NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 1/19/11

January 19, 2011

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For my all-time favorite oddball comedy videos, please click here.

Elna Baker with chimp

World-class storytellers Elna Baker (above), Adam Wade, Sara Schaefer, and Seth Herzog show & discuss childhood movies tonight at Jon Friedman's The Rejection Show

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

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

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm ($15): Brilliantly talented cartoonists for The New Yorker and national comic strips compete for audience applause as they employ their quick wits and drawing skills to meet various comedic challenges in this wonderful show featuring Hilary Price (Rhymes With Orange), Eric Lewis (Animal Nuz, The New Yorker), Matt Diffee (The Rejection Collection, The New Yorker), and Drew Dernavich (The New Yorker)—plus a musical guest—hosted by delightful comic Patrick Borelli (Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central)—all at Fisticuffs!

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Doctors, writers, storytellers and/or nerds Naomi Azar (psychologist and yoga instructor), Johanna Clearfield (storyteller at The Moth), Seth Lind (host of storytelling showTold), Erin Barker (writer), Jefferson (writer), Steve Zimmer (computer programmer), and host Ben Lillie tell funny tales at this monthly show that tonight focus on a trimly subject for NYC’s flu season—Pathology—at Brooklyn’s Pacific Standard (82 Fourth Avenue): The Story Collider

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($28 online using discount code TMANIA): UK-based Daniel Kitson is one of the sharpest and most respected writer/performers alive. This is a rare opportunity to spend an intimate 90 minutes with a true genius of comedy. Please note this is a sprawling, detail-packed theatrical show, not stand-up…and not for every taste. But whether you’re ultimately grabbed by the story or not, it’s worth experiencing if only for Daniel’s lightning-quick flashes of humor. For example, at the performance I attended a woman sitting in the front row had the incredible gall to start reading. Daniel sweetly responded, “Ooh, that’s a subtle yet effective form of criticism. I’m certainly not cross with you, just too nosy about what you’re reading to plow on. Look, you’re still reading. What a lack of faith you have in live entertainment.” Place your faith in Daniel, check out write-ups in The New York Times by clicking here andhere, and catch this show running every day except Mondays through January 30th at Brooklyn’s St. Ann’s Warehouse (38 Water Street): The Interminable Suicide of Gregory Church

8:00 pm ($5): Brooke Van Poppelen (brilliant stand-up, writer, and storyteller; blogger for trutV; TLC; popular blogs and RockBottom; for stand-up videos about overindulging at 30 and impersonating Morrisey, please click here and here) and Giulia Rozzi (VH1,Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Stripped Stories) hosting this free weekly NYC stand-up comedy show, with tonight’s guests Liz Miele, Al Jackson, Joe List, Pat O’Shea, and Sara Jo Allocco—plus musical guests Ryan Roger & Jeff Gretz—performing at Brooklyn’s Hank’s Rootin’ Tootin’ Saloon(46 Third Avenue at Atlantic): Dive Comedy

8:00 pm ($5): Billy Eichner provides a fun, energy-filled show fueled by his love of celebrity pop culture in Billy Eichner Goes Pop! ; plus for the second half of this double bill, young talents perform a loud and mildly amusing sketch show about cops in The Sit Down and Shut Up NYPD Variety Hour

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Bruce Cherry, Kristeen von Hagen, Dan Hirshon, Chris Doucette, Elihu Dietz, and Lisa Kirchner performing at this free weekly show hosted by Sharon Spell: Shrink

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Robin Fox, Adam Lehman, and Kara Klenk performing at the Bar-Tini Ultra Lounge (542 Tenth Avenue, between 40th & 41st Streets) for a free weekly gay-themed comedy show hosted by Adam Sank: That Sank Show

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): A blowout lineup of phenomenal storytellers & comics—Elna Baker , Adam Wade, Sara Schaefer, and Seth Herzog—share movies they made as kids, along with highly entertaining tales about these cinematic masterpieces, at a very special edition of Jon Friedman’s & guest host Mamrie Hart’s wonderful The Rejection Show

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

For my all-time favorite oddball comedy videos, please click here.

For full details, please visit