NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 4/25/12

April 25, 2012

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Cat Unemployment

Sharp storytellers who have had tough times with jobs tells tales about "How I Learned It's a Living"

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] 5:00 pm: Sketch comics—including such superb talents as Lauren Olson, Nicole Byer, and Meghan O’Neill—audition their funniest characters at The Magnet for a performance spot at the prestigious Montreal comedy festival: Just for Laughs Auditions

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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up providing four minutes per comic, with “15 people chosen randomly through e-mail, and five walk-ins; and a guaranteed spot to anyone who performs in character as a famous explorer” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Comedic Exploration Club of Long Island City, West

7:00 pm-12:30 am ($7 for the entire evening): Magnet brand house troupes Grappler, Leviathan, The Surge, The Wrath, Featherweight, Brick, Horses, and Chet Watkins performing improv, followed by a free audience interactive show with The Wrath at 11:30 pm: The Magnet’s Megawatt

7:00 pm ($5): Expanding the UCB longform improv showcased on Maude Night is this weekly show at UCB East which tonight features troupes Graceland and Kinsey: Lloyd Night

7:00 pm (no cover, 1-item min.): NYC stand-ups & storytellers (not announced) performing at McSwiggan’s (393 Second Avenue off 23rd Street) hosted by Selena Coppock—whose birthday is today: Connotation

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Tales of working and unemployment, with stellar storytellers Kevin Allison (legendary MTV sketch series The State, HBO, Comedy Central, VH1, host of award-winning storytelling show Risk!), Ben Lillie (host of The Story Collider), Jessica Courtney Maum (Adult Swim), Tyler Coates, and Greg Olear performing at Happy Ending (302 Broome Street) hosted by Blaise Allysen Kearsley: How I Learned It’s a Living—Stories from the Unemployed, Underemployed, and Working Stiffs

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Molly Knefel (member of superb improv troupe Naked in a Fishbowl) and her brother John Knefel (veteran stand-up) host this monthly comedy show, with tonight’s guests Sara Schaefer (inventive, luminous comic; Emmy-nominated staff writer for Jimmy Fallon; VH1’s Best Week Ever; co-host of hit podcast You Had to Be There), Kevin Barnett (College Humor), and Robert Dean performing stand-up at Le Poisson Rouge (158 Bleecker Street, off Thompson Street): John and Molly Get Along

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): At UCB East, Nicole Byer, Sasheer Zamata, and Keisha Zollar are the fiercely energetic & entertaining all-gal improv troupe Doppelganger

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, a musical about 19th century New York in which “uptown the aristocrats and robber barons think they own the city, while downtown thieves, pimps, and she-males believe they do; but the real kings of the city, the only truly free ones, are the news boys—and for some reason, they’re all British!,” with book & lyrics by Brian Glidewell, Marcy Jarreau & Kevin Carter, and direction by Christopher Gladysz & Lauren Conlin Adams: Newsadoozies: A Man-Eating Musical

…and in the other half of this double-bill, a show for which I had high hopes since some of my fondest childhood memories are of Krypto and his Space Canine Patrol Agents (S.C.P.A.). But this ain’t that. Instead, it’s a deliberately dumb version of Saturday morning cartoon shows that demonstrates little respect, affection, or wit towards its source material. The only notable elements are Neil Casey, who is hilarious as an evil alien; Rob Lathan as Neil’s lackey; and Sue Galloway as the gal even dog creatures want to make out with. This could have been so much more, especially with the brilliant Craig Rowin as co-writer; but instead it’s merely Dog Fleet

[TOP PICK] [FREE—including FREE PIZZA] 8:00 pm: Sara Schaefer (inventive, luminous comic; Emmy-nominated staff writer for Jimmy Fallon; VH1’s Best Week Ever; co-host of hit podcast You Had to Be There), Adam Lowitt (Producer of The Daily Show), Nick Cobb, and Susana Perlman performing at the East Village’s Beauty Bar with hosts Amy Albert & Beth McGregor for their free weekly show Comedy School Dropout

8:00 pm ($5): At this unique new comedic storytelling show, “each performer narrates while panelists interrupt and interject until the funniest truth comes out,” with tonight’s guests including Harrison Greenbaum (writer for Mad Magazine; head writer of Tu Nite con Lorenzo Parro on NBCU/Telemundo; winner of the 2010 Andy Kaufman Award) talking on the theme Fresh Start at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Nina Mozes (Risk!, Stuckey & Murray): Please Interrupt Me

[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

[FREE] 8:30 pm: Typically terrific NYC comics (not announced) performing at this free weekly comedy show at Brooklyn’s Cameo (behind Lovin’ Cup) typically hosted by Jenny Slate, Gabe Liedman, and/or Max Silvestri: Big Terrific

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): Neil Casey & Anthony Atamanuik, both genius members of Death by Roo Roo, perform the jaw-dropping feat of making up an entire feature film at UCB East as The Two-Man Movie

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): One of the finest comedic storytelling shows in the country, in which brilliant writer/performers—who tonight are Adam Wade, Anthony Atamanuik, Jon Gabrus, Juliet Hope Wayne, and host Dave Martin—tell tales that are brutally honest and utterly hilarious at UCB Chelsea, with tonight’s theme Ambition: The Nights of Our Lives

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): The instructors of UCB’s classes include some of the finest improvisors in the country. In this new 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 pm: NYC stand-ups perform along with side-show attractions such as jugglers, contortionists, and fire eaters at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City for this unusual carny experience: Abigoliah’s Bizzarre Bazaar

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: The wonderful Sasheer Zamata (Doppelganger) hosts 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. Tonight’s scheduled lineup includes Katey Healy-Wurzburg, Leslie Meisel, and Annie Lederman; 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

11:00 pm ($5): Stand-up, sketch, improv, and chats about books at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Brennan Lee Mulligan & Jessica Rionero: Book Club

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Your opportunity to perform on the stage of UCB East with improv veterans, hosted by UCBT Harold Night house troupe Grandma’s Ashes: The Improv Jam

[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

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