NYC Top Comedy Choices for Tuesday 7/8/14

July 8, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

TV Alert: Joan Rivers is on David Letterman;
Billy Eichner is on Conan O’Brien

Vanessa Bayer

Vanessa Bayer performs at Seth Herzog’s Sweet

Joe Pera

…and Joe Pera hosts a comedy video mini-fest with Caroline Creaghead at Brooklyn’s Littlefield

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, seven of The Magnet’s improv groups make up musicals based on audience suggestion, creating epic stories on the spot using song and dance: Magnet Musical Megawatt

[TOP PICK]7:00 pm ($10): “With awesome shows like Orange is the New Black and House of Cards among the many things to stream online these days, it’s easy to forget how much absolute shit there is available on Netflix. Join frenemies Lucas Hazlett (MTV, Marvel Comics) and Erick Hellwig (MTV, NatGeo) as they sit down with a real Hollywood insider and talk mad shit about a shitty movie on Netflix in real time” at The PIT downstairs lounge: Shittin’ on FLIX

[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

[$] 7:00 pm ($12): Three improv teams make up scenes as slacker characters at The PIT upstairs theatre: Slackers

7:30 pm-9:15 pm ($5): Long form improv known as The Harold from UCB Chelsea house groups Smalls, Higgins, 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 Judah Friedlander, Hannibal Buress, Gary Gulman, Gregg Rogell, and Dov Davidoff at the 9:30 show; and Dave Attell, Todd Barry, Ryan Hamilton, and Nick Griffin 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] 8:00 pm ($5 at the door or $6.49 online): Caroline Creaghead and brilliant stand-up & filmmaker Joe Pera host a show of comedy shorts by such talents as Kate Berlant and Jim Tews at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street): Caroline’s & Joe’s Video Show

[TOP PICK] 8:00 ($5): Nikki Glaser (former co-star of MTV’s The Nikki and Sara Show; Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Last Comic Sanding, Comedy Central Half Hour; podcast You Had to Be There), John Milhiser (SNL), and Bryan Tucker (SNL) performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Katie Kester: The Later Show

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($10 online using discount code BUSINESS; no min.): Jared Logan (rising star; Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever, CNN, TBS), Michelle Wolf (staff writer for Seth Meyers; MTV’s Girl Code, IFC), Alex Koll (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central), Brooks Whelan (cast member of Saturday Night Live), Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon; host of If You Bring It), Joe Zimmerman, and Alison Leiby performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Jared Logan, Michelle Wolf, Brooks Whelan, and More

8:00 pm ($10): A house sketch troupe performs at The PIT upstairs theatre: National Scandal

8:00 pm ($8): Wonderful comics Katie Hartman (Skinny Bitch Jesus Meeting), Girls with Brown Hair, and Carmen Angelica perform and drink wine at This Theater (154 West 29th Street, 2nd Floor): Buzz Off Lucille

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups and musicians (not announced) perform in a party-like atmosphere at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Justin Peele: Party & Bullshit

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Selena Coppock, Brandon Scott Wolf, Andy Farnsworth, Casey Balsham, Eliana Horeczko, Liz Magee, and Brock Wilbur performing stand-up 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: NYC stand-ups Miguel Dalmau, Henry Cruz, Charles McBee, Jackie Cheng, Josh Alba, Pudge Fernandez, and Colin Anton Samuel performing at Queens’ Maspeth Ale House (64-14 Grand Avenue) hosted by Liana S. Afuni: Comedy Night in Queens

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:30 pm (reserve your free spots by clicking here): Michael Che (instant star correspondent for The Daily Show; former staff writer for Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Comedy Central, VH1), 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), Sabrina Jalees (delightful dynamo stand-up; Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever, MTV’s Failosophy), Gary Vider (hilarious deadpan stand-up; for great Conan O’Brien set, please click here; for more jokes, please click here), Brooks Wheelan (cast member of Saturday Night Live), Matt Ruby (MTV; sharp co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here, award-winning blog Sandpaper Suit), Tyler Fischer, Brandie Posey, 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] 9:00 pm ($7): Vanessa Bayer (cast member of Saturday Night Live), 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), Matt Goldich (staff writer for Seth Meyers; Comedy Central, VH1), 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), and more performing stand-up at The Slipper Room (167 Orchard Street) hosted by Seth Herzog (Jimmy Fallon long-time staff comic, Comedy Central, VH1, co-host of Nat Geo’s Duck Quakes Don’t Echo): Sweet

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Roger Hailes (MTV, Comedy Central), Casey James Salengo, Abigoliah Schamaun, and Garrett Clark performing stand-up at this weekly show at Brooklyn’s The Alligator Lounge (600 Metropolitan Avenue) produced by Sean Donnelly, Kevin McCaffrey, Robert Dean, Steve O’Brien, and/or Sachi Ezura, and hosted tonight by Sachi Ezura…celebrating her birthday tomorrow!: Comedy at Alligator Lounge

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

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): “People from all across America have submitted ideas for the wackiest and most expensive game shows on earth. At this showcase we’ll try out three lucky shows with the help and participation of our gracious live audience. After we’ve attempted to recreate all three, audience members get the chance to vote on which idea gets to go straight to TV (not really)” at UCB East hosted by the fabulous Jo Firestone (also host of Punderdome 3000 and many, many other shows): The Incredible Game Show Showcase

9:30 pm ($8): Storytellers Nhu An Do (Moth GrandSlam champion), Mark Katz (Time Magazine), and Catie Lazarus (host of Employee of the Month) watch a clip from The Facts of LIfe and then tell tales about how they were inspired by it way back when at This Theater (154 West 29th Street, 2nd Floor) hosted by Robin Gelfenbien & Danny Artese: A Very Special Episode

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5; no min.): This super-affordable weekly stand-up club show tonight features Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), 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), Ari Shaffir (Conan O’Brien, HBO’s Down and Dirty, Comedy Central, National Lampoon, hour-long set Passive Aggressive), Gary Vider (hilarious deadpan stand-up; for great Conan O’Brien set, please click here; for more jokes, please click here), and Danny Palmer performing at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): $5 Funnies: Judah Friedlander, Mark Normand, Ari Shaffir, and More

[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: NYC stand-ups (not announced) each tell precisely three jokes at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Seth Cockfield: Three Joke Mafia

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Brooke Van Poppelen (brilliant writer, stand-up, and storyteller; writer and/or producer for MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Failosophy, and Nikki & Sara Show; trutV, TLC, co- host of Dive Comedy), Anna Drezen (talented character comic blending words and movement; one-woman show Spooky Jerks), Dan Licata, and Tynan DeLong performing stand-up for this free weekly show at Brooklyn’s Over the Eight (594 Union Ave) hosted by Bret Davis: The Tuesday Special

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 guest co-host Ryan Hernandez: 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 The Jezebelles: 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: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…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 Wednesday 8/14/13

August 14, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For FringeNYC 2013 coverage, updated daily, please click here.

Kate McKinnon and Vanessa Bayer

UCB Chelsea’s the place to be tonight, with Saturday Night Live stars Kate McKinnon & Vanessa Bayer performing at Broad City Live…

Amy Heidt

…Amy Heidt debuting one-woman show A Problem Like Maria…

Zach Woods and Neil Casey

…and Zach Woods & Neil Casey doing duo improv as Casey & Woods

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

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): Two ace improvisors, Neil Casey (writer for SNL) and Zach Woods (cast member of The Office), make up duo scenes at the UCB Chelsea theatre: Casey & Woods

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: One of the finest stand-ups in the world, Ted Alexandro (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, two Comedy Central Presents half-hour specials; frequently opens for Louis C.K.), tries out new material every night this week at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Week At the Creek: Ted Alexandro

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

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

7:00 pm ($5): Jake Hart, Sue Smith, Justin Akin, and Geoff Grimwood are panelists for this game 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

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm show ($10.35 in advance online, $15 at the door; price includes free slices of homemade ice cream cakes!): Star storyteller Tom Shillue (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents, 2011 ECNY Award for Best Storyteller, host of Funny Story, albums Better Stronger Faster and Big Room; currently releasing a new storytelling album each month), Larry Smith (“the real Larry Bloom from Orange is the New Black“), Tara Clancy (New York Times Magazine, Moth GrandSlam Champion), and more tell tales to celebrate this show’s Second Year Anniversay at the Le Poisson Rouge’s The Gallery (158 Bleecker Street) hosted by Robin Gelfenbien (storyteller and singer/songwriter; VH1, AMC, Sirius Radio, acclaimed one-woman show at FringeNYC) and that includes free ice cream cakes made by Robin herself: Yum’s the Word

7:30 pm ($5): Expanding the UCB longform improv showcased on Harold Night is this weekly show at UCB East which tonight features groups Hotspur and Never Never: Lloyd Night

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($10 plus 2-item food/drink min.): An evening with Nick DiPaolo (star stand-up, with numerous appearances on David Letterman, Jay Leno, Louie; Emmy-nominated comedy writer, talk show host), and maybe one or two of his stand-up friends, at the Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Nick DiPaolo

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, the wonderful Amy Heidt comes back to us from LA to perform a new one-woman show about “a community theater production of The Sound of Music:” A Problem Like Maria

…and in the other half of this double-bill, Jim Santangeli and Nate Smith try to determine Who’s More Awesome?

[FREE] 8:00 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] 9:00 pm ($5): Superb improvisors—and actual brothers—Will Hines and Kevin Hines make use of their intimate knowledge of each other to gracefully invent scenes (hopefully without any squabbling) at UCB East performing as duo The Brothers Hines

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Saturday Night Live stars Kate McKinnon, Vanessa Bayer, and Chris Kelly join Abbi Jacobson & Ilana Glazer (Broad City) at UCB Chelsea for this “delicately crafted hour of fun.” Kate, missed you twice this month; but tonight, Fringe notwithstanding, hope to finally see you at Broad City Live

9:30 pm ($5): “Jonathan Blank and Samara Doucette say what everyone else thinks on dates, but never says; so join them and guest comedians as they divulge all of their wildest and most embarrassing dating stories. This monthly storytelling show contains the truth and nothing but the truth, but most of the stories are more surreal than if David Lynch directed romantic comedies. Everything from wild hookups to emotional breakups are on the table.” Tonight’s storytelling guests (not announced) perform at The PIT downstairs lounge: This is Awkward: True Stories of of Love, Lust, and Lubrication

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): The instructors of UCB’s classes include some of the finest improvisors in the country. In this weekly show a bunch of them get on stage at UCB East, along with hosts Betsy Stover and Ari Voukydis: Hot for Teacher: The UCB Faculty Show

[FREE] 10:00: NYC stand-ups Sean Donnelly, Jaqi Furback, Josh Carter, Doogie Horner, and John F. O’Donnell performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City as part of the Reddit.com online community, hosted by Adam Lash (HBO, Showtime, The Daily Show) and/or Nathan Anderson (Uncoolio): /r/standup

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: The wonderful Sasheer Zamata (rapidly rising star; Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer, MTV’s Hey Girl, FX’s Totally Biased, Apple Computer commercials; improv groups Doppelganger and Bucky) and Charla Lauriston host as many as a dozen guests packed into 75 minutes performing stand-up, improv, sketch, and occasionally acts that defy categorization. The level of talent can vary wildly, but for some (like me), that’s part of the laid-back fun; plus Sasheer is going to be a huge star, so catch her in this intimate setting while you can. (Tonight’s scheduled guests include Streeter Seidell; for the complete list, please click here.) Come support the experimentation, and periodic magical surprises, that this uniquely organic rollercoaster of a weekly show at UCB Chelsea makes possible—and don’t forget to toss $1 in the bucket on your way out: School Night

[TOP PICK] [$] 11:30 pm ($10 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Uncensored stand-up from Dave Attell (one of the most respected stand-ups in the biz; star of Showtime’s Dave’s Old Porn and Comedy Central’s Insomniac; HBO, David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents), Vic Henley (David Letterman, Comedy Central Presents), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Wil Sylvince (Comedy Central, BET’s Comic View), and Andrew Schulz (MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Failosophy) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua (HBO’s Bad Boys of Comedy, Comedy Central): The Nasty Show: Dave Attell, Vic Henley, Big Jay Oakerson, and More

 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] 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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up providing 5 minutes per comic at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Benel Germosen: Cracking It

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

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

[ALMOST FREE] 10:30 pm ($1): Biweekly open-mic stand-up, with each comic getting an unusually long 6-10 minutes, at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by James III & Jamie LeeLo: Hump Day

[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 opportunity to perform on the stage of UCB East with improv veterans, hosted by UCBT Harold Night house group Bucky and DJ Cipha Sounds: The Improv Jam

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Your chance to perform on stage with experienced improvisors at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Lucas Hazlett: Improdome

[FREE] 11:30: Sign up at 11:00 pm for the opportunity to make up scenes at The Magnet with group Bloomer: 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-$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.)

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 7/31/13

July 31, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Check out Myq Kaplan’s stand-up album Meat Robot

Rebecca Vigil

Powerhouse musical improvisor Rebecca Vigil belts out made-up songs, with stand-up from Gary Gulman, at The Vigilante…

Vanessa Bayer

…and Saturday Night Live’s Vanessa Bayer is among the improvisors at tonight’s edition of Mike Birbiglia’s Dream

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] 6:00 pm: PIT founder Ali Farahnakian talks and answers questions for 44 minutes at The PIT upstairs theatre: Ali’s Hour (Actually 44 Minutes)

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): Mike Birbiglia’s Dream is both a reference to Mike’s hit play & film Sleepwalk With Me, and to the group of improvisors he’s gathered being a “dream team” for making up scenes springboarding off his stories. Tonight at UCB Chelsea Mike spins tales for SNL’s Vanessa Bayer, Andy Bryant, Christina Gausas, Tami Sagher, and Chelsea Clarke: Mike Birbiglia’s Dream

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

7:00 pm ($5): A one-woman show by Leila Ben-Abdallah about a little girl named Leticia “who may get a new mommy every few years, but she only turns five once! Leticia will be shaking Manhattans all night, Uncle Habib will be making up creation myths, and Daddy will try his hardest to be there. Come for the gluten free snacks, stay for musical numbers by Iowa State University’s Corn Queen 1979 (3rd runner up)” at The PIT downstairs lounge, directed by Sarah Nowak: Leticia’s Fifth Birthday Party

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

7:30 pm ($5): Expanding the UCB longform improv showcased on Harold Night is this weekly show at UCB East which tonight features groups Detroit and Hotspur: Lloyd Night

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] [FREE] 8:00 pm (FREE online using discount code GABE; no min.): Ten NYC stand-ups—including such talents as Ryan Hamilton—perform in the hope of getting the nod to appear on the upcoming Comedy Central show Stand Up Revolution at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Comedy Central Auditions with Ryan Hamilton and More

[TOP PICK] 8:00 ($5): Renowned comedy chameleon and sketch comic Livia Scott (Conan O’Brien, Law & Order, VH1, feature film National Lampoon’s Dirty Movie) spearheads this multimedia sketch comedy show that tonight includes Jason Saenz and Aaron Glaser at the UCB Chelsea theatre: The Livia Scott Sketch Program

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Cammi Climaco & David Crabb host this monthly storytelling show, with tonight’s guests Caitlin Brodnick, Tara Clancy, Diana Spechler, Rod J. Sayegh, and more telling tales at the Happy Ending Lounge (302 Broome Street, between Eldridge and Forsythe): Ask Me Stories

8:00 pm ($5): The Reformed Whores (raunchy comedic singing duo Marie Cecile Anderson & Katy Frame; new album Ladies Don’t Spit), Tim Racine (improv group Grounds for Divorce), and sketch comedy group Black Magic Lab celebrate the new royal baby with an obsolete show title at The PIT downstairs lounge: The Royal Fetus Variety Show

[FREE] 8:00 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

9:00 pm ($5): Expanding the UCB longform improv showcased on Harold Night is this weekly show at UCB East—tonight with this bonus edition (on top of the standard 7:30 show) featuring groups Never Never and First Lady: Lloyd Night

9:30 pm ($5): Greg Barris (host of Heart of Darkness) performs stand-up and discusses issues with tonight’s guest Douglas Rushkoff Ph.D. at the UCB Chelsea theatre: Greg Barris: Mind Warriors

9:30 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups Nick Turner, Ashley Brooke Roberts, Ryan Beck, and Emma Willman perform at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by David Rosen: Nice Time

[FREE] 10:00 ($5): NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City as part of the Reddit.com online community, hosted by Adam Lash (HBO, Showtime, The Daily Show) and/or Nathan Anderson (Uncoolio): /r/standup

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: The wonderful Sasheer Zamata (rising star; Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer, MTV’s Hey Girl, FX’s Totally Biased, Apple Computer commercials; improv groups Doppelganger and Bucky) and Charla Lauriston host as many as a dozen guests packed into 75 minutes performing stand-up, improv, sketch, and occasionally acts that defy categorization. The level of talent can vary wildly, but for some (like me), that’s part of the laid-back fun; plus Sasheer is going to be a huge star, so catch her in this intimate setting while you can. (Tonight’s scheduled guests include Megan Maes and Gavin Speiller’s Babies; for the complete list, please click here.) Come support the experimentation, and periodic magical surprises, that this uniquely organic rollercoaster of a weekly show at UCB Chelsea makes possible—and don’t forget to toss $1 in the bucket on your way out: School Night

[TOP PICK] 11:30 pm ($5 plus 2-drink min): “Where there is a stage and a piano, she will be there. Where there are strangers with embarrassing stories, she will be there. Where there is a group of people willing to sit and watch someone make up songs, she will be there. A one-woman musical improv journey through the lives of the audience, backed up by an improv band. You tell the story, Rebecca Vigil sings the soundtrack”—quite beautifully, in fact, as Rebecca is not only a sharp improvisor but a powerhouse singer— and tonight she’s joined by stand-up Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special) at 54 Below’s The Studio (254 West 54th Street, between Eighth Avenue & Broadway): The Vigilante, plus Gary Gulman

[$] 11:30 pm ($10 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Uncensored stand-up from Kurt Metzger (staff writer for Inside Amy Schumer; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Nikki Glaser (co-star of MTV’s The Nikki and Sara Show; Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central Half Hour; podcast You Had to Be There), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Andrew Schulz (MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Failosophy), and Ardie Fuqua (HBO’s Bad Boys of Comedy, Comedy Central) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam): The Nasty Show: Kurt Metzger, Nikki Glaser, Big Jay Oakerson, and More

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] 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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up providing 5 minutes per comic at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Benel Germosen: Cracking It

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

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] 10:30 pm: Your opportunity to get on stage for an improv jam at UCB East hosted by master DJ Cipha Sounds: Hot for Teacher: Student Lounge

[ALMOST FREE] 10:30 pm ($1): Biweekly open-mic stand-up, with each comic getting an unusually long 6-10 minutes, at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by James III & Jamie LeeLo: Hump Day

[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 Lucas Hazlett: Improdome

[FREE] 11:30: Sign up at 11:00 pm for the opportunity to make up scenes at The Magnet with group Call Tokyo: 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-$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.)

 From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 11/18/12

November 18, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

My favorite fast food place, Tuck Shop, got hit hard by Sandy. Please check out its amazing meat & veggie mini-pies; the 68 East 1st Street store is near UCB East and open very late…and is run by a fiery Aussie redhead who’s a delight.

John Hodgman and Colin Quinn
John Hodgman headlines at Pretty Good Friends; Colin Quinn stars in free one-man show Unconstitutional…
John Mulaney and Vanessa Bayer
…and Saturday Night Live stars, including John Mulaney and Vanessa Bayer, raise funds at Comic Strip Live

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] 2:00 pm doors, 2:15ish show ($8): Select clips of Muppets in tribute to the late Jerry Nelson, who over six decades performed hundreds of characters including The Count, Herry Monster, Camilla the Chicken, Kermit’s nephew Robin, and Gobo Fraggle, screened at Brooklyn’s Union Hall, plus Muppet-themed drink specials, cool giveaways, sing-along fun, and more: The Muppet Vault: The Man of a Thousand Muppets

[TOP PICK] [$] 3:00 pm ($65): This isn’t pure comedy, but an enchanting hodgepodge of original tall tales fueled by laughs. The 2-hour play from the wonderful guys of PigPen blends shadow puppetry, songs, inventive staging, and more to create living dreams. For my review of PigPen’s two previous shows at FringeNYC, please click here and here. This newest work is their most ambitious, and that sometimes results in the story feeling too slow or padded; but it also yields a deeper emotional payoff. And even though not all the bits hit the mark, so many of them do that you’re likely to feel satisfied—and missing PigPen’s world after the show is over. The production is at The Gym at Judson (243 Thompson Street) in the West Village: The Old Man and the Moon

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early walk-in open-mic stand-up show at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Face-Plant Comedy Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: A smorgasbord of of stand-up, comedic music, comedic dance, sketch, and more at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Mishmash Variety Hour (and a Half)

 6:30 pm ($5): Two shows audition for a spot on The Magnet schedule: A Child’s Garden of Maritime Disasters and The Jen Sanders’ Show

[FREE] 6:30 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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: TV & Broadway stand-up star Colin Quinn performs a brand new show exploring US history “from the Founding Fathers to the Kardashians” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Unconstitutional with Colin Quinn

7:00 pm ($8): An all-gal sketch troupe performs “prank calls, girl talk, Bloody Mary, makeovers, light to moderate bulimia, games, murder, gossip, giggles, and some completely natural and healthy experimentation” at The PIT upstairs theatre: Doctors Quinn Medicine Women’s Super Cute Sleepover

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm ($20): The return of one of the funniest comedies—and finest comedic ensembles—to grace New York, and what ended up as the very best show of this year’s FringeNYC Festival, playing at the Soho Playhouse’s upstairs theatre. Please read my review by clicking here, and then take advantage of this opportunity to see the Chicago-based 5 Lesbians Eating a Quiche

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

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm ($38.25 & 2-drink min.) An Iranian-American stand-up (for a sample set, please click here) who’s a founding member of the Axis of Evil Comedy Tour that featured top Middle Eastern-American comics, and an actor who’s performed on ABC’ s Better off Ted and Knights of Prosperity, FOX’ s Life on a Stick, HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, NBC’s The West Wing and ER, and many other shows & feature films, headlining tonight through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Maz Jobrani

7:30 pm ($5): Improv troupes not affiliated with any comedy school compete at UCB East for audience laughs and votes—and the privilege to go on to perform at the primary Cage Match show at UCB Chelsea—in this show hosted by the delightful Amey Goerlich & R an Karels (Krompf): Indie Cage Match

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($7): John Hodgman (The Daily Show, PC vs. Mac commercials, bestselling author), Dan St. Germain (quick-witted & enormously likeable rising star; Jimmy Fallon, The Electric Company, MTV, VH1), Rob Cantrell (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, VHI, documentary Metaphysical Graffiti, High Times), and more performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Union Hall guest-hosted tonight by Nick Turner: Pretty Good Friends

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:30 pm ($50, plus 2-drink min. or $20 unlimited nonalcoholic drinks): Cast members and writers of Saturday Night LIve—John Mulaney (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; writer/performer for Saturday Night Live; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, one hour special & CD/DVD New in Town, VH1’s Best Week Ever; for John’s great bit on Weekend Update, please click here), Colin Jost (Head Writer of SNL), Jay Pharoah, Vanessa Bayer, Tim Robinson, and Mike O’Brien—plus 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 stand-up to raise funds for Hurricane Sandy relief at the Comic Strip Live Comedy Club (1568 2nd Avenue off 81st Street): Saturday Night Live Cast plus 30 Rock’s Judah Friedlander

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Maddog Mattern (to see Maddog handle a heckler, please click here), Roger Hailes (Chappelle’s Show, VH1, MTV; writer for FUSE’s A Different Spin with Mark Hoppus), Jordan Carlos (The Colbert Report, MTV, VH1), Nimesh Patel, Liam McEneany, Jude Destin, Upa, and Steve Carr performing stand-up for this monthly show at Brooklyn’s Way Station (683 Washington Avenue) hosted by Jordon Ferber and Sarah Shanok: I Got a Bad Feeling About This

8:00 pm ($5): A mini-play at The Magnet in which Robert Weinstein and friends present a horror/comedy: Smooching & Slashing: Anatomy of a First Kiss

8:00 pm ($8): Three improv troupes make up scenes at The PIT upstairs theatre: Martha, Kissing Disease, and Flip Flops and Socks

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Sketch, improv, and more at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City from comedy troupe Froduce

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Sean Patton (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; killer sets on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central, VH1, feature film Wifed Out; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Louis Katz (Jimmy Fallon, HBO, Comedy Central Presents), Seth Herzog (staff comic for Jimmy Fallon; 30 Rock, Comedy Central, CBS, VH1, film actor; host of Sweet), Al Jackson, Leonard Robinson, David Huntsberger, and more performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Knitting Factory (361 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by the wonderful Hannibal Buress (staff writer for 30 Rock, Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Louie, The Eric Andre Show; one-hour Comedy Central special Animal Furnace): Comedy Night

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 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): Christian Finnegan (Conan O’Brien, co-star of TBS’ Are We There Yet?; three Comedy Central specials; MSNBC, VH1’s Best Week Ever, Chappelle’s Show, The Today Show), Dean Edwards (Saturday Night Live, MTV’s Celebrity Deathmatch, HBO’s The Sopranos, feature film Scared Shrekless), Andrew Schulz (MTV 2’s Guy Code), and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Jermaine Fowler (FOX’s new In Living Color, Adult Swim’s The Eric Andre Show), Brent Sullivan (Comedy Central; for video about crying while reading The Giving Tree, please click here), Sean Donnelly (Comedy Central; host of many shows), Michelle Wolf (IFC’s Bunk), and more performing at RG Daniels’ free weekly show at the L’asso East Village lounge (107 First Avenue, off 7th Street): Sunday Night Stand-Up

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Abigoliah Schamaun, Mike Cody, Sam Morrill, and Diana Da Luna performing in the East Village’s Beauty Bar for this free weekly show hosted by Adam Sokol, Brad Austin, and/or Nate Fridson: Comedy at the Beauty Bar

9:00 pm ($5): Improv veterans Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, and Phillip Jackson hosting & performing in a show at UCB East with guest improvisors: Improv Nerds

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): All-gal storytelling show of “true tales with feelings; so many feelings…,” tonight starring Elna Baker (genius storyteller, and bestselling author of the comedic book The New York Regional Mormon Singles Halloween Dance; writer for Glamour, Elle; NPR’s This American Life; co-host of red-hot The Talent Show; for sample tales, please click here), Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, MTV, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Dive comedy and Stripped Stories), and Anna Roisman at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Caitlin Brodnick and Lisa Kleinman: Shut Up: An All-Female Storytelling Show

9:30 pm ($5): Magnet sketch comedy teams Jacktown and Risky Bottom try out new material at this show with the on-the-nose title Magnet Sketch Teams

9:30 pm ($1): Open-mic stand-up, with four minutes per comic, at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Molly Austin & Mike Brown: Vicious Cycle

10:00 pm ($5): 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

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Tuesday 1/24/12

January 24, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For my favorite stand-up jokes, please click here.

Vanessa Bayer

Saturday Night Live's Vanessa Bayer performs at Sweet...

Bigfoot

..and six comedic tales of "The Wilderness" are spun at Brooklyn's The Story Collider

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

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

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Six stories about The WIlderness from Robin Gelfenbein, Kerri Doherty, Hallie Haglund, David Gelles, Maija Miemisto, and Ari Daniel Shapiro performing at Brooklyn’sUnion Hall hosted by Erin Barker & Ben Lillie: The Story Collider

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): The editors of The Onion—Joe Garden, Todd Hanson, and Baratunde Thurston—plus Kurt Braunohler (Comedy Central; creator & host of IFC game show Bunk; co-creator & co-star of UK TV series Penelope: Princess of Pets; co-host of Hot Tub Variety; triple 2011 ECNY Award winner), and Kara Klenk (host of If You Build It) performing at Lolita Bar hosted by Liam McEneaney: Tell Your Friends

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Comic book industry pros Danny Fingeroth (The Stan Lee Universe) and Sam Ball (Joann Sfar Draws From Memory) joining super-hosts Alex Zalben, Justin Tyler, and Pete LePage in a lively & hilarious discussion about four-color pop culture at The PIT downstairs lounge: Comic Book Club

8:00 pm ($5): Front Page Films (hilarious shorts by Pete Holmes, Matt McCarthy and Oren Brimer), Jon Friedman (Jimmy Fallon, The Rejection Show), Roger Hailes (Chappelle’s Show, VH1, MTV; writer for FUSE’s A Different Spin with Mark Hoppus), and musical guest Matthew Hemerlein performing at UCB East for a comedy variety show produced by Sara Schaefer & Scott Moran: Hot Dang

[$] 8:00 pm ($20): Storyteller Martin Dockery (The Moth, The Liar Show; acclaimed as “fantastic” byThe New York Times) performing a one-man show about LSD—or, as Martin describes it, “a comic monologue about peddling chemical truths”—at the Barrow Street Theatre (27 Barrow Street, just one block from the #1 subway’s Christopher Street stop): The Bike Trip

8:00 pm-Midnight ($5): Four full hours of improv at UCB Chelsea for only five bucks—tonight featuring UCBT house troupes Mr. Crime, Very Good Kiss, Creature, Grandma’s Ashes, and Deckard—and at 11:00 pm advanced improv students perform scenes in which a very small occurrence can produce unpredictable and sometimes explosive results—all at Harold Night

8:00 pm ($5): This one-woman show at The PIT upstairs theatre “follows Leanne’s journey from Waukegan, Illinois to Vegas, baby! Doesn’t every woman want to move to Vegas, sell guns, and get married a few times? It would be completely made up if it weren’t totally true:” Lady Luck is a Whore

[FREE] 8:00 pm: This weekly show features “a swarthy selection of fine stand-up comics and mildly entertaining recurring segments” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre, hosted by Jim Tews & Brendan Eyre: Chest Hair

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

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): Vanessa Bayer (cast member of Saturday Night Live), Anthony Atamanuik (30 Rock, Conan O’Brien, Huffington Post, Death by Roo Roo, The Nights of Our Lives, The Tony and Johnny Show), Eric Ledgin (staff writer/performer for Jimmy Fallon), and more performing atElla (9 Avenue A) hosted by Seth Herzog (Jimmy Fallon, 30 Rock, VH1): Sweet

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm (no cover, one drink min.): Mark Normand (hilarious stand-up; Last Comic Standing; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), John Roy, Ashley Brooke, Roberts Zach Sims, Emily Heller, and Kristine Levine performing stand-up on tonight’s topic of Hell for this new weekly show at Sidewalk NYC (94 Avenue A) hosted by Josh Gondelman & George Gordon: The Afterlife

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Stand-up and sketch at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre, typically hosted by sketch troupes Savage Animal and/or Jerk Practice: Savage Animal

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): Two of the most brilliant, fearless, and innovative comics in the biz, John Gemberling (Death by Roo Roo, Adult Swim, Comedy Central) and Anthony Atamanuik (Death by Roo Roo, 30 Rock, Conan O’Brien, Huffington Post, The Nights of Our Lives), team up to create their special dark version of a comedy variety show at UCB East. Tonight’s guests are Adira Amram (fresh, hilarious rising star singer/songwriter; winner of the 2011 ECNY Award for Best Musical Act), Dan St. Germain (quick-witted & enormously likeable rising star; Jimmy Fallon, MTV, VH1), and Violet Krumbein (30 Rock, hilarious sketch comic): The Tony and Johnny Show

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($15 & 2-drink min.) Al Madrigal, Robert Kelly, Godfrey, and hosts Joe DeRosa & Jared Logan performing stand-up at the Gotham Comedy Club: ComedyJuice

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

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

[FREE] 11:30 pm: Open-mic stand-up at UCB East hosted by Boris Khaykin, John Trowbridge, and/or Katie East: Tuesday Night Open Mic

 For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

New Year, Healthier You: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 9/8/11

September 8, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

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

Adam Wade and Vanessa Bayer

Stellar storyteller Adam Wade (Big Heart), SNL jewel Vanessa Bayer (Totally J/K)...

Kate McKinnon on Ice

...and your last chance to see Kate McKinnon perform one of the best shows of the year: "Kate McKinnon on Ice"

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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: New weekly open-mic storytelling show, with each performer given a whopping eight minutes to captivate & impress, at the new UCBeast (Upright Citizens Brigade East Village Theatre at 155 East 3rd Street, off Avenue A) hosted by John Flynn: Oh, Hey Guys!

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

[FREE] 6:30 pm: In this free show, audience members (signing in at 6:00) can join in with veteran improv talents to make up scenes on the spot: Magnet Mixer

7:00 pm ($5): A one-woman show by Kristen Lucas about “a small town in Oklahoma and all its infamous stereotypes, Including but not limited to Pecos Bill, men with small genital syndrome, and a fat lady stuck on her toilet seat:” Oklahoma! A Tornado Tour Through a Tiny Town

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5): New one-hour show featuring “a compilation of my favorite stories and home videos that I’ve been working on for the past two years” from storytelling giant Adam Wade (two-time Moth GrandSlam Storytelling Champion (2006 & 2009) and record-breaking 17-time StorySlam Champion; The New York Times Magazine; host of hilarious monthly storytelling extravaganzas Real Tales of College and The Adam Wade show; for Adam’s award-winning tale of being an NBC page on Conan O’Brien, please click here) happening every other Thursday at the new UCBT-East (Upright Citizens Brigade East Village Theatre at 155 East 3rd Street, off Avenue A): Adam Wade’s Big Heart

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($7): A rotating cast of veteran improvisors make up scenes based on the improvised monologues of the co-owner of the Magnet Theatre: The Armando Diaz Experience

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Sketch comedy genius Kate McKinnon concluding the run of her smash one-woman show, which features “Singing! Dancing! Ice Skating! Hoarders! Conjoined Twins! Temple Grandin!” This inventive, dynamic production is among the very best to grace the UCBT stage this year. (And if you don’t want to take my word alone, check out Jane Borden’s Time Out New York review.) Kate is the most precious of diamonds in our NYC comedy community; come see why in Kate McKinnon on Ice 

…and in the other half of this double-bill, a mini-play that pleased the college-age audience I saw it with, but that I wish wasn’t written to be so calculating and by-the-numbers (e.g., the ending was dead obvious within the first few minutes)…but is probably worth seeing if only for the genuinely fresh & funny tailor scene: Brad Sacks Gets a Handjob

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: An all-musical comedy night with rock god Dave Hill (one of the most original and hilariously sharp alternative comics in the country; HBO, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, NPR, star of The King of Miami, band Diamondsnake, champion rapper; The New York Times, The Huffington Post, The Dave Hill Explosion), rock siren Jessica Delfino (enjoys singing songs about her vagina, as demonstrated by her CD Dirty Folk Rock; created the hilarious and wildly popular YouTube animated short film I Wanna Be Famous; has a cool blog; to get a feel for Jessica’s amazing range and talent, please click here), Carolyn Castiglia (Last Comic Standing, VH1; wrote a new song with Ben Lerman just for this show), and Dan Licata performing at The Creek’s upstairstheatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Now That’s What I Call Musical Comedy

8:00 pm ($5): In Megan Kellie’s one-woman oddity, “a horrible sketch show morphs into a puppet and foam driven romp that borrows prisoners but gives them back.” This hit at SketchFest NYC 2011 involves audience participation and a certain amount of improv, so every performance is different. Time Out Chicago called it “an exuberant and exciting piece of experimental theater…it sounds strange and it was:” The Pyramid Shew

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

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): Vanessa Bayer (cast member on Saturday Night Live), Eugene Mirman (Conan O’BrienComedy Central Presents, HBO’s Flight of the Conchords, VH1, Adult Swim; pioneer of NYC downtown comedy), Greg Johnson, and rap group Das Racist performing at at the new UCBT-East (Upright Citizens Brigade East Village Theatre at 155 East 3rd Street, off Avenue A) with best bud hosts Noah Garfinkel & Joe Mande (author of Look At This F*cking Hipster) at Totally J/K

9:30 ($5): Three NYC sketch troupes—Dan Hirshon, Lynn Lynn, and “a secret surprise guest”—each performing one of their most popular bits and one of their personal favorites in a sketch revue hosted by Aaron Kheifets: A-Side/B-Side

9:30 pm (no cover, 1-item min.): NYC stand-ups Jamie Kilstein, Jen Kwok, Jason Good, Allison Castillo, and Matt Koff performing stand-up at Luca Lounge (222 Avenue B off 14th Street) for Sean Crespo’s & Carol Hartsell’s weekly comedy show Lasers in the Jungle

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

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Improv troupes The Shucks and Tesla compete for audience laughs and votes at the raucous Cage Match

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

[FREE] 11:00 pm: New weekly open-mic stand-up show, with each comic given five minutes, at the new UCBeast (Upright Citizens Brigade East Village Theatre at 155 East 3rd Street, off Avenue A) hosted by Rob Stern & Amber Nelson: Gutbucket

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

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


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 8/22/11

August 22, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

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

John Mulaney and Vanessa Bayer

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

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


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