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For comprehensive coverage of the FringeNYC 2011 Encore Series, please click here.
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] 6:30 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
[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): Jimmy Fallon writer Casey Jost performs a one-man show in which he plays a myriad of characters revolving around a theme—which for this debut show is Music: Fooling Around with Casey Jost
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: Phoebe Robinson (normally the host, but Phoebe wants to do a set tonight), Dave Greek, Morgan Venticinque, Kevin Barnett, Luke Yonger, Trey Galyon, and Jayson Cross performing stand-up at a free weekly show in the Manchester Pub guest-hosted by Miguel Dalmau (TruTV): Case of the Mondays Comedy
[MEGA-TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Film, and Broadway & off-Broadway stars Jonathan Kaplan (Tony nominee for Falsettos; Diary of Anne Frank on Broadway) Cristin Milioti (30 Rock; Coram Boy, Lieutenant of Inishmore on Broadway), Stephen Ruddy (Skype Duet, Chekhov’s Gun), Amy Rutberg (The Divine Sister, Our Leading Lady), and Julie Sharbutt (Shakespeare in the Park: Twelfth Night, Maladies) mixing it up with some of the greatest improvisors in the world—Scott Adsit (30 Rock, Moral Orel, John & Scott), Tara Copeland (Baby Wants Candy, Mother, Diamond Lion, The Made Up Musical, The Other Guys), Michael Delaney (Conan O’Brien, The Other Guys, The Stepfathers), John Lutz (30 Rock, Saturday Night Live, John & Scott), Michael Patrick O’Brien (Saturday Night Live), and Jason Sudeikis (Saturday Night Live)—as they crash improv into classic theatre scenes at actor/director Stephen Ruddy’s Gravid Water
[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($5): World-class storyteller Adam Wade (two-time Moth GrandSlam Storytelling Champion (2006 & 2009) and record-breaking 17-time StorySlam Champion; The New York Times Magazine; host of The Adam Wade Show; for Adam’s award-winning tale of being an NBC page on Conan O’Brien, please click here) hosts a show that’s “like watching the characters of The Wonder Years and Freaks & Geeks all grown up and telling coming-of-age tales of love, lost, regret, and redemption,” with tonight’s guests Megan Gray, Joel Jones, Matt DeCosta, and Brad Steuernagel: Adam Wade’s Whatever Happened to the Nerds?
[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): One of UCBT’s finest in-house sketch comedy troupes Fambly(spearheaded by rising star Mamrie Hart, who’s snared over 160,000 visits to date with her latest YouTube viral video), plus in-house troupe Neighbor Boy (which isn’t in the same league, but features such appealing performers as Kate Hess and Tim Dunn), trying out new bits at Maude Night
[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Comedic storytellers Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; Manhattan Monologue Slam Champ, host of Sideshow Goshko), Ben Lillie (The Story Collider), and Damian Bellino share tales of the heart at The PIT’s downstairs lounge hosted by Arial Karlin: The Do What’s in Your Heart Show
[FREE] 9:30 pm: NYC stand-ups Pat Dixon, Phoebe Robinson, Charlie Kasov, Nathan Rand, Paul Hooper, Laura Prangley, Josh Carter, and Zach McGovern performing at Pat O’Shea’s free biweekly Brooklyn showcase at Freddy’s Backroom (627 5th Avenue): Ed Sullivan on Acid
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: Some of the finest stand-ups in the world—who tonight include Anthony Jeselnik (one of my all-time favorite stand-ups; former writer/performer for Jimmy Fallon;Conan O’Brien, HBO, Comedy Central Presents; debut comedy CD Shakespeare), Kumail Nanjiani (David Letterman, Saturday Night Live, The Colbert Report, Jimmy Kimmel, writer/performer for Comedy Central’s Michael & Michael Have Issues; winner of the 2009 ECNY Awards for Best Male Stand-Up), Sean Patton (red-hot rising star; killer set on Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central, VH1; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Rachel Feinstein (finalist on this summer’s Last Comic Standing; Comedy Central; opens for Sarah Silverman on tour), and Zach Sherwin (a.k.a. MC Mr. Napkins)—hosted by the wonderful Leo Allen (HBO, Saturday Night Live, Conan 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.