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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 providing four minutes per comic, with “15 people chosen randomly through e-mail, and five walk-ins; and a guaranteed spot to anyone who performs in character as a famous explorer” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Comedic Exploration Club of Long Island City, West
[MEGA-TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): A special final performance of Gramp’s, which at its height with Kate McKinnon (now a cast member of Saturday Night Live) was not only the finest of UCBT’s Maude teams but one of the best sketch comedy groups in the country. Kate’s busy rehearsing tonight for SNL (which returns this Saturday 9/15), but Gramp’s writers and 20 superb performers will help blow the roof off at UCB Chelsea for Gramp’s: The Finale
7:00 pm-12:30 am ($7 for the entire evening): Magnet house troupes Indigo, Egg White, Plaid, Brick, Featherweight, Chet Watkins, Rose Petal, and Horses performing improv, followed by a free audience interactive show with Egg White at 11:30 pm: The Magnet’s Megawatt
[FREE] 7:00 pm to midnight: Four free hours of improvisation at The PIT’s Super Free Wednesday
7:00 pm ($8): “Desperation, dictatorship, and punches to the testicles are just some of the themes in the second run of the sketch show written by Gabe Capone (National Scandal) and Ryan Darden (Nuns on the Run). It’s silly, cerebral, and unapologetically dark” at The PIT downstairs lounge: Gabe and Ryan’s Facebook Timeline
[MEGA-TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Scott Adsit (cast member of 30 Rock, and co-writer/director/producer & cast member of Adult Swim’s awesome & Emmy-winning Moral Orel) teaming up with fellow 30 Rock actor John Lutz (who previously spent six years as a staff writer for Saturday Night Live) to form a super-smart and hilarious star improv duo that’s become one of the very best attractions at UCB Chelsea and should not be missed: John & Scott
[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: A live recording of host Sean Patton (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; killer sets on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central, VH1; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash) and nearly a dozen NYC stand-ups—including Reid Faylor, Lee Camp, Dave Waite, and Danny Lobell—at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Stand-Up Records
8:00 pm (no cover, 1-item min.): Livia Scott (magical comedic chameleon; Conan O’Brien, Livia’s Castle of Enchantment), Josh Gondelman (G4′s Attack of the Show), Aalap Patel, Calvin S. Cato, and Nathan Rand performing at McSwiggan’s (393 Second Avenue off 23rd Street) hosted by Selena Coppock, Dan Cartwright, and/or Emily Epstein: Connotation
[FREE] 8:30 pm: Typically terrific NYC comics (not announced) performing at this free weekly comedy show at Brooklyn’s Cameo (behind Lovin’ Cup) typically hosted by Jenny Slate, Gabe Liedman, and/or Max Silvestri: Big Terrific
9:00 pm ($5 if you say “Double Dutch Bus,” otherwise $8): Stand-up Brendan McLaughlin, music from Jen Kwok, character comedy from Adam Haway, and sketch from troupes The Chris & Paul Show, The Release, and Sketch Tiger performing at Under St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue) hosted by Annie Solstad Laferriere: September Sketch Block
[FREE] 9:00 pm: Jared Logan (rising star; Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, host of ComedyJuice), Calise Hawkins (Jimmy Fallon, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, writer for Playboy.com), Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, MTV, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Dive comedy and Stripped Stories), Mike Cannon (MTV), and Dan Hirshon performing stand-up at this free weekly comedy show at Lucky Jack’s Bar (129 Orchard Street) produced by Kyle Fincham, Lance Weiss, and Brendon Fitzgibbons: Gandhi, Is That You?
9:00 pm ($5): Mindy Raf (brilliant comedic singer/songwriter; VH1, College Humor, YA novelist; often performs as alter ego Leibya Rogers), Kara Klenk (host of If You Build It), and Thomas Dale performing at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Leah Bonnema & Jessimae Peluso: The K-Hole Comedy Show
[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Abbi Jacobson & Ilana Glazer created Broad City as a Web series, which was then picked up for development as a TV series for FX…and is also a monthly stage show at UCB Chelsea. Tonight’s theme is Oprah for this “delicately crafted hour of fun:” Broad City Live
[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): The instructors of UCB’s classes include some of the finest improvisors in the country. In this new weekly show a bunch of them get on stage at UCB East, along with hosts Betsy Stover and Ari Voukydis: Hot for Teacher: The UCB Faculty Show
[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups do sets “and then have a discussion about what’s going on in the world and the mysteries of life” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City, hosted by Chris Laker: The Show
[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: The wonderful Sasheer Zamata (Doppelganger) hosts 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. (Tonight’s scheduled guests include Jena Friedman, Casey Jost, and Emmy Blotnick; for the complete list, please click here.) Come support the experimentation, and periodic magical surprises, that this uniquely organic rollercoaster of a weekly show at UCB Chelsea 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
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