NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 1/31/11

January 31, 2011

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

Leslie Meisel and Dan St. Germain

Rising stars Leslie Meisel (performing at Deep Traffic) and Dan St. Germain (joking it up at Hot Tub Variety)

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

6:30 pm & 9:00 pm (no cover, 1-item min.): The perfect show for short attention spans—open-mic stand-up with 4½ minutes per set and 25 comics crammed into 2½ hours—with an early show hosted by Sean Donnelly & Blaine Perry at 6:30 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

7:00 pm ($5): Jenny Dunne and Rick Andrews improvise a single moment in two characters’ lives again and again, exploring three parallel realities, and the difference that a look or tone can make; and duo improv by friends who, by a wild coincidence, have the same name, in the double-bill The Cascade and We’re Matt Weir

[FREE] 7:30 pm: NYC stand-ups Reese Waters, Dan Soder, Calvin Cato, Amanda Baramki and Graham Keay performing at a free weekly show in the Manchester Pub hosted by Phoebe Robinson: Case of the Mondays Comedy

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Broadway & off-Broadway stars Maria Dizzia (Tony nominee for In The Next Room), Sandy Rustin (Neil Simon’s Hotel Suite), Kevin Kelly (The Brother/Sister Plays), David Kenner (Old Wicked Songs), Carla Briscoe (Mikveh), and Liz Wisan (Other Desert Cities), mixing it up with some of the best  improvisors in the world—Scott Adsit (30 Rock, Moral Orel, John & Scott), Tara Copeland (The Other Guys, Mother, Baby Wants Candy), Michael Delaney (Conan O’Brien, The Other Guys, The Stepfathers), and Anthony King  (beloved comedy genius and happy new dad)—as they crash improv into classic theatre scenes at actor/director Stephen Ruddy’s Gravid Water

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($6.50 online or $8 at the door): Dan St. Germain (quick-witted rising star;Jimmy Fallon, MTV; for reenactment of Dan’s breakup, please click here), Matt Higgins (superb improv/sketch performer of troupe Centralia), and Dr. Uke and Daughters (ukulele-playing dad and his singing gals) performing at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) with sketches and more from NYC comedy royalty Kristen Schaal and Kurt Braunohler: Hot Tub Variety

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($5—typically with FREE PIZZA!!): Adam Wade (two-time Moth GrandSlam Storytelling Champion (2006 & 2009) and record-breaking 15-time StorySlam Champion; The New York Times Magazine; host of hilarious monthly storytelling extravaganzas Real Tales of Collegeand The Adam Wade show; for Adam’s award-winning tale of being an NBC page on Conan O’Brien, please click here), Sara Schaefer (inventive, luminous comic; Emmy-nominated staff writer for Jimmy Fallon; VH1’s Best Week Ever), Leslie Meisel (30 Rock; superb one-woman show Love Can Suck a Dick), Nick Vatterott (Second City), and Gabe Delahaye (Videogum) performing at theMagnet Theatre for Adam Lerman’s and Willy Appleman’s variety show Deep Traffic

9:30 pm ($5): Two of UCBT’s fine house sketch comedy troupes, Neighbor Boy and Fambly, trying out new bits at Maude Night

9:30 pm ($5): Jeff Seal and Chris Manley perform clowning and vaudeville-style comedy at Neon Lights

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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Unusually, the lineup hasn’t been announced (for an update, please click here); but this is typically one of the very finest stand-up shows in the country…and is free: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 on this stand-up open-mic hosted by Michelle Wolf and Erin Lennox: Fresh

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

For full details, please visit