NYC Top Comedy Choices for Saturday 12/22/12

December 22, 2012

For more, please visit

Jessi Klein

Jessi Klein performs at If You Build It…

Sara Benincasa 9

…and Sara Benincasa (above) and Claudia Cogan each perform a 30-minute stand-up set at Elf Actualization

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] 4:00 pm: An unusually early weekly open-mic stand-up show (“starts late enough to sleep off that hangover but ends just in time to begin a new one”) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Jhoel Walkowski & Evan Davis: The Amateur Hour

[TOP PICK] 6:00 pm ($5): Alejandro Kolleeny performs a sensitive reading at The PIT downstairs lounge of the Glenn Beck holiday classic The Christmas Sweater

6:00 pm ($5): Improv troupes Petting Zoo, Feitelophone, and Rubin at The Magnet kicking off your Saturday evening: The Rundown

7:00 ($5): UCBT Harold team GoodGirl performs sketches, songs, and other assorted bits related to the holidays at UCB East for one night only: A Very GoodGirl Christmas

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($7): Musical improv from one of The Magnet’s best troupes: Choral Rage

7:30 pm ($10): Talented improvisors at UCB Chelsea interview an audience member about where he or she grew up and then “turn that town’s tourist attractions, landmarks, hangouts, local celebrities, urban legends, and more into a hilarious show made up on the spot:” The Curfew: Not From Around Here

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Mike Lawrence (nerd persona but razor-sharp mind has made this stand-up a rapidly rising star; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central’s John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up), Mark Normand (hilarious stand-up; Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Sean Donnelly (Comedy Central), and many more performing stand-up at Karma Lounge hosted by Sean Lynch (MTV): Karma Christmas Comedy Show

8:00 pm ($5): Christmas songs and holiday-related sketches at The PIT downstairs lounge: The Christmas Musical Comedy Variety Show

[$] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($38.25 & 2-drink min.): A cast member of the much-missed Chappelle’s Show headlining tonight and Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Donnell Rawlings

8:00 pm ($10): Two of the most respected PIT improv troupes performing on this weekly double-bill at the upstairs theatre: Big Black Car and The Baldwins

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at this monthly gay-themed show at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Tom Steffen: Rapier Wit

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10): 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), Kurt Metzger (Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Brent Sullivan (Comedy Central; for video about crying while reading The Giving Tree, please click here), Ashley Brooke Roberts (co-host of The Dream Show), Kerri Lendo, and Jake Young performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Kara Klenk: If You Build It

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 9:00 pm & 11:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 260-2445 and mention, but there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): Killer line-up of stars Janeane Garofalo (9:00 pm only), Judah Friedlander, Ted Alexandro, Rachel Feinstein, and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): One of the gutsiest and most hilarious troupes in comedy history—with honors including being Cage Match Champion for three years in a row, and winning the 2011 ECNY Award for Best Improv Group—UCB Chelsea’s genius improvisors Death by Roo Roo

9:00 pm ($7): Magnet improvisors team up with poets at Kiss*Punch*Poem

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): Sara Benincasa (NBC’s Today Show, The Joy Behar Show, CNN, MTV, The Sarah Palin Vlogs, Sex and Other Human Activities podcast, host of Family Hour, author of Agorafabulous) and Claudia Cogan (Last Comic Standing, MTV, Logo, here! TV) each perform 30-minute stand-up sets at The PIT upstairs theatre: Elf Actualization

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central’s The Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award), Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon; host of If You Bring It), and Charles Gould performing sets and then being interviewed about their personal lives at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Matt Ruby & Mark Normand (who says “all these guys were hand-picked because they’re funny and have some serious problems; when you read this lineup you’re gonna be like ‘oh yeah, that guy is a mess'”): We’re All Friends Here

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($15): Ted Greenberg (Emmy-winning David Letterman writer) performing a fun, fast-paced theatrical comedy show—complete with audience interaction and audience rides home!—at The Complete Performer

10:00 pm ($5): Improvisors make up a Quentin Tarantino movie at The PIT downstairs lounge—”If you like Grindhouse, Kung Fu, Spaghetti Western, Noir, and the entire 1970s, you’ll want to check out:” The Tarantino

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Improv troupe Grandma’s Ashes—which includes stellar talents Ryan Karels, Morgan Grace Jarrett, Brandon Scott Jones, and more—promises to “take your stories of the tragic and depraved and scatter them into laughter” at this newest UCB Chelsea show to be honored with a weekend time slot: Grandma’s Ashes Gets Dark

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): UCBT improv troupe Airwolf—which includes such talents as John Frusciante, Molly Lloyd, Tim Martin, and Emily Axford, and has so far crushed 10 improv groups in a row at Cage Match, entirely owns the UCB East stage tonight at Airwolf: Let’s Go Back to Your Place

10:30 pm ($7): Nick Kanellis & Peter McNerney performing at The Magnet as comedy duo Trike

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Original comedic songs are showcased, with tonight’s performers Jon Bander, J Hobart B, The ParoDivas, Julie Feltman,a nd Kathleen Armenti at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Justin Perez & Shaina Stigler: Totally Requesty

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($5): Improv is dominated by guys…and for no good reason. A way to help remedy this situation are shows like this one at UCB Chelsea, which is a monthly open improv jam for any female wanting to participate, at any experience level—and which has a very special and communal “gal energy” you’re unlikely to find anywhere else. The show’s creator, the wonderful Shannon O’Neill, is out of town this weekend, but it’s still likely to be good thanks to the participation of other top UCBT gal improv stars: The Lady Jam

Midnight ($5): Keisha Zollar (Doppelganger, host of The Soul Glo Project, Andy Kaufman Award finalist) hosts a variety show at UCB East that’s a mix of forms, with tonight’s performers Narinder Singh (stand-up), Megan Sass (music), and jams with teams led by Jon Monje and Carly Ann Filbin: The Soul Glo Project

[FREE] Midnight: A weekly chance for you to shine at The Magnet, as students and veteran improvisors share the stage to form “rare and wonderful one-night-only teams,” with sign-up starting at 11:30 pm: Magnet Mixer

 From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.