NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 5/20/13

May 20, 2013

For more, please visit

Top comics on TV: Watch Andrea Rosen’s new docuseries here
and check out Pete Holmes’ new Comedy Central special/DVD here.

Chris Gethard

Genius stand-ups: Chris Gethard performs at Night Train…

Dave Hill

…and Dave Hill performs at Comedy Central Corporate Retreat…

Robin Gelfenbien

…or if you prefer storytelling, Robin Gelfenbien’s at Local Stories…

Leslie Goshko

…and Leslie Goshko’s at Adventures with Melanie Hamlett

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:

6:00 pm ($5 cover for comics, no cover for audience with code HyReviews, plus 1-drink min.): The perfect show for short attention spans—open-mic stand-up with 4 1/2 minutes per set and 20 comics crammed into 2 hours—at the Greenwich Village Comedy Club (99 MacDougal Street) for John Morrison’s Village Motel

6:00 pm & 8:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, with each show running 1 hour and 45 minutes. Arrive 30 minutes before the show you want to be in to get on the signup sheet. This is a fine opportunity to perform at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show, with 10 comics each performing for 5 minutes, at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Abigoliah Schamaun & Peggy O’Leary: Dicks Open Mic

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 6:30 pm: Open-mic storytelling in a supportive environment thanks to highly charming host Julia Wiedeman, with names drawn out of a hat at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”): Happy Hour Open-Mic Storytelling with Julia Wiedeman

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($7): Melanie Hamlett is a Moth Grandslam Champion, co-author of the book Leave the Lipstick, Take the Iguana, and a contributor to Marie Claire Magazine and She’s also a roving adventurer who tours the globe to find memorable tales. Tonight Melanie hosts her monthly storytelling show at Under St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue) with fellow brave souls Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Sirius XM, Huffington Post, host of Sideshow Goshko), Kerri Doherty (Huffington Post, Adult Swim blogger), and storytelling duo Eliot Glazer & Jackie Mancini (Eliot: It Gets Betterish, author of My Parents Were Awesome). Expect amazing stories, and a chatty campfire vibe during which the performers (all on stage for the entire show) exchange personal anecdotes in between the longer stories: Adventures with Melanie Hamlett

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Experienced improvisors will be touring as representatives of The PIT, and practicing together tonight at The PIT downstairs lounge: The PIT TourCo

[FREE] 7:30 pm: Four improvisers form teams with comics they’ve never performed with before at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: The Kaleidoscope

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:30ish pm: Dan Soder (Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1; for set about being a hypochondriatic drug user, please click here), Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central’s The Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award), Pete Lee (Comedy Central Half Hour), Kevin Barnett (MTV’s Guy Code, Comedy Central, Sleepwalk With Me, College Humor), and Jeremy Essig performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Spike Hill (184 & 186 Bedford Avenue, off N 7th Street) hosted by Will WInners & Kyle Ayers: Game Night

7:30 pm ($10; sign-up starts at 7:00 pm): Open mic for stand-ups, storytellers, singers, poets, actors, and more, with 5 minutes per performer and 25 slots available, at One and One Bar’s Downstairs Nexus Lounge (76 1st Street, corner of First Avenue) hosted by Nathan P., followed by a raucous afterparty with dancing & drink specials from 10:00 to midnight: Inspired Word’s Open Mic Joint

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Dave Hill (one of the most original and hilariously sharp alternative comics in the country; HBO, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, NPR, The Dave Hill Explosion, bands Valley Lodge and Diamondsnake, champion rapper, author of Tasteful Nudes), Joe Pera (hilarious deadpan Andy Kaufman-like stand-up; one time I saw Joe sing beautifully and then smash three dozen plates to pieces; more recently he ended his set by slicing milk; for Joe’s latest Kaufman awards submissions, please click here and here), Dan Soder (Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1; for set about being a hypochondriatic drug user, please click here), Abbi Jacobson & Ilana Glazer (Broad City), Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award), and Conner O’Malley performing at UCB East and being recorded for broadcast on the new Comedy Central Radio (Channel 95 on Sirius XM): Comedy Central Corporate Retreat

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($8 at the door or $9.47 online): Chris Gethard (comedy genius; Comedy Central, IFC; star of The Chris Gethard Show; The Stepfathers, The Nights of Our Lives; author of bestseller A Bad Idea I’m About to Do and Weird New York), maybe Wyatt Cenac ((former star correspondent for The Daily Show, Comedy Central hour-long special, Adult Swim), Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), Seth Herzog (staff comic for Jimmy Fallon; 30 Rock, Comedy Central, CBS, VH1, film actor; host of Sweet), DC Benny (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, ABC’s The Unusuals), and Jules Posner (SF SketchFest) performing at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) guest-hosted tonight by Carolyn Castiglia (Last Comic Standing, VH1; for sample of Carolyn as white rapper, please click here): Night Train

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Great lineup of Todd Barry (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, FX’s Louie, HBO’s Flight of the Conchords and Bored to Death, Adult Swim, feature films The Wrestler and Pete Smalls is Dead), Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Tom Papa (host of Jerry Seinfeld-produced NBC comedy The Marriage Ref; numerous appearances on David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno; three Comedy Central specials), Nick Griffin (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), and Godfrey (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, 30 Rock, VH1; films Zoolander, Original Gangsters, Soul Plane; 7 Up Yours ads) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua (HBO’S Bad Boys of Comedy, Comedy Central): Todd Barry, Judah Friedlander, Tom Papa, Nick Griffin, and More

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($35 using code CQUSTX online or at the box office): TV & Broadway stand-up star Colin Quinn performs a show he’s been developing for months for this off-Broadway run (through June 3rd) that looks at US history “from the Founding Fathers to the Kardashians” at the Barrow Street Theatre (27 Barrow Street, just one block from the #1 subway’s Christopher Street stop): Colin Quinn: Unconstitutional

8:00 pm ($5): Two UCB Chelsea house sketch troupes try out new material: Supereasy (which includes comedy chameleon Livia Scott) and Onassis (which includes such talents as Lauren Adams and Frank Hejl): Maude Night: Supereasy and Onassis

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Storytellers Robin Gelfenbien (host of storytelling show Yum’s the Word; VH1, Sirius Satellite Radio, FringeNYC), Ray DeVito (Second City), Amber Drea (Another Round Storytelling), and Brady Dale share personal tales on this month’s topic of Elimination at the Three of Cups lounge (83 First Avenue at 5th Street) hosted by Andrew Linderman, and featuring trivia questions & prizes: Local Stories: Elimination

8:00 pm ($8): Allison Schultz and Susan-Kate Heaney perform a two-woman show about “attempting to overcome the trauma of growing up with curly hair and bangs. The rumors are true; comedy really does heal everything” at The PIT upstairs theatre: Kinky Bangs: From Here to Here

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Emmy Blotnick (MTV’s Nikki and Sara Live), Michelle Wolf (IFC), Dina Hashem, Rae Sanni, and Casey James Salengo performing in Brooklyn’s Park Slope Beauty Bar (249 Fifth Avenue) for this free monthly hosted by Charla Lauriston & Meg Ferrill: Show Show

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 8:30 pm ($15 if you mention [otherwise $20], which includes one drink. This show has SOLD OUT. You can try calling 212.989.9319 to reserve a spot on the waiting list, but there may be a bunch of folks ahead of you): John Oliver (star correspondent of The Daily Show—and who’ll be hosting this summer while Jon Stewart is off directing his first filmco-star of NBC’s Community, star of Comedy Central’s New York Stand-Up Show, screenwriter, and genius stand-up comic), TV & movie star Janeane Garofalo, Liam McEneaney (Comedy Central, VH1’s Best Week Ever, Showtime, host of Tell Your Friends), and “a special guest” performing stand-up at the Cornelia Street Cafe for John Morrison’s Morrison Motel

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10): A stand-up who’s appeared on Conan O’Brien, CNN, MSNBC, and Showtime, writes for The Huffington Post, and co-hosts Citizen Radio performs a long set at The Magnet theatre: Jamie Kilstein

[FREE] 8:30 pm: Dave Waite (Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central), Rob O’Reily, Dave Rosinsky, Jaqi Furback, David Foster, Rick Wood, and Grant Lyon performing stand-up at 25 Avenue A (Avenue A & 2nd Street): The Meaning of Life Comedy Show

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced this week) performing at Brooklyn’s Public Assembly (70th North 6th Street, by the L subway’s Bedford Avenue stop) hosted by Nimesh Patel, Mike Denny, and/or Michael Che: Broken Comedy

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Two UCB Chelsea house sketch troupes try out new material: The Prom (which includes such stellar talents as Amber Nelson, Stephen Soroka, and Siobhan Thompson), and Dinner (which includes Eddie Dunn, Natasha Rothwell, and Bree Sharp): Maude Night: The Prom and Dinner

[FREE] 9:30 pm: NYC stand-ups Claudia Cogan (Last Comic Standing, MTV, Logo, here! TV), Mo Diggs, Ray Devito, Stacey Kendro, Jenny Rubin, Nate Rand, Matt Nagin, and Nick Whitmer performing at Brooklyn’s Freddy’s Backroom (627 5th Avenue) with host Pat O’Shea: Ed Sullivan on Acid

9:30 pm ($5): Improv veterans Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, Phillip Jackson, and/or Steve Theiss hosting & performing in a show at UCB East with guest improvisors: Improv Nerds

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Following a club format, hosts Nore Davis & Andrew Short perform stand-up throughout for a total of 25 minutes, two comics each perform a 15-minute set, and then a seasoned headliner closes out the show with a 20-minute set, all at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: On the Road

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Great lineup of Dave Attell (one of the most respected stand-ups in the biz; star of Showtime’s Dave’s Old Porn and Comedy Central’s Insomniac; HBO, David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents), John Mulaney (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; writer/performer for Saturday Night Live; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, one hour special & CD/DVD New in Town, VH1’s Best Week Ever; for John’s great bit on Weekend Update, please click here), Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), Phil Hanley (Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central), Sam Morril (Comedy Central), and Justin Silver (star of CBS’ Dogs in the City) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua (HBO’S Bad Boys of Comedy, Comedy Central): Dave Attell, John Mulaney, Joe List, and More

10:00 pm ($8): A group of actors and improvisors attempt to duplicate the success of UCBT’s Gravid Water by putting improvisors in the middle of classic theatre scenes at The PIT upstairs theatre. UCBT uses top Broadway and improv talent for its show, making it extraordinary. The participants of this show are unannounced; but the format is so strong that this might work anyway, despite the awful title: The Actor’s Worst Nightmare

10:00 pm ($7): Improv at The Magnet from a group that promises to create “a universe of unique sensation, demonstrations, and displays appealing to the sensible and nervous alike:” The Boss

10:30 pm ($5): Improv veterans Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, and Phillip Jackson hosting & performing in a show at UCB East with improvisors taken from the audience…and who may include you: Improv Nerds Jam

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest comics in the world—who are no longer being announced in advance, but it’s virtually always a great lineup—at UCB Chelsea hosted by the wonderful Leo Allen (HBO, Saturday Night Live, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central): Whiplash

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): If you’re an audience member who loves stand-up, Monday at 11 should be Whiplash! 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 exceptionally supportive stand-up open-mic at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Jarrid Reed: Fresh

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Improv students are welcomed onto the stage at The PIT downstairs lounge for this weekly open access show hosted by Gary DeNoia & Langston Belton: Base Jam

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.