.25 & 2-drink min.) A provocative comedy star who’s written for Richard Pryor, Red Foxx, and Saturday Night Live, and performed on Chappelle’s Show and David Letterman, headlining through Sunday at Carolines: Paul Mooney

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: Brad Loekle celebrates the Third Year Anniversary of hosting this gay-themed show at Therapy with special guests, giveaways, and sup rises: Electro Shock Therapy Comedy Hour

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 4 minutes per comic, at The PIT’s downstairs lounge hosted by Rob Stern: Vicious Cycle

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Two master improvisors: Ed Herbstman & David Razowsky

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.


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