NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 7/16/14

July 16, 2014

For FringeNYC 2014 pre-fest coverage, please click here.

TV Alert: Jerry Seinfeld is on The Daily Show;
Mark Normand is on Conan O’Brien;
Nathan Fielder (star of Comedy Central’s Nathan For You,
which I just started watching and at its best is super funny)
is on David Letterman; Whoopi Goldberg is on Jimmy Fallon

Michelle Wolf

At UCB Chelsea at 8:00, delightful & hilarious Michelle Wolf debuts one-woman stand-up show She Needs a Cat

Gilbert Gottfried

…and at 11:00 Scott Rogowsky hosts comedy legend Gilbert Gottfried (above), SNL star Sasheer Zamata, and more at Running Late

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:

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [FREE—but For Gal Comics Only!] 6:00 pm-9:00 pm: A three-hour informal gathering of NYC female comics across the board—stand-ups, storytellers, sketch performers, improvisors, musicians, producers, bookers, podcasters, etc.—at The Creek in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Rebecca Trent & Selena Coppock: Lady Comedy Gathering/Networking at The Creek

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central, co-host of Live From Outer Space) hones a 30-minute stand-up set every night this week through Saturday at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Week At the Creek: Erik Bergstrom

[FREE] 7:00 pm to midnight: Five free hours of improvisation at The PIT upstairs theatre: Super Free Wednesday

7:00 pm to 12:30 am ($7 for the entire evening): Five and a half hours of improv from eight groups, including a free improv jam at 11:30, at The Magnet theatre: Magnet Megawatt

7:30 pm ($10): NYC comics are panelists for this game show in which “four smart, funny people are quizzed on odd and obscure bits of trivia that just might save your life (probably not, though)” at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by MIchael FIsher: Pop Quiz Hotshot

7:30 pm ($5): Expanding the UCB longform improv showcased on Harold Night is this weekly show at UCB East which tonight features house groups Rizzo, Witch, and Boom Box: Lloyd Night

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($15; no min.): In this special show, stand-ups take suggestions from the audience and make up an entirely new set on the spot, with tonight’s brave comics Todd Barry (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, FX’s Louie, HBO’s Flight of the Conchords and Bored to Death, Adult Swim, co-star of feature film The Wrestler, star of delightful documentary The Crowd Work Tour), Sasheer Zamata (instant star cast member of Saturday Night Live and genius improvisor for whom this format may be perfect), Joe DeRosa (razor-sharp rising star stand-up; Comedy Central Presents and Comedy Central Half Hour specials, HBO’s Bored to Death and Down and Dirty, FX’s Louie, E!’s Chelsea Lately, comedy CD The Depression Auction), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Jim Florentine (Comedy Central, MTV, Chelsea Lately), Casey Balsham, and Robby Slowik performing at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Stand-Up on the Spot with Todd Barry, Sasheer Zamata, Joe DeRosa, Big Jay Oakerson, and More

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, Joanna Bradley plays a bunch of characters in her one-woman show I Am Very Important People

…and in the other half of this double-bill, the wonderful Michelle Wolf (staff writer for and performer on Seth Meyers; MTV’s Girl Code, IFC) performs a one-woman stand-up show about anything that catches her delightful attention: Michelle Wolf: She Needs a Cat

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm, 9:45 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s comics include Colin Quinn, Gary Gulman, and Kevin Brennan at the 8:00 show, Hannibal Buress, Gregg Rogell, Rachel Feinstein, and Dov Davidoff at the 9:45 show, and Dave Attell, Greer Barnes, BIg Jay Oakerson, and Joe List at the 11:30 show, with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Wednesday

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Nick Thune (Comedy Central Presents, Jay Leno, Jimmy Fallon), Chris Distefano (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV2′s Guy Code), Leah Bonnema (VH1, WeTV’s Cinematherapy, Logo, Opie & Anthony’s Virus Channel), Ben Kronberg (Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, ABC; clash with Roseanne on this season’s Last Comic Standing led to #gofuckyourselfBen), Kate Wolff, Janelle James, and Joe Welkie performing stand-up at the Producer’s Club (358 West 44th Street) produced by Henry Cruz & Keith Fuerstenberg, and hosted tonight by Katherine Williams: Train Wreck Stand-Up

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Rebecca Vigil (powerhouse improv singer The Vigilante), Josh Gondelman (staff writer for HBO’s Last Week With John Oliver), Maria Heinegg, Chrissie Mayr, Nate Craig, Brendan McLaughlin, Chris Griggs, Calvin S. Cato, and Joe Gerics performing stand-up, plus sketch group Werewolf Junction, at the Revision Lounge (219 Avenue B, between 13th & 14th Streets) hosted by Gary Levitt & Matt Schwartzer: I Don’t Get It Stand-Up

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Ashley Brooke Roberts, Courtney Maginnis, Bob Hansen, Irene Hartmann, and Sam Taggart performing in this monthly show that “puts comics inside of a video game that plays itself” and offers prizes at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Steven DeSiena & Stephen Whalen: You and the Screen

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5; no min.): Rachel Feinstein (finalist on Last Comic Standing; Inside Amy Schumer, HBO, The Apprentice, opens for Sarah Silverman on tour), Gary Vider (hilarious deadpan stand-up; for great Conan O’Brien set, please click here; for more jokes, please click here), Abigoliah Schamaun (carny stand-up; co-host of Abigoliah’s Bizarre Bazaar and Dick’s Open Mic), Ben Kissel (host of Last Podcast on the Left), Kenny Garcia, Jon Rudnitsky, and Casey James Salengo performing stand-up or sketch at Brooklyn’s Dean Street (755 Dean Street) hosted by Seena Jon: Dean Street Comedy

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 9:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 260-2445 and mention HyReviews.com, but there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): Matt Koff (writer for The Daily Show), Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), Kendra Cunningham (SNL, Jimmy Fallon, The Tyra Banks Show, Law & Order), and Kevin Bartini (The Daily Show) performing stand-up hosted by Alex Brizel at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Adrienne Iapalucci (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, VH1), Christian Duguay (Executive Producer of MTV’s Ridiculousness), DC Benny (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, ABC’s The Unusuals), Emily Maya Mills (NBC’s Parks and Recreation), Del Harrison (The Wendy Williams Show), Ricky Velez (FX’s Totally Biased), TJ Del Reno, Alyssa Wolff, Brendan McLaughlin, and Alex Fossella performing at this free weekly stand-up show at Lucky Jack’s Pub (129 Orchard Street) produced by Kyle Fincham, Lance Weiss, and Brendon Fitzgibbons: Gandhi, Is That You?

[TOP PICK] 9:15 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

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): Joe Machi (breakout star on current season of NBC’s Last Comic Standing), Ben Lerman (nuanced raunchy comedic singer/songwriter; Logo TV’s NewNowNext, Sirius Radio’s Frank DeCaro Show), and Meghan O’Keefe (VH1) performing stand-up at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Griffin Newman and/or Andrew Tavin: The Awooga Comedy Hour

9:30 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, Carmen Angelica performs a one-woman show using music, animation, and attitude, with direction by the wonderful Becky Drysdale: Who Am I and What the Hell Am I Doing?

…and in the other half of this double-bill, sketch from gal duo Samantha Schecter & Becky Chicoine, with some help from Kelly Harper and director Matt Dennie: Womantown

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($15; no min.): A wonderful opportunity to spend an hour with one of the best stand-ups in the biz, Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody) performing at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander For The Hour

[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] 10:15 pm ($5): Improvisors pair up for one night only, tonight featuring superb improvisors and hosts Dan Hodapp & Natasha Rothwell, plus the brilliant Silvija Ozols (The Stepfathers, Stone Cold Fox) and more performing at the UCB East theatre: Couples Skate

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Great lineup of comedy legend Gilbert Gottfried, Saturday Night LIve star Sasheer Zamata, former SNL cast member John Milhiser, and Daily Show writer Matt Koff performing and/or being interviewed at the UCB Chelsea theatre: Running Late With Scott Rogowsky

Wednesday Open Mics & Jams

5:00 pm ($5): Two-hour open mic for 20 stand-ups performing for 5 minutes each, with sign-up online here, at the Stand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): Stand Up NY Open Mic

[FREE] 5:30 pm: A character-based open-mic happening weekly at UCB East hosted by Sean Hart: Don’t Be Yourself: Character Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open mic stand-up show that provides each performer whose name is pulled from a bucket 5 minutes on stage at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Kaity Neagle & Irene Hartmann: Ragtag Team Open Mic Stand-Up

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open mic stand-up for 15 comics performing for 5 minutes each at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.)—with drinks at half price: Happy Hour Open Mic

6:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, running 2 1/2 hours. Arrive 30 minutes before the show to get on the signup sheet. This is a fine opportunity to perform at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club Open Mic

6:30 pm (no cover, 1-drink min. for comics): Walk-in open mic providing 7 minutes per stand-up at the Phoenix Bar (447 East 13th Street) hosted by Lisa Harmon: Lisa’s Clubhouse

7:00 pm ($2, which includes a free beer or water): Open mic stand-up providing a whopping 10 minutes per comic. Email PhoningItInMic@gmail.com with subject line Phoning Wednesday to sign up; or take a chance at lottery sign-up live between 6:45 and 7:45 at Brit Pack Studios (153 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor) hosted by Lizzie Martinez: Comics Phoning It In

[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

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Your chance to perform on stage with experienced improvisors at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Bernard Maynore & Patrick Cucuta: Improdome

[FREE] 11:15 pm: Your opportunity to perform on the stage of UCB East with improv veterans, hosted by UCBT Harold Night house group Higgins and DJ Cipha Sounds: The Improv Jam

[FREE] 11:30: Sign up at 11:00 pm for the opportunity to make up scenes at The Magnet with veteran improvisors: Magnet Improv Mixer

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$20)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

The Creek and the Cave
(Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all shows free)

This Theater
(154 West 29th Street; new venue that, at its best, features shows comparable to UCB & PIT; free-$12)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
(117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.)

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Comic Strip Live
(1568 Second Avenue, off 81st; Upper East Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Stand Up NY
(236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; Upper West Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Laughing Devil
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club, with MST3K-style movie night on Thursdays; 2-drink min.)

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible BestNewYorkComedy.com. He is literally the only person in NYC providing daily summaries of what’s happening comedy-wise. It must be exhausting keeping that monster of a website alive…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Tuesday 7/15/14

July 15, 2014

For FringeNYC 2014 pre-fest coverage, please click here.

TV Alert: Marc Maron is on Seth Meyers;
Cameron Diaz is on Jimmy Fallon;
Brett Gelman is on Carson Daly (repeated from 4/23);
Drew Carey is on Arsenio Hall (repeated from 2/7)

Lucas Brothers

The Lucas Brothers perform at The Stand and Seth Herzog’s Sweet

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] 7:00 pm-11:00 pm ($7 for the whole evening): In this 4-hour extravaganza, five of The Magnet’s singing improv groups make up a musical on the spot based on an audience suggestion, followed at 10:15 by a free show that lets audience members join in with a musical improv group to make up stories in song: Magnet Musical Megawatt

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central, co-host of Live From Outer Space) hones a 30-minute stand-up set every night this week through Saturday at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Week At the Creek: Erik Bergstrom

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Comics creators join super-hosts Alex Zalben, Justin Tyler, and Pete LePage in a lively & hilarious discussion about four-color pop culture at Fontana’s (105 Eldridge Street), with giveaways of comics and gift certificates (and if you can’t make it, watch in online here): Comic Book Club

7:30 pm-9:15 pm ($5): Long form improv known as The Harold from UCB Chelsea house groups Higgins, Smalls, and Women & Men at this first half of Harold Night

[TOP PICK][$] 7:45 pm, 9:30 pm, and 11:15 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s comics include Gary Gulman, Kevin Brennan, and Robert Kelly at the 7:45 show; Hannibal Buress, Nick Griffin, Gregg Rogell, and Dov Davidoff at the 9:30 show; and Dave Attell, Jeff Ross, Ryan Hamilton, Greer Barnes, and Mike Yard at the 11:15 show, all performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Tuesday

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($7.25 online using discount code NORTHERN; no min.): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), The Lucas Brothers (Jimmy Fallon, 22 Jump Street, FOX’s Lucas Bros Moving Company, Arrested Development), Pete Lee (Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing), Reese Waters, Josh Carter, and Ray DeVito performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander, The Lucas Brothers, Pete Lee, and More

8:00 pm ($10): Sketch comedy from an upbeat group at The PIT upstairs theatre: Totally, Yes

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Charla Lauriston (staff writer for upcoming Tina Fey NBC series; MTV), Alan Starzinski, Francesca Day, Debbie Meisenzahl, Ross Parsons, Jennifer Salzman, and Jeff Kreisler performing stand-up or sketch for this free weekly show at People’s Republic of Brooklyn (247 Smith Street) hosted by Tim Ellis & Mo Fathelbab: Manifesto

[FREE] 8:00 pm: A Harold performed in the dark—”We take an audience suggestion, turn off the lights, and create a unique theatrical experience not possible with your eyes open, mixing old time radio with modern long form improv”—at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: The Bat: Improv in the Dark

8:00 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups Doug Smith, Taylor Ketchum, and Billy Prinsell performing at the UCB East theatre hosted by Bill Stiteler & Tony Zaret: School Drools

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:30 pm (reserve your free spots by clicking here): Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Gary Vider (hilarious deadpan stand-up; for great Conan O’Brien set, please click here; for more jokes, please click here), DC Benny (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, ABC’s The Unusuals), Matt Ruby (MTV; sharp co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here, award-winning blog Sandpaper Suit), Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, MTV), Giulio Gallarotti and more performing stand-up at The Irish Exit (978 Second Avenue, off 52nd Street, in the back room) produced every Tuesday by Mark Normand, Matt Ruby, Gary Vider, and Sachi Ezura: Hot Soup

[TOP PICK]8:30 pm ($10, which includes a free drink): Superb storytellers Jim O’Grady (The New York Times, NPR’s This American Life, WNYC Radio, Moth GrandSlam Champion), Diana Spechler (author of Who By Fire and Skinny), Susan Kent (Tell It), and Lucas Connolly tell true tales about this month’s theme Revolutions at 2A (25 Avenue A off 2nd Street) hosted by Andrew Linderman: Local Stories: Revolutions

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($7): The Lucas Brothers (Jimmy Fallon, FOX’s Lucas Bros Moving Company, 22 Jump Street, Arrested Development), John Milihiser (cast member of Saturday Night Live), Nate Craig (writer for Tosh.0, visiting from LA), Matt Dennie & Josh Sharp (superb sketch duo; GUMP), and more performing stand-up or sketch at The Slipper Room (167 Orchard Street) hosted by Seth Herzog (Jimmy Fallon long-time staff comic, Comedy Central, VH1, host of Nat Geo’s Science of Stupid): Sweet

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Alex Koll (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central), Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, Chelsea Lately, writer for MTV’s Girl Code, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Dive Comedy and Stripped Stories), Justy Dodge (co-host of Married to Comedy podcast and Too Much Information on comicalradio.com; “I was kind of a tomboy growing up. Like, I had Barbies, but only because my Ninja Turtles needed bitches;” for dark bio video, please click here), and Miguel Dalmau performing stand-up at this weekly show at Brooklyn’s The Alligator Lounge (600 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by Robert Dean, Sachi Ezura, and Steve O’Brien: Comedy at Alligator Lounge

9:15 pm-Midnight ($5): Long form improv known as The Harold from UCB Chelsea house groups Greg, Side Piece, and The Enemy at this second half (continued from 7:30 pm) of Harold Night

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Brilliantly innovative comic Anthony Atamanuik (Death by Roo Roo, 30 Rock, Conan O’Brien, The Nights of Our Lives) plays oddball characters in a mix of sketch and improv (with help from producer Andy Rocco and Jesse VandenBergh); plus stand-up from Amber Nelson (fearless, innovative rising star; Comedy Central; sketch troupes Murderfist and The Prom, co-host of The Dream Show), Boris Khaykin (College Humor), and David Ebert (sketch group Alamo), all performing at the UCB East theatre: The Tony Show

[$] 9:30 pm ($12): Sketch comedy, improv, and stand-up from comics including Steve Siddell (The Scene, Craig Ferguson) at The PIT upstairs theatre co-produced by Micah Sherman: Old School Sketch Comedy Show

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, HBO, Showtime, MTV), Luis J. Gomez, Dave Smith, and other NYC stand-ups performing live on stage for this podcast show at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City: Legion of Skanks

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Livia Scott (magical comedic chameleon; Conan O’Brien, Law & Order, VH1, feature film National Lampoon’s Dirty Movie; sketch groups Scrambled Legs and The Livia Scott Sketch Program), Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents), Nick Naney, Anthony O’Connell, and Paul Higrie performing stand-up or sketch for this free weekly show at Brooklyn’s Over the Eight (594 Union Ave) hosted by Bret Davis: The Tuesday Special

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Stand-ups Matteo Lane, Ryan Beck, Liza Treyger, Tomas Delgado, Alison Zeidman, Patrick Hastie, and Tanael Joachim TJ performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City produced by Peggy O’Leary & Rebecca A. Trent and hosted tonight by Sam Evans: Creek Cave Live

Tuesday Open Mics & Jams

5:00 pm ($5): Two-hour open-mic for 20 stand-ups performing for 5 minutes each, with sign-up online here, at the Stand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): Stand Up NY Open Mic

[TOP PICK] [ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): In this delightful weekly open-mic show, each comic has 3 minutes to try out a character-based bit (e.g., for a solo show, sketch, or audition) at The PIT downstairs lounge, hosted by Jen Kwok (Comedy Central) and Keisha Zollar (Doppelganger): Imposter Open Mic

[ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): Open mic sketch that allows you to either perform a sketch with your own performers or bring in pages for the audience to perform at The PIT Green Room, followed by feedback on your bit from PIT “sketch-perts:” Pens & Pencils

6:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, running 2 1/2 hours. Arrive 30 minutes before the show to get on the signup sheet. This is a fine opportunity to perform at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open mic for comedy of all types providing 2 minutes for each performer (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Tim Unkenholz: Butt Factory

[ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): A weekly improv jam hosted by group Judith at This Theater (154 West 29th Street, 2nd Floor): Judith Jam

[FREE] 6:30 pm: Weekly stand-up open mic (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at People’s Republic of Brooklyn (247 Smith Street) hosted by Dustin Drury: This Is Happening Open MIc

7:00 pm ($2, which includes a free beer or water): Open mic stand-up providing a whopping 10 minutes per comic. Email PhoningItInMic@gmail.com with subject line Phoning Tuesday to sign up; or take a chance at lottery sign-up live between 6:45 and 7:45 at Brit Pack Studios (153 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor) hosted by Ian Fidance: Comics Phoning It In

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: This weekly two-hour open mic storytelling show allows each performer 8 minutes to tell a compelling and funny tale at Queens LIC’s The Creek downstairs lounge hosted by Jake Hart and a guest co-host (not announced): The Dump

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): Open mic stand-up that’s first come, first serve (signup starts at 8:30) and provides each performer 5 minutes—or 4 minutes plus 2 minutes of feedback!—at the Producer’s Club (358 West 44th Street): Train Wreck Open Mic Stand-Up

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:15: Sign up at 9:30 pm for the opportunity to make up a musical on the spot with The Magnet improv group David: Magnet Musical Improv Mixer

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up at UCB East hosted by Boris Khaykin, John Trowbridge, and/or Katie East: Tuesday Night Open Mic

11:00 pm ($3): A breathtaking 40 comics are given 2 minutes each in this rapid-fire open-mic stand-up show at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted with wit and energy by Jay Welch: Bring It

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Weekly walk-in open mic stand-up providing 3 minutes for each comic whose name is pulled from a bucket at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Michelle Slonim: Rapid Fire

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): A weekly improv jam for students at all levels to work on their skills at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Elke Reid and David Frasure: Study Hall

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$20)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

The Creek and the Cave
(Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all shows free)

This Theater
(154 West 29th Street; new venue that, at its best, features shows comparable to UCB & PIT; free-$12)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
(117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.)

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Comic Strip Live
(1568 Second Avenue, off 81st; Upper East Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Stand Up NY
(236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; Upper West Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Laughing Devil
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club, with MST3K-style movie night on Thursdays; 2-drink min.)

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible BestNewYorkComedy.com. He is literally the only person in NYC providing daily summaries of what’s happening comedy-wise. It must be exhausting keeping that monster of a website alive…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 7/14/14

July 14, 2014

For FringeNYC 2014 pre-fest coverage, please click here.

TV Alert: Hannibal Buress is on David Letterman;
Margaret Cho’s on Craig Ferguson; Elie Kemper’s on Conan O’Brien;
Matt Besser is on @midnight

Chris Kelly

At UCB Chelsea, SNL & Broad City writer Chris Kelly (left) performs one-man storytelling show America’s Princess Diana

Aidy Bryant

…and at UCB East, SNL star Aidy Bryant tells stories with Aparna Nancherla and more at Ruby Karp’s HelloGiggles

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] 7:00 pm: Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central, co-host of Live From Outer Space) hones a 30-minute stand-up set every night this week through Saturday at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Week At the Creek: Erik Bergstrom

[FREE] 7:00 pm to midnight: Five free hours of young improvisors performing at The PIT downstairs lounge: Free Improv Monday

[TOP PICK][$] 7:45 pm, 9:30 pm, and 11:15 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s comics include Ted Alexandro, Rachel Feinstein, Kevin Brennan, Dov Davidoff, and Lenny Marcus at the 7:45 show, and Jeff Ross, Ryan Hamilton, Big Jay Oakerson, Matt Lamp, and Wil Sylvince at the 11:15 show, all performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Monday

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5; sold out of seats, but you can probably get in via the standby line if you don’t mind standing): A one-man storytelling show by Chris Kelly, staff writer for Saturday Night Live and Broad City, at the UCB Chelsea theatre: America’s Princess Diana

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Storyteller/comics Aidy Bryant (cast member of Saturday Night Live), Aparna Nancherla (delightfully wry, razor-sharp stand-up; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, former writer/performer for FX’s Totally Biased), Phil Hanley (Jay Leno, Comedy Central), Charla Lauriston (staff writer for upcoming Tina Fey NBC series; MTV), John Early (30 Rock), and Molly Horan share true tales for this confessional storytelling show at UCB East hosted by the extraordinary Ruby Karp: HelloGiggles

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($8 at the door or $9.47 online): The Lucas Brothers (Jimmy Fallon, FOX’s Lucas Bros Moving Company, 22 Jump Street, Arrested Development), Alex Koll (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central), Jordan Carlos (MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Guy Court, HBO’s Girls, Comedy Central’s Broad City, VH1, Adult Swim), Emily Maya Mills, and Sid Singh performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) guest-hosted by the Kondabolu Brothers: Night Train

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Charla Lauriston (staff writer for upcoming Tina Fey NBC series; MTV), Alan Starzinski, Francesca Day, Debbie Meisenzahl, Ross Parsons, Jennifer Salzman, and Jeff Kreisler performing stand-up or sketch for this free weekly show at People’s Republic of Brooklyn (247 Smith Street) hosted by Tim Ellis & Mo Fathelbab: Manifesto

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Four improvisers form teams with comics they’ve never performed with before at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: The Kaleidoscope

[TOP PICK]8:30 pm ($10, which includes a free drink): Superb storytellers Jim O’Grady (The New York Times, NPR’s This American Life, WNYC Radio, Moth GrandSlam Champion), Diana Spechler (author of Who By Fire and Skinny), Susan Kent (Tell It), and Lucas Connolly tell true tales about this month’s theme Revolutions at 2A (25 Avenue A off 2nd Street) hosted by Andrew Linderman: Local Stories: Revolutions

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:30 pm: John Milhiser (cast member of Saturday Night Live), Joe Pera (hilarious and genius deadpan stand-up; Adult Swim; for a very special one-minute set at Carolines, please click here; for Joe’s latest Kaufman awards submissions, please click here and here), Adam Newman (David Letterman, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, host of Big Long Sets), Jason Saenz (Comedy Central, sketch group Onassis, co-host of Late Night Trash), Michelle De Swarte (UK star visiting NYC), and Andrea Allan performing stand-up, plus group The Peace Accords performing improv, at Brooklyn’s Muchmore’s (2 Havemeyer Street) hosted by Dan Fox: Pizza Beach Comedy Hour

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5; sold out of seats, but you can probably get in via the standby line if you don’t mind standing): Two UCB Chelsea house sketch groups try out new material: Beige (which includes brilliant rising stars Dan Hodapp and Langan Kingsley) and (212) (which includes brilliant rising stars Natasha Rothwell and Tim Martin, plus the wonderful Veronica Osorio, Eddie Dunn, Ari Scott, Erik Tanouye, and Achilles Stamatelaky): Maude Night: Beige and (212)

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:30 pm ($12): Improvisors aim for “the comedy, drama, and vocal juiciness of a Mozart masterpiece made up on the spot; come hear beautiful arias appear out of nowhere as someone’s beloved is ravaged by a cheese monster, Gary Busey, or anything else the audience suggests” at The PIT upstairs theatre: The Improvised Opera

9:30 pm ($5): Improv veterans Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, Phillip Jackson, and/or Steve Theiss hosting & performing in a show at UCB East with guest improvisors: Improv Nerds

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), Gary Vider (hilarious deadpan stand-up; for great Conan O’Brien set, please click here; for more jokes, please click here), Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, MTV), Pete Lee (Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing), Joe Zimmerman, Ry Doon, Nate Craig, Luchana Gatica, and Jeff Kreisler performing stand-up for this free weekly show at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street) hosted by Aaron Berg (TV series 24 Hour Rental, documentary A Universal Language): Frantic Mondays

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): Twelve improv comics who are “friends of Dorothy” perform at The Magnet hosted by Andrew Fafoutakis: There’s No Place Like Home: A GLBTQ Event

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest comics in the world—who aren’t announced in advance, but it’s virtually always a great lineup—at UCB Chelsea hosted by the wonderful Leo Allen: Whiplash

Monday Open Mics & Jams

5:00 pm ($5): Two-hour open-mic for 20 stand-ups performing for 5 minutes each, with sign-up online here, at the Stand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): Stand Up NY Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open mic stand-up show that provides each performer whose name is pulled from a bucket 5 minutes on stage—and also allows everyone play Bingo!—at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Julia Lundy & Veronica Elizabeth: Bingo Open Mic

6:00 pm & 8:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, with each show running 1 hour and 45 minutes. Arrive 30 minutes before the show you want to be in to get on the signup sheet. This is a fine opportunity to perform at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club Open Mic

6:00 pm ($5 plus 1 drink min.): Booked open mic stand-up providing 7 minutes per comic for this 2-hour show at Klimat Lounge (77 East 7th Street) hosted by Gregory Joseph. To get on the performance list for future shows, email Gregory at evgigglepit@gmail.com: East Village Giggle Pit

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 6:30 pm: Open-mic storytelling, with names drawn out of a bucket at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”), hosted by Julia Wiedeman: Happy Hour Open-Mic Storytelling with Julia Wiedeman

7:00 pm ($2, which includes a free beer or water): Open mic stand-up providing a whopping 10 minutes per comic. Email PhoningItInMic@gmail.com with subject line Phoning Monday to sign up; or take a chance at lottery sign-up live between 6:45 and 7:45 at Brit Pack Studios (153 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor) hosted by Tim Duffy: Comics Phoning It In

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 5 minutes for each comic who reserves a spot in advance (by emailing Dan Fox at danmaxfox@gmail.com) and 3 minutes for each comic who signs up on the spot (sign-up starts at 6:45 and ends at 8:30) at Brooklyn’s Muchmore’s (2 Havemeyer Street) hosted by Dan Fox: Muchmore’s Stand-Up Open Mic

[FREE] 7:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show, with 10 comics each performing for 5 minutes, at Brooklyn’s Colony (274 4th Avenue) hosted by Emily Winter: Sparky the Dog Open Mic

7:30 pm ($10; sign-up starts at 7:00 pm): Open mic for stand-ups, storytellers, singers, poets, actors, and more, with 5 minutes per performer and 25 slots available, at One and One Bar’s Downstairs Nexus Lounge (76 1st Street, corner of First Avenue) hosted by Nathan P., followed by a raucous afterparty with dancing & drink specials from 10:00 to midnight: Inspired Word’s Open Mic Joint

[FREE] 10:30 pm: Improv veterans Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, and Phillip Jackson hosting & performing in a show at UCB East with improvisors taken from the audience…and who may include you: Improv Nerds Jam

11:00 pm ($3): Open mic stand-up, with each comic getting 5 minutes and room for 15 comics who sign up per show, at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Kat Toledo and/or Alan Shain: The Power Exchange

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Improv students are welcomed onto the stage at The PIT downstairs lounge for this weekly open access show hosted by Gary DeNoia & Langston Belton: Base Jam

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$20)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

The Creek and the Cave
(Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all shows free)

This Theater
(154 West 29th Street; new venue that, at its best, features shows comparable to UCB & PIT; free-$12)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
(117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.)

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Comic Strip Live
(1568 Second Avenue, off 81st; Upper East Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Stand Up NY
(236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; Upper West Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Laughing Devil
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club, with MST3K-style movie night on Thursdays; 2-drink min.)

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible BestNewYorkComedy.com. He is literally the only person in NYC providing daily summaries of what’s happening comedy-wise. It must be exhausting keeping that monster of a website alive…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 7/13/14

July 13, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For best FringeNYC 2014 video promos, please click here.

Lifetime Unoriginal Movies

It’s a great night at The Magnet, kicking off with improvised Unoriginal Lifetime Movies

Michelle Wolf

…then late night TV writers Michelle Wolf and Matt Koff each perform 30-minute stand-up sets

TV KIds Place!

…and then sketch group Party. puts on a last hoorah for a cancelled faux TV children’s show at TV Kids Place!

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: Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on Last Comic Standing; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, comedy CDs Small, Dork, and Handsome. Vegan Mind Meld, and Meat Robot), Sasheer Zamata (instant star cast member of Saturday Night Live), Ophira Eisenberg (Comedy Central, VH1, Showtime, The Today Show, host of NPR’s trivia/puzzle show Ask Me Another, bestselling book being made into movie Screw Everyone), Sam Morril (Comedy Central), Monroe Martin (finalist on this season’s Last Comic Standing), Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, MTV), and Anthony Devito performing for a free outdoor show at Tompkins Square Park (at the Old Bandshell Lawn): Laughter in the Park

[FREE] 5:00 pm: A mix of longform, shortform, and musical improv from five groups, typically including Mishmosh, at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Michael Venzor: The Long and Short of It

[TOP PICK] 6:00 pm ($5): Ace gal improvisors Megan Gray, Rosie Whalen, and more springboard an audience suggestion to create a terrible Lifetime TV movie (“come prepared to watch a live film filled with heartbreak, disease, violence, despair, hope, courage, sassy neighbors, murders, heroes, whores, assholes, dumb babies who take up all your time, revenge, love, sex, hate, and chocolate”) at The Magnet theatre: Lifetime Unoriginal Movies

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central, co-host of Live From Outer Space) hones a 30-minute stand-up set every night this week through Saturday at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Week At the Creek: Erik Bergstrom

7:00 pm ($5): Improvisors create children’s tales on the spot based on an audience suggestion at This Theater (154 West 29th Street, 2nd Floor): The Improvised Children’s Book

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10) and 9:30 pm [FREE]: UCB Chelsea’s signature improv comedy extravaganza, which typically includes superstars in the improv world such as Chris Gethard, and occasionally network TV & movie stars such as Amy Poehler and Horatio Sanz: ASSSSCAT 3000

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($7): Two powerhouse stand-ups, Michelle Wolf (staff writer for and performer on Seth Meyers; MTV’s Girl Code, IFC) and show host Matt Koff (writer for The Daily Show), each perform a 30-minute set at The Magnet theatre: Michelle Wolf and Matt Koff

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5 at the door or $6.49 online): The spectacular Jo Firestone (dynamic rising star; host of Punderdome 3000 and The Incredible Game Show Showcase) hosts this show in which “you represent your single friends onstage in a live dating game! Single friends may cringe and remain as anonymous as they want in the crowd unless their friends are chosen for the match! Then they must come onstage to retrieve 2 drink tickets which they must redeem immediately. The New York Post calls this ‘part roast, part game-show, part social experiment.’ Arrive early to register you and a friend. Open to all orientations. Out of 100 couples matched, 5 couples have managed to develop actual long-term relationships. One couple just moved in together. It’s amazing and defies all odds” at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street): Friends of Single People

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($26 plus two-drink min.): A huge star in South Africa who’s also performed on Jay Leno, Chelsea Lately, off-off-Broadway, and at the Edinburgh Festival headlining one last night at the Gotham Comedy Club: Trevor Noah

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($15; no min.): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, Chelsea Lately, writer for MTV’s Girl Code, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Dive Comedy and Stripped Stories), John Moses, and Luis J. Gomez performing stand-up that rips something or someone deserving to shreds at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street) hosted by Nathan Rand: An Invitation to a Beheading

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00, 9:45 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s comics include Todd Barry, Gary Gulman, Gregg Rogell, Kevin Brennan, and Matt Lamp at the 8:00 show; Jeff Ross, Ryan Hamilton, Rachel Feinstein, and Dov Davidoff at the 9:45 show; and Dave Attell, Greg Warren, BIg Jay Oakerson, and Sam Morril at the 11:30 show, with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Sunday

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($12): “Improvised one-acts in the style of prominent playwrights and genres, spontaneously generating an original and hilarious work of instantly important theater right before your eyes” at The PIT upstairs theatre: The Improvised Play

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Superb improvisors Micah Sherman, Ashley Ward, Doug Stoley, and Morgan Phillips, and guest improv groups The Punctual Drunks and Marmalade, join host Skycopter (which includes the incredible David Carl) to make up one-act plays on the spot at The PIT downstairs lounge: Act One

8:00 pm ($5): Sasheer Zamata (instant star cast member of Saturday Night Live), Joe Zimmerman (Comedy Central Half Hour), Nate Craig (Tosh.0), Robby Slowik, Lane Piescheland, and Rojo Perez performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon): If You Build It

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Typically terrific stand-ups (not announced) performing at Brooklyn’s Knitting Factory (361 Metropolitan Avenue) typically hosted by the wonderful Hannibal Buress (former staff writer for 30 Rock, Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Louie, The Eric Andre Show, host of Comedy Night, one-hour Comedy Central specials Animal Furnace and Live From Chicago): Comedy Night

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($7): Sketch group Party. performs a show based on this innovative premise: “One of the last remaining Saturday morning children’s television shows, the long-running TV Kids Place!, is finally cancelled. And there’s only one thing host Pippi Pederson-Morales, Max the Mathemagician, Dr. Cowboy, Cloggo the Janitor, Willy McNilly, and the rest of the gang can do to stop it—put on the greatest show of their lives. Can Pippi and friends save Saturday morning kids TV? Come to a live taping and see for yourself!” at The Magnet theatre: TV Kids Place!

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Mike Trainor, Irene Hartmann, Dan Shaki, Chris Calogero, Sean McCarthy, and Owen Straw performing at the East Village’s Beauty Bar for this free weekly stand-up show hosted by Adam Sokol, Brad Austin, and/or Nate Fridson: Comedy at Beauty Bar

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:30 pm ($12): Superb improvisors Micah Sherman (The Baldwins), Julie Sharbutt (Gravid Water, Instamacy), Katie Hartman (Hartman & Carl, Skinny Bitch Jesus Meeting, Gypsy Danger), Meg Griffiths (The Baldwins), Matt Catanzano (Simply Unemployable), and David Rysdahl (The Studio System) make up theatrical scenes at The PIT upstairs theatre: People Improvising

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($15; no min.): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Pete Lee (Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing), Joe Zimmerman (Comedy Central Half Hour), and Aaron Berg (TV series 24 Hour Rental, documentary A Universal Language) performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander, Gary Gulman, Gary Vider, and More

Sunday Open Mics & Open Stages

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early walk-in open-mic stand-up show (put your name in the bucket at 3:45), providing 3 minutes or more per comic at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by James Ferrarella: Face-Plant Comedy Open Mic

[ALMOST FREE] 5:00 pm ($1): Sign up at 4:30 pm to do improv with experienced PIT performers at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Sasha Capelli, Eitan Levine, and Shaina Stigler: 10K Jam Jam

[FREE] 5:30 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 3 minutes per comic (unless not many folks show up, in which case there’ll be more time), with names drawn out of a bucket at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”) hosted by Emmy Blotnick, Matt Nedostup, and/or Sachi Ezurafor: Sledgehammer

6:00 pm ($5): Open-mic stand-up that includes professional feedback on each comic’s 5-minute set at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.): Mic-Shop: Open Mic Workshop

9:30 pm ($3): Open-mic comedy, with 3-5 minutes per walk-in performer who signs up (first come, first serve) at The PIT downstairs lounge, hosted by Will Neville: Amateur Night At The Gemini

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Open-mic show for sketch and character bits running 3-5 minutes at The Magnet hosted by Sebastian Conelli. Everyone who signs up—at 9:45 pm at the box office—is likely to get onstage: Sketch in Progress

[FREE] 10:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show (sign up is at 9:45 pm) providing 5 minutes for each comic whose name is pulled from the bucket at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Christi Chiello: Lance Bass Space Mic

[FREE] 10:00 pm: The only open-stage show for entire groups of improvisors and sketch comics, running weekly at UCB East hosted by Austin Rodrigues: Bring Your Own Team: Improv/Sketch Team Jam

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$15)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

The Creek and the Cave
(Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all shows free)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
(117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.)

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Comic Strip Live
(1568 Second Avenue, off 81st; Upper East Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Stand Up NY
(236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; Upper West Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Laughing Devil
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club, with MST3K-style movie night on Thursdays; 2-drink min.)

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible BestNewYorkComedy.com. He is literally the only person in NYC providing daily summaries of what’s happening comedy-wise. It must be exhausting keeping that monster of a website alive…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Saturday 7/12/14

July 12, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Trevor Noah

Trevor Noah continues his headlining run at the Gotham Comedy Club

Colin Jost

…and SNL’s Colin Jost headlines one last night at Carolines Comedy Club

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:

6:00 pm ($10): Two musical improv groups compete based on suggestions from the audience at This Theater (154 West 29th Street, 2nd Floor): Comedy Sportz

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm, 8:00 pm, 8:45 pm, 10:30 pm, and 12:15 am ($20-$24 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s comics include Hannibal Buress, Gregg Rogell, Kevin Brennan, Matt Lamp, Lynne Koplitz, and Robert Kelly at the 7:00 show; Hannibal Buress, Ben Bailey, Kevin Brennan, Matt Lamp, and Robert Kelly at the 8:45 show; Gary Gulman, Greer Barnes, Kevin Brennan, Dov Davidoff, and Matt Lamp at the 10:30 show; and Dave Attell, Jeff Ross, Greer Barnes, Kevin Brennan, Dov Davidoff, and Big Jay Oakerson at the 12:15 show, with four of the shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane), and the 8:00 pm show at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Saturday

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm & 9:00 pm & 11:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 260-2445 and mention HyReviews.com, but there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam), Dean Edwards (Saturday Night Live, MTV’s Celebrity Deathmatch, HBO’s The Sopranos, feature film Scared Shrekless), Doug Smith (co-host of See You In Hell), and more performing stand-up at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[$] 7:00 pm ($12): “Every family has a black sheep, but the Damn Family is all black sheep. When they get together, things get weird with not-so-wholesome, not-so-family-friendly sketch comedy fun” at The PIT downstairs lounge: Damn Family

7:30 pm ($10): Improv powerhouses Charlie Todd, Jim Santangeli, Natasha Rothwell, and more at UCB Chelsea interview an audience member about where he or she grew up and then “turn that town’s tourist attractions, landmarks, hangouts, local celebrities, urban legends, and more into a hilarious show made up on the spot:” The Curfew: Not From Around Here

7:30 pm ($10): Sharp Magnet improvisors “perform organic freeform improvisation in two mind-blowing parts; the only rule is that there are no rules:” The Weave

[$] 7:30 pm & 10:00 pm ($27.25 & 2-drink min): The head writer of Saturday Night Live headlines one last night at the Carolines Comedy Club: Colin Jost

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm & 10:00 pm & 11:45 pm ($26 plus two-drink min.): A huge star in South Africa who’s also performed on Jay Leno, Chelsea Lately, off-off-Broadway, and at the Edinburgh Festival headlining tonight and Sunday at the Gotham Comedy Club: Trevor Noah

[TOP PICK]8:00 pm ($20; no min.): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Sasheer Zamata (instant star cast member of Saturday Night Live), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Pete Lee (Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing), and Derek Gaines performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander, Sasheer Zamata, Gary Gulman, and More

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Improv groups Big Black Car (which includes Chris Grace, Nate Starkey, and Ashley Ward) and The Baldwins (which includes Micah Sherman Brigid Boyle, and Sarah Nowak) make stuff up at The PIT upstairs theatre: BBC and The Baldwins

8:00 pm ($10): A freestyle rapping long-form improv troupe takes the stage for nearly an hour at The PIT downstairs lounge: North Coast

[FREE] 8:00 pm: This show-and-tell event encourages you to “bring your weird family photos, demonstrate how many flips you can do in a row, reveal the tattoo your uncle gave you at last year’s family retreat—share anything crazy, kooky, strange or insane; the best of the best will win prizes and bragging rights,” plus stand-up from Corinne Fisher, Alyssa Wolff, Lawson Leong, Kerry Feehan, Janelle James, and Cameron Vannini, all at Brooklyn’s Over the Eight (594 Union Ave) produced by Lukas Kaiser and hosted by Toby Scales & Sean O’Reilly: Showcasey Jones

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups J.F. Harris, Shakir Standley, Natalie Shure, Julia Solomon, Tim Dillon, Ashley Bez, and Joel Kim Booster performing at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Peggy O’Leary: Hard, Lonely, and Vicious

[FREE] 8:30 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at The Irish Exit (978 Second Avenue, off 52nd Street, in the back room) hosted by Gary Vider (hilarious writer & deadpan stand-up; for sample jokes, please click here): Comedy at Irish Exit

9:00 pm ($10): Magnet improvisors team up with poets at Kiss*Punch*Poem

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): Using real horror films purchased in local gas stations and bodegas, the hosts select specific clips to play for 30 seconds, pause, and then ask the improvisers to finish the scene. Will anyone survive at The PIT downstairs lounge? Attend at your own peril with hosts J. W. Crump and Jordan Hirsch: Gas Station Horror

[$] 9:30 pm ($12): Two-prov, with tonight’s improv pairs including Nate Starkey & Ashley Ward, making up scenes at at The PIT downstairs lounge: Shift Coverage

[TOP PICK]10:00 pm ($20; no min.): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Russ Meneve (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Pete Lee (Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing), and Derek Gaines performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander, Gary Gulman, Russ Meneve, and More

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($10): Clips of Saturday morning cartoon shows from the 1980s will be screened and ridiculed (with love) by Pete LePage (Comic Book Club) and more at This Theater (154 West 29th Street, 2nd Floor): Saturday Morning Deathgrip

[TOP PICK]10:00 pm ($10): Zhubin Parang (writer for The Daily Show), Langan Kingsley (rising star; sketch group Beige, one-woman show The Dicewoman Cometh), Michael Kayne (Baby Wants Candy, Diamond Lion), Aaron Jackson (Fuck That Shit, Newsadoozies), Tracey Wigfield (former writer for 30 Rock), Nate Dern (news editor for Funny or Die), and more form an improv group at UCB East that won this year’s prestigious Cage Match championship by springboarding scenes off interviewing an audience member about his or her love life: What I Did For Love

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: “Starting in 1982, the city of Atlanta threw an annual party called Freaknik which essentially became the largest black spring break party in the country. The party became so big and wild that the city shut it down for good in 1996. But comedians Andy Sandford, Noah Gardenswartz, and Steve Forrest are bringing Freaknik back…to Long Island City. ‘Comedy Freaknik’ will be a lot like the original Freaknik, except it’s going to happen once a month, and it will be a comedy show hosted by three white guys. That’s basically the only difference” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Freaknik

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): At UCB Chelsea, improv group Grandma’s Ashes—which includes stellar talents Ryan Karels, Morgan Grace Jarrett, Brandon Scott Jones, and more—takes your written secrets and turns them into very funny improv scenes: Grandma’s Ashes: We Won’t Tell

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Sharp improvisor Nick Kanellis & Peter McNerney make up scenes at The Magnet as comedy duo Trike

[TOP PICK] 11:30 pm ($5): Abbi Jacobson (co-star of Comedy Central’s Broad City) and stand-up Gary Richardson are guests, while Anthony Apruzzese and a mob of other comics perform sketch at this hybrid variety/talk show co-hosted by Josh Sharp (GUMP) at the UCB East theatre: Showtime with Anthony Apruzzese

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($5): Mark Normand (hilarious red-hot rising star; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, Inside Amy Schumer, Last Comic Standing, VH1′s Best Week Ever; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Streeter Seidell (Editor-in-Chief of College Humor; Jimmy Kimmel, MTV’s Pranked), Brandon Scott Wolf (College Humor), Danny Vega (Food Network), Katie Sicking (improv group Buchanan), and Athena Reich performing stand-up or sketch at UCB Chelsea with hosts Andy Rocco & Steven Slate: Underground Americana

[FREE] Midnight: A monthly talk show hosted by Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central) interviewing “musicians, authors, actors, porn stars, and other awesome people” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Aftermirth

Saturday Open Mics and Jams

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early weekly open mic stand-up show (“starts late enough to sleep off that hangover but ends just in time to begin a new one”) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Jhoel Walkowski & Evan Davis: The Amateur Hour

[FREE] 5:30 pm: Walk-in open mic comedy show—stand-up, character, or funny story—providing 5 minutes per comic at The Fifth Estate Bar (506 5th Avenue, off 12th Street) hosted by Meghan O’Keefe: Open Mic-hael Douglas

5:30 pm ($5): Walk-in open mic, with sign-up at 5:15 pm and each stand-up performing for 5 minutes, at the Comedy Village Comedy Club (107 MacDougal Street): Comedy Village

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$15)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

The Creek and the Cave
(Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all shows free)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
(117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.)

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Comic Strip Live
(1568 Second Avenue, off 81st; Upper East Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Stand Up NY
(236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; Upper West Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Laughing Devil
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club, with MST3K-style movie night on Thursdays; 2-drink min.)

 From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible BestNewYorkComedy.com. He is literally the only person in NYC providing daily summaries of what’s happening comedy-wise. It must be exhausting keeping that monster of a website alive…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Friday 7/11/14

July 11, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

TV Alert: Marc Maron and Melissa McCarthy are on Jimmy Kimmel (repeated from 6/30); Jenny Slate is Seth Meyers (repeated from 6/19); Julian McCullough and Moshe Kasher are on Chelsea Lately (repeated from 6/30)

Trevor Noah

South African comedy star Trevor Noah headlines through Sunday at the Gotham Comedy Club

Aidy Bryant

…and SNL’s Aidy Bryant performs improv with Tami Sagher and Shannon O’Neill as brilliant trio Aidy/Tami/Spo

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] [$] 7:00 pm, 8:00 pm, 8:45 pm, 10:30 pm, and 12:15 am ($20-$24 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s comics include Hannibal Buress, Gregg Rogell, Kevin Brennan, Matt Lamp, Lynne Koplitz, and Robert Kelly at the 7:00 show; Hannibal Buress, Ben Bailey, Kevin Brennan, Matt Lamp, and Robert Kelly at the 8:45 show; Gary Gulman, Greer Barnes, Kevin Brennan, Kevin Brennan, and Dov Davidoff at the 10:30 show, and Dave Attell, Jeff Ross, Greer Barnes, Lenny Marcus, Big Jay Oakerson, and Dov Davidoff at the 12:15 show, with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) except for the 8:00 pm show at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Friday

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm & 9:00 pm & 11:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 260-2445 and mention HyReviews.com, but there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam), Dean Edwards (Saturday Night Live, MTV’s Celebrity Deathmatch, HBO’s The Sopranos, feature film Scared Shrekless), Doug Smith (co-host of See You In Hell), and more performing stand-up at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm ($12): All-gal storytelling show of “true tales with feelings; so many feelings…” featuring Mallory Schlossberg, Claire Yale, and Nicole Dellert performing at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Caitlin Brodnick & Lisa Kleinman: Shut Up Storytelling Show

7:00 pm ($7): Sketch group CA$H performs for an hour at The Magnet theatre: CA$H Prize

7:00 pm ($10): Musical improv from the group that hosts the weekly Pitch jam performing at The PIT downstairs lounge: [title of team]

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): Three improv giants—Tami Sagher, Shannon O’Neill, and SNL star Aidy Bryant—make stuff up for a show that quickly sold out at UCB Chelsea (but you can still probably get in if you’re okay with standing): Aidy/Tami/Spo

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): Improv group Bucky makes up one long scene in the same location (a winning form that’s helped such teams as Death by Roo Roo win a whole lot of Cage Match victories)—and, when SNL is on break, sometimes includes star Sasheer Zamata—at the UCB East theatre: Bucky: Here and Now

[$] 7:30 pm & 10:00 pm ($27.25 & 2-drink min): The head writer of Saturday Night Live headlines tonight and Saturday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Colin Jost

[TOP PICK]8:00 pm ($20; no min.): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Wyatt Cenac (former star correspondent for The Daily Show, Comedy Central hour-long special, Adult Swim, host of Night Train), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Mike Vecchione (Jay Leno, Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing, Howard Stern), and Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, MTV) performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander, Wyatt Cenac, Gary Gulman, Big Jay Oakerson, and More

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($8): A mix of storytelling, stand-up, and characters from Julia Wiedeman (host of UCB East’s Happy Hour Story Hour), Jeff Simmermon (NPR’s The American Life, Moth StorySlam Champion, host of And I Am Not Lying), Tim Ellis (co-host of Manifesto), Corinne Fisher, Kate Greathead, and Tiana Miller for a show providing advice from actual relationship experts Marc Gerber and Sara Armour at This Theater (154 West 29th Street, 2nd Floor): Relationshit!

8:00 pm ($10): Two PIT upstairs theatre improv groups making up a musical on the spot: Vern and Royals

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Comedy trio Eli Sairs, Joel Walkowski, and Jeff Wesselschmidt performs at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Wildcats

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:30 pm & 10:30 pm ($26 plus two-drink min.): A huge star in South Africa who’s also performed on Jay Leno, Chelsea Lately, off-off-Broadway, and at the Edinburgh Festival headlining tonight through Sunday at the Gotham Comedy Club: Trevor Noah

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10): Before this Magnet show, audience members may anonymously submit written confessions, secrets, rants, advice and opinions which will be used onstage by the improvisors—who include such talents as Laura Grey (stellar old-time radio style theatrical podcast Horrorgasm, improv troupe Salmon Diane, sketch/improv duo Klepper & Grey): The Friday Night Sh*w

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:30 pm ($12): Ophira Eisenberg (Comedy Central, VH1, Showtime, The Today Show, host of NPR’s trivia/puzzle show Ask Me Another, bestselling book being made into movie Screw Everyone), Naomi Ekperigin, and Nathaniel Cocca-Bates tell tales about this month’s theme of Wedding Season, and then powerhouse improv musical guest Rebecca Vigil and her band The Vigilante will sing a song on the spot based on those stories at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Anna Rose Roisman: You Probably Think This Song Is About You

8:30 pm ($5): Joe Pera (hilarious and genius deadpan stand-up; Adult Swim; for a very special one-minute set at Carolines, please click here; for Joe’s latest Kaufman awards submissions, please click here and here), Ben Kronberg (Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, ABC; clash with Roseanne on this season’s Last Comic Standing led to #gofuckyourselfBen), Matt Ruby (MTV; sharp co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here, award-winning blog Sandpaper Suit), Becky Yamamoto (Web series Uninspired; co-host of Comedy School Dropout), Dave Rosinsky, Simmons McDavid, and Brian McLoughlin performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Fort Useless (36 Ditmars Street) hosted by George Flanagan: Spit Take Friday

[TOP PICK]9:00 pm ($10): Some of the finest improv in the country from brilliant comics Shannon O’Neill, Silvija Ozols, Jordan Klepper, Connor Ratliff, Don Fanelli, Will Hines, and/or Michael Delaney forming a seamless and hilarious group mind at UCB Chelsea—the all-star members of The Stepfathers

[TOP PICK]9:00 pm ($10): Cipha Sounds (Hot 97, Chappelle’s Show) thought it would be cool if a hip-hop star told tales and then improvisors made up scenes based on them. This monthly show is the result, with a “secret” music celebrity “mesmerizing the crowd with amazing stories and linguistic darts to spark the creativity of some of the best improvisers in NYC,” the latter being Anthony Atamanuik, Neil Casey, Natasha Rothwell, Brandon Gardner, Lydia Hensler, Christian Capozzoli, Abra Tabak, and/or Shaun Diston at the UCB East theatre: Take It Personal: The Hip-Hip Improv Show

[FREE—plus FREE DRINKS! Reserve seats by emailing lukaskaiser@gmail.com with subject LEVER2000] 9:00 pm for free drinks & snacks, 9:30 pm for show: Ben Kronberg (Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, ABC; clash with Roseanne on this season’s Last Comic Standing led to #gofuckyourselfBen), Justy Dodge (co-host of Married to Comedy podcast and Too Much Information on comicalradio.com; “I was kind of a tomboy growing up. Like, I had Barbies, but only because my Ninja Turtles needed bitches;” for dark bio video, please click here), John Early (Ars Nova’s Showgasm), and Shakir Standley performing stand-up at Brit Pack Studios (153 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor) hosted by Hoff Matthews & Lukas Kaiser: HP5000 Live Comedy

9:30 pm ($10): A sketch comedy troupe performs at The PIT downstairs lounge: Bridge & Tunnel: A Sketch Show

[TOP PICK]10:00 pm ($20; no min.): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Wyatt Cenac (former star correspondent for The Daily Show, Comedy Central hour-long special, Adult Swim, host of Night Train), Ben Bailey (Emmy Award-winning host of Cash Cab and NBC’s Who’s Still Standing? ; Comedy Central Presents, Jay Leno), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Mike Vecchione (Jay Leno, Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing, Howard Stern), and Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, MTV) performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander, Wyatt Cenac, Ben Bailey, Big Jay Oakerson, and More

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($10): Singing improvisors at The Magnet using an interview with an audience member to craft The Made-Up Musical

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Dan Soder (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1; for set about being a hypochondriatic drug user, please click here), Amanda Baramki, Alison Leiby, Andrew Short, and a whole bunch of other stand-ups performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City produced by Peggy O’Leary & Rebecca A. Trent and hosted by Christi Chiello: Creek Cave Live

10:00 pm ($8): All-gal dark sketch comedy written & directed by a guy, Michael Newman, with a troublesome title (chances are it’s either great or really bad) at This Theater (154 West 29th Street, 2nd Floor): Total Babes!

[TOP PICK]10:30 pm ($10): Superb improvisors Craig Rowin, Matt Fisher, Sue Galloway, Dan Klein, Brian Faas, Matt Moses, and/or Conner O’Malley—who this year defeated The Stepfathers and thoroughly crushed another troupe at Cage Match before losing by a single vote—make up scenes about an audience member’s legal dispute at the UCB Chelsea theatre: The Law Firm: Law & Disorder

10:30 pm ($10): Adam Newman (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV, host of Big Long Sets), John Harris (Adult Swim, The Onion), and Max Fox performing stand-up, sketch, storytelling, or improv at UCB East hosted by Brandon Scott Jones, D’Arcy Carden, Justin Tyler, Kelly Hudson, and/or Alden Ford: Gentrify

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($10): I’m not sure he’s in NYC tonight, but one of the finest improvisors alive, Joe Bill (Bassprov, iO, co-founder of the Annoyance Theatre) will either personally spearhead or lead in spirit a breathtakingly brilliant group of improvisors from Chicago and New York who will blow the roof off The PIT downstairs lounge with lightning-quick dark comedy unlike anything else in NYC. The other superb players typically are Doug Stoley (Conan O’Brien, The Scene), Amey Goerlich (Indie Cage Match, Krompf, The Scene), Jodi Lennon (Exit 57, Annoyance Theatre), Jed Resnik (Annoyance Theatre, UCB), Silvija Ozols (The Stepfathers), Betsy Stover (UCB), Ari Voukydis (VH1′s Best Week Ever, UCB), Russ Armstrong (iO Chicago, The Magnet), Micah Sherman (Second City, co-host of The Scene, host of Fun), Rick Andrews (Magnet teacher/performer), and Michael Burton (Act One, The Magnet), all declaring Chica Go-Go

[TOP PICK] [$] 11:00 pm ($12): Kevin Brown (30 Rock), Hoda Mahmoodzadegan (founder of Molly’s Milk Truck), Mehdi Barakchian, and more are interviewed and/or perform at this late night talk show hosted by the spectacular dancing Jamie LeeLo at The PIT upstairs theatre: Brunch Night

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Karaoke hosted by Will Winner & Kyle Ayers at Queens LIC’s The Creek downstairs lounge: Karaoke Night

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($5): UCBT house manager and tech guy supreme Pat Baer has scoured the Web to share with you its most bizarre and compelling videos, plus a razor-sharp panel of comics to comment on them—Mike Drucker (hilarious stand-up; Emmy-nominated staff writer for Jimmy Fallon; freelance writer for SNL, The Onion, McSweeney’s), Jessica Morgan (improv group Big Revival), and Ken Beck (sketch group Ripley)—at the UCB Chelsea theatre: 404ing It: Breaking (Down) the Internet

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($5): This monthly stand-up, storytelling, and carny show brings the blog And I Am Not Lying to life on stage, with storytelling from host Jeff Simmermon (NPR’s This American Life) and Ronica Reddick, stand-up from Adam Newman (David Letterman, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, host of Big Long Sets) and Kath Williams, and burlesque from Fem Appeal and Zoe Ziegfeld, all at the UCB East theatre: And I Am Not Lying

Friday Open Mics & Jams

5:00 pm ($5): Two-hour open-mic for 20 stand-ups performing for 5 minutes each, with sign-up online here, at the Stand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): Stand Up NY Open Mic

5:45 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, running 1 hour. Arrive 30 minutes before the show to get on the signup sheet. This is a fine opportunity to perform at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club Open Mic

[ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): PIT musical improv veterans mix with musical improv novices on-stage at the upstairs theatre for Pitch

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic show on a lottery system (sign-ups happen at 5:45-6:00 pm) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with host Eli Sairs: The Orphanage

[ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): Attend to perform improv with experienced PIT performers at The PIT downstairs lounge, with a weekly rotating selection of formats and hosts: Happy Hour

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 3 minutes per comic (unless not many folks show up, in which case there’ll be more time), with names drawn out of a bucket at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”) hosted by Sarah Tollemache and/or Paul Oddo: The Friday Night Hot Chicks Open Mic

[FREE] 8:00 pm: An open-mic show that’s first come, first serve, with each comic getting 5 minutes on stage at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City: Mic and Cheese

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$15)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

The Creek and the Cave
(Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all shows free)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
(117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.)

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Comic Strip Live
(1568 Second Avenue, off 81st; Upper East Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Stand Up NY
(236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; Upper West Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Laughing Devil
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club, with MST3K-style movie night on Thursdays; 2-drink min.)

 From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible BestNewYorkComedy.com. He is literally the only person in NYC providing daily summaries of what’s happening comedy-wise. It must be exhausting keeping that monster of a website alive…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 7/10/14

July 10, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

TV Alert: Michelle Wolf, who’s a staff writer, debuts as a TV stand-up on Seth Meyers; Carl Reiner is on Craig Ferguson; Roseanne is on Jimmy Kimmel; Lisa Kudrow and a great George R. R. Martin interview are on Conan O’Brien (repeated from 5/13); Dana Carvey is on Jimmy Fallon; Last Comic Standing is on at 10:00 pm on NBC

Brilliant comics Jon Glaser…

Jessi Klein

…and Jessi Klein perform in Brooklyn at Larry Murphy’s Myrtle 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:

7:00 pm ($5): Michelle Collins (FOX, MTV, VH1), Brandie Posie, Lawson Leong, and Brock Wilbur performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Sean Crespo, Dan Wilbur, and/or Katina Corrao: Lasers in the Jungle

7:30 pm ($10): A puppet improv & sketch troupe consisting of Nate Brown, Jacqueline Harper, Allison Moy Hayhurst, Julia M. Smith, and David Bizzaro perform at The PIT downstairs lounge: Team Lopez: Improv/Sketch Puppetry

[$] 7:30 pm ($27.25 & 2-drink min): The head writer of Saturday Night Live headlines tonight through Saturday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Colin Jost

[$] 7:45, 8:00, 9:30 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s comics include Ryan Hamilton, Greer Barnes, and Lynne Koplitz at the 8:00 show; Trevor Noah, Gregg Rogell, and Matt Lamp at the 9:30 show; and Dave Attell, Jon Fisch, and Greer Barnes at the 11:30 show, with three of the shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) and the 8:00 pm show at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Thursday

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Jon Glaser (star of Adult Swim’s Delocated; long-time writer/performer for Conan O’Brien), Jessi Klein (fresh, unique, deliciously organic comic who’s one of the best stand-ups in the country; head writer for Inside Amy Schumer,writer for Kroll Show, former staff writer for Saturday Night Live; Comedy Central, VH1, NBC, CNN, Adult Swim), Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, Chelsea Lately, writer for MTV’s Girl Code, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Dive Comedy and Stripped Stories), and maybe “a special guest” performing at this show for stand-up plus sketch at Brooklyn’s Splitty (415 Myrtle Avenue) hosted by Larry Murphy (brilliant voiceover actor for FOX’s Bob’s Burgers, Comedy Central’s Ugly Americans, Adult Swim’s Assy McGee and Home Movies, and numerous other shows) and/or Greg Johnson (Sirius XM): Myrtle Comedy: Jon Glaser, Jessi Klein, Larry Murphy, and More

[TOP PICK]8:00 pm ($15; no min.): Sasheer Zamata (instant star cast member of Saturday Night Live), Wyatt Cenac (former star correspondent for The Daily Show, Comedy Central hour-long special, Adult Swim, host of Night Train), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), and Aaron Berg (TV series 24 Hour Rental, documentary A Universal Language) performing at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Sasheer Zamata, Wyatt Cenac, Gary Gulman, Big Jay Oakerson, and More

8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, Michael Antonucci & Yoni Lotan Sharp perform a sketch-based one-act about buddies being on the road: License to Chill

…and in the second half of this double-bill, sketch about our national pastime: Baseball is America

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm-10:00 pm ($10 for the entire evening): The Magnet house improv groups The Boss and Hello Laser performing improv for an hour, followed at 9:00 pm by Story Story (improv that blurs the line between fact and fiction, using stories from the performers’ own lives to lead into a world of pretend and back again), at 10:00 pm by veteran improvisors making up scenes based on improvised monologues from Robert Weinstein at The Armando Diaz Experience, and finally at 11:00 by improv competition Inspirado (like UCBT’s Cage Match, but with a game-like challenge component) featuring musical improv group Aquarius vs. The Stank: The Magnet’s Night Out: The Magnet’s Night Out

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Jared Logan (rising star; Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing, CNN, TBS), Rob Cantrell (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, HBO, VHI, FX’s Totally Biased, documentary Metaphysical Graffiti, High Times), Phoebe Robinson (Comedy Central’s Broad City, MTV’s Girl Code, FX’s Totally Biased, Glamour Magazine), Liz Miele (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central, Damaged), Dave Rosinsky, Omar Shaukat, Gastor Almonte, and Andrew Coalson performing stand-up, plus music from Camille Theobald, all at Brooklyn’s Legion Bar (790 Metropolitan Avenue): AbeMixture

8:00 pm ($8) A “longform storytelling” show, providing a whopping 25 minutes per storyteller, which can be awesome or agonizing depending what any given storyteller delivers, with tonight’s guests Nisse Greenberg, Meliora Dockery, and Jefferson Bites performing at Brooklyn’s Local 61 (61 Bergen Street) hosted by Eli Reiter: Long Story Long

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Aparna Nancherla (delightfully wry, razor-sharp stand-up; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, former writer/performer for FX’s Totally Biased), Jabari Baraka Davis, Brandie Posey, and Corey Reppond performing stand-up at Poco Restaurant & Bar (33 Avenue B at 3rd Street) hosted by Sooyah Jun and/or Jawann Carmona: FTH Comedy

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced) joking about their culture—Jewish, African-American, Asian, geek, whatever—at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City : The Black Bar Mitzvah

8:30 pm ($5): Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central’s The Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award), Brooks Wheelan (cast member of Saturday Night Live), Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents), and more performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Adam Conover (College Humor, Olde English): Fresh Out

9:00 pm ($10): Improv spinning off the mythic TV series The Golden Girls at The PIT downstairs lounge: Four Broads and Cheesecake: Golden Girls Improv

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 9:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 260-2445 and mention HyReviews.com, but there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): Todd Barry (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, FX’s Louie, HBO’s Flight of the Conchords and Bored to Death, Adult Swim, co-star of feature film The Wrestler, star of delightful documentary The Crowd Work Tour), Marc Theobald, and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

9:30 pm ($5): Pete Davidson (MTV’s Guy Code), Streeter Seidell (Editor-in-Chief of College Humor; Jimmy Kimmel, MTV’s Pranked), LaKendra Tookes, and more performing stand-up or sketch at this monthly show hosted by a popular comedy site at UCB Chelsea: College Humor Live

[TOP PICK]10:00 pm ($15; no min.): Wyatt Cenac (former star correspondent for The Daily Show, Comedy Central hour-long special, Adult Swim, host of Night Train), Mark Normand (hilarious red-hot rising star; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, Inside Amy Schumer, Last Comic Standing, VH1′s Best Week Ever; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Mike Lawrence (nerd persona but razor-sharp mind has made this stand-up a rapidly rising star; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up, comedy album Sadamantium), and Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), performing at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Wyatt Cenac, Mark Normand, Gary Gulman, Mike Lawrence, and Big Jay Oakerson

[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Justin Williams & Akash Bhasin: Death Comedy Jam

10:30 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at this weekly stand-up show hosted by the brilliantly surreal and hilarious Joe Pera (for a very special one-minute set at Carolines, please click here), Charles Gould, and Dan Licata at the UCB East theatre: Dan + Joe + Charles’ Show

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Last week ace weekend improv team Grandma’s Ashes easily tossed aside team Side Piece, winning 99-29. Tonight the reining champion, with six wins in a row, faces indie improv troupe Astronomy Club, competing for your laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea in the raucous Cage Match

Thursday Open Mics & Jams

5:00 pm ($5): Two-hour open-mic for 20 stand-ups performing for 5 minutes each, with sign-up online here, at the Stand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): Stand Up NY Open Mic

[FREE] 5:30 pm: All-gal open mic at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”) hosted by the spectacular Anna Drezen & Sue Smith: Open Michelle: Ladies Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up with comics’ names drawn from a bucket and each chosen receiving 2 minutes—and if that goes well, maybe a hug (but not actual puppies)—at The Creek’s upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Ross Parsons & Trey Galyon: Free Puppies

6:00 pm ($5): Hour-long open mic stand-up providing 5 minutes per comic. Check-in is at 5:45 at the new Comedians Club of New York (158 West 72nd Street), which was formerly The Triad Theatre: Comedians Club Open Mic

6:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, running 2 1/2 hours. Arrive 30 minutes before the show to get on the signup sheet. This is a fine opportunity to perform at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club Open Mic

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Storyteller Andy Ross (host of Real Characters) is the booked guest at this weekly open mic that provides 5 minutes for each audience member whose name is pulled out of a bucket to perform a true story, sketch, or characters at Brooklyn’s Over the Eight (594 Union Ave) hosted by JiJi Lee: Split Personality Open Mic Storytelling & Sketch

7:00 pm ($2, which includes a free beer or water): Open mic stand-up providing a whopping 10 minutes per comic. Email PhoningItInMic@gmail.com with subject line Phoning Thursday to sign up; or take a chance at lottery sign-up live between 6:45 and 7:45 at Brit Pack Studios (153 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor) hosted by Ian Fidance: Comics Phoning It In

[FREE] 7:00 pm: In this free Magnet show, audience members (signing in at 6:00) can join in with improv group The Boss to make up scenes on the spot: Magnet Mixer

9:30 pm (free for audience members, $5 or 1 drink min. for stand-ups wanting to perform): Open mic stand-up providing 7 minutes per comic (and a free recording of your set!), with order determined raffle-style. Sign up by emailing info@oldmanhustle.com or calling (212) 253-7747, or just walk in and supply your name, to perform at the Old Man Hustle Bar (39 Essex Street) hosted by Solomon Chehebar: Peep Show Comedy Open Mic

[FREE] 11:00 pm: An open-mic show that’s first come, first serve, with each comic getting 3-5 minutes on stage at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Josh Alba: Mic and Cheese

[FREE] 11:00 pm: An open stage for indie improv groups—and if you’re not in a group, that’s also fine, you’ll simply be added to one—at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Darcy Burke & Donna Lobello: New Team Lunacy

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$20)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

The Creek and the Cave
(Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all shows free)

This Theater
(154 West 29th Street; new venue that, at its best, features shows comparable to UCB & PIT; free-$12)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
(117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.)

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Comic Strip Live
(1568 Second Avenue, off 81st; Upper East Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Stand Up NY
(236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; Upper West Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Laughing Devil
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club, with MST3K-style movie night on Thursdays; 2-drink min.)

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible Best New York Comedy. He is literally the only person in NYC providing daily summaries of what’s happening comedy-wise. It must be exhausting keeping that monster of a website alive…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.


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