NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 1/19/12

January 19, 2012

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Daniel Kitson

Genius stand-up Daniel Kitson plays around with new material in ways only he can at Work in Progress...

Leslie Goshko

...and birthday gal Leslie Goshko and four other stellar storytellers attempt to fool you at The Liar Show

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $12 marked with $) include:

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Naomi Ekperigin (stand-up/improvisor/actress; Huffington Post) is tonight’s guest at this weekly open-mic storytelling show, with each performer given a whopping eight minutes to captivate & impress, at UCB East hosted by John Flynn: Oh, Hey Guys!

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

6:30 pm ($5): Two shows about which I know nothing audition for a regular spot on the prestigious UCB Chelsea schedule: Dog Fleet and Newsadoozies. These might be great or awful; but at $2.50 per show, you can’t go far wrong either way. That’s part of the fun of Spank

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($12): Five funny people tell amazing stories. Three of the tales are absolutely true…but two of them are a pack of lies. The audience then asks questions to try and identify the fibber—and everyone who does gets a free t-shirt! Tonight’s yarn-spinners are birthday gal Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Manhattan Monologue Slam Champ, host of Sideshow Goshko), Jim O’Grady (WNYC, The New York Times), Kambri Crews (author ofBurn Down The Ground), Tracy Rowland (TV writer and producer), and Colin Dempsey (ComedyLand) performing at the 92YTribeca with host Andy Christie (The New York Times, NPR, WFUV’s CityScape, Moth GrandSlam Champion): The Liar Show

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

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5): “If you were alive in the 70’s, you may have attended some ‘Key Parties’ where you were randomly paired with someone to go home with and engage in free spirited coitus. (Today we either stay at home alone or congregate at an improv theater.) Key Party combines the 70’s arrangement with modern anxiety, exploring the rich moments leading up to that act of coupling and the fallout that follows” at UCB East with stellar comics Jordan Klepper, Laura Grey (delightful old-time radio style theatrical podcast Horrorgasm), and guest improvisors: Key Party; plus in the second half of this double-bill, improv based on the iPods, CDs, and mp3 players provided by audience members, executed by superb performers Fran Gillespie, Ryan Karels, Megan Neuringer, Jesse Falcon, Silvija Ozols, Doug Moe, Lou Perez, Sue Galloway, and Emily Axford: Soundtrack USA

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10 at the door or $11.78 in advance online): At this all-musical edition, top musicians Ted Leo, Corn Mo, and the Gregory Brothers (famed for auto-tuning the news) share memorable tales of their material being turned down at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) for Jon Friedman’s wonderful The Rejection Show

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($25 at the box office or $28 online): 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 both stand-up and storytelling. This show is the latter—a carefully constructed, detail-packed theatrical tale of two people and the small, quiet moments that make up their lives. Daniel says it’s “about everything and nothing,” and that’s precisely right. After you see it, you may find it hard to not consider all the small moments lived by any person you pass by…and what the moments of your own life add up to. This one-man show played to packed houses at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and is now running every day except Mondays through January 29th at Brooklyn’s St. Ann’s Warehouse (38 Water Street). Read the review from The New York Times, and the grab tickets for It’s Always Right Now, Until It’s Later

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Comedy duo Nick Kocher & Brian McElhaney perform new sketches atUCB Chelsea, as well as host stand-up and improv guests: BriTANicK: The Monthly Mankerthon

8:00 pm ($5): Two singing improv troupes, Hot Diner and THEM, make up entire musicals on the spot in this double-bill at The PIT upstairs theatre for the most on-the-nose show title tonight: Improvised Musical

8:00 pm-MIdnight ($7 for the entire evening): The Magnet co-owner helming The Armando Diaz Experience, plus house troupes The Boss, Junior Varsity, Hello Laser, and Phooka performing improv, followed by improv competition Inspirado (like UCBT’s Cage Match, but with a game-like challenge component) with Leviathan and last week’s winner competing at 11:00 pm: The Magnet’s Night Out

[$] 8:00 pm ($32.75 & 2-drink min.): A cast member of the much-missed Chappelle’s Showheadlining tonight, Friday, and Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Donnell Rawlings

8:00 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups Jon Rineman (Jimmy Fallon), Luke Thayer (MTV, Tyra Banks), Yvonne Orji, and Marvin Izquierdo, plus freestyle hip-hopper James Robilotta, performing at The PITdownstairs lounge hosted by comedic rapper Andrew Singer and Kara Klenk: Positively Awesome

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm (no cover, 1-item min.): Jessi Klein (fresh, unique, deliciously organic comic who’s one of the best stand-ups in the country; former staff writer for Saturday Night Live; Comedy Central, VH1, NBC, CNN, Adult Swim), Dan St. Germain (quick-witted & enormously likeable rising star; Jimmy Fallon, MTV, VH1; for reenactment of Dan’s breakup, please click here), Ryan Conner, Neruda Williams, and Darrin Rose performing stand-up at Luca Lounge (222 Avenue B off 14th Street) for this weekly comedy show hosted by Sean Crespo & Dan Wilbur and produced by Carol Hartsell: Lasers in the Jungle

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00ish pm: Terrific NYC stand-ups (the lineup is typically announced around 3:00 pm; for an update, please click here) performing on this free weekly show at the Kabin Bar and Lounge hosted by Chesley Calloway and/or comedy genius Sean Patton: Comedy as a Second Language

9:00 pm ($5): Typically terrific stand-ups (not yet announced) performing at UCB East with host Noah Garfinkel (co-host Joe Mande is at UCBT-LA this week): Totally J/K

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): The Emmy-winning writers of The Colbert Report gather on the UCB Chelsea stage to perform an all-improvised show at Seize the Mustard

9:30 pm ($5): Ashley Ward & Chris Grace host indie musical improv troupes, and also perform themselves as A/C, a musical monoscene duo, at The PIT upstairs theatre: Playlist

9:30 pm ($5): Improvisors (not announced) make up one-act plays on the spot at The PITdownstairs lounge for The Scene

[FREE] 9:30 pm: A monthly showcase of both stand-ups and improvisors at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City, hosted by stand-up Zach Broussard and improv troupe Priest & the Beekeeper: Pig Pile

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($31.25 & 2-drink min.) A provocative comedy star who’s written for Richard Pryor, Red Foxx, and Saturday Night Live, and performed on Chappelle’s Show and David Letterman, headlining through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Paul Mooney

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): One of the quickest and sharpest minds in comedy plays around with the audience in ways only he can at UCB East while developing new material for an international stand-up tour: Daniel Kitson: Work in Progress

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Genius improv trio Outlook of the Poet and ace musical improv troupe Diamond Lion compete for audience laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea for the raucous Cage Match

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