NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 10/24/13

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Starting Monday following Conan on TBS: The Pete Holmes Show

Dave Hill

Brilliant alt comic Dave Hill…

Joe Pera

…brilliant surreal comic Joe Pera, and more perform at the debut of Brooklyn stand-up show Comedy Night at Buschenshank

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): “Experts and historical figures discuss the most important topics of the day in this comedy panel show” at UCB East hosted by Erik Tanouye and/or Will Hines: What’s All This Then, America?

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Andy Ross (Comedy Central, Mad Magazine), Kerri Doherty (host of Geeking Out), and Amber Drea performing at this unique oddball storytelling show at the KGB Bar (85 East 4th Street, off Second Avenue) hosted by the lovely Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Sirius XM, Huffington Post) that features such charms as accordion playing by Dr. Michelle-Leona Godin and a trivia contest with an alcoholic prize: Sideshow Goshko

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): “Ever watch a musical improv show and wonder why the performers can’t learn to play their own instruments? Wonder no longer. Tom Lisi, Melissa Gordon, and Rich Hollman will rock you with their voices and guitars, entering into the pantheon of folk-rock-blues gods” at The PIT downstairs lounge: Thunder and Lightning

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5): Keith Alberstadt (David Letterman, VH1, contributor to SNL’s Weekend Update), Barry Rothbart (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Comedy Central, MTV’s Punk’d, IFC’s Do Whatever), Chelsea White (producer of MTV’s Girl Code, VH1, TLC, co-host of What Else and Call Us Crazy), Nat Towsen (co-host of The Moon Show, host of Downtown Variety Hour), and Trey Galyon performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Sean Crespo, Dan Wilbur, and/or Katina Corrao: Lasers in the Jungle

[$] 7:30 pm ($38.25 & 2-drink min.): One of the cast members of the seminal In Living Color headlining tonight through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Tommy Davidson

[$] 7:30 pm ($15 at the door or $16.52 online): The charming Jenn Dodd demonstrates her skills at transforming into multiple extreme characters in this production that pretends Jenn’s neglected to appear for her own one-woman show. The hour doesn’t really hang together as an emotionally satisfying journey, and Jenn might benefit from working with a writer or tough editor to beef up her scripts, but she’s a performer worth keeping an eye on. If you’d care to check this out, there are just two performances left at Stage Left Studio, 214 West 30th Street (off Seventh Avenue), on the 6th Floor: No Show: A One-Woman Show

[TOP PICK] 8:00ish 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; another time he ended his set by slicing milk; and when headlining at Carolines he had a first date on stage with a random member of the audience; for Joe’s latest Kaufman awards submissions, please click here and here), Claudia Cogan (Last Comic Standing, MTV, Logo, here! TV), Catie Lazarus (Employee of the Month show & podcast), Eliza Skinner (writer for FX’s Totally Biased), and more performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Buschenshank (320 Court Street) hosted by Tim Ellis & Mo Fathelbab: Comedy Night at Buschenshank: Dave Hill, Joe Pera, Claudia Cogan, and More

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm-MIdnight ($7 for the entire evening): The Magnet house improv groups The Boss and Hello Laser performing improv for an hour, followed at 9:00 pm by The Sleepover (long form improv with elements of monoscene, deconstruction, and La Ronde), and at 10:00 pm by veteran improvisors making up scenes based on improvised monologues from Tim Manley at The Armando Diaz Experience, and finally at 11:00 improv competition Inspirado (like UCBT’s Cage Match, but with a game-like challenge component) featuring Pumpkin vs. Megalou: The Magnet’s Night Out

8:00 pm ($10): Jenny Jaffe (staff writer for MTV’s Nikki and Sara Live) hosts this variety show featuring guests TBD at The PIT upstairs theatre: Camp Time

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Mark Normand (hilarious rising star; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; opens for Amy Schumer; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Doug Smith, Hadiyah Robinson, and Taylor Ketchum performing stand-up at Poco Restaurant & Bar (33 Avenue B at 3rd Street) hosted by Sooyah Jun & Jawann Carmona: FTH Comedy

8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, MTV, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Dive comedy and Stripped Stories) delivers as charming a performance as possible considering her one-woman show is about her talking a guy into a terrible marriage and then cheating on him until it mercifully ends in divorce. What’s an even bigger problem is that Giulia fails to identify how the experience changed her in a substantial way that would make the show emotionally satisfying for the audience. Giulia’s one of the most talented raunchy storytellers in the country, but some more focus on basic storytelling structure would go a long way in Bad Bride

..and in the second half of this double-bill, “Allie Kokesh and Matthew Brian Cohen dated for 18 months. Then they broke up. Maybe if they go through their relationship, scene by scene, they can figure out what happened. Or, it could just be a mess. Relationships are funny like that” (here’s hoping): Why We Broke Up

[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

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents), Phil Hanley (Jay Leno), Joe Zimmerman, and Christina Bianco performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s BAM (30 Lafayette Avenue) hosted by Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon; host of If You Bring It): Get It Out There

9:00 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups (not announced this week) performing at UCB East hosted by Emily Heller and/or Adam Conover: Fresh Out

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): TV & movie star Taylor Negron, Kevin Barnett (MTV’s Guy Code, Comedy Central, Sleepwalk With Me, College Humor), David Crabb (frequent host of The Moth, two-time Moth StorySlam Champion, co-host of Ask Me Stories), and Amy Sohn sharing true tales at The PIT upstairs theatre on tonight’s theme Rock Bottom at one of the finest storytelling shows in the country hosted by Kevin Allison (legendary MTV sketch series The State, HBO, Comedy Central, VH1, owner of The Story Studio): Risk!: Rock Bottom

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): Improvisors make up one-act plays on the spot at The PIT downstairs lounge, produced by Dan Hodapp & Micah Sherman: The Scene

9:30 pm ($5): If you’re a fan of, you can see the folks behind it plus like-minded comics on the UCB Chelsea stage—tonight including Streeter Seidell (Editor-in-Chief of College Humor; Jimmy Kimmel, MTV’s Pranked), Josh Ruben, Dan Gurewitch, Nick Kocher, and Jake & Amir: CollegeHumor Live

[FREE] 10:00 pm: “Comedy, music, and lots of love” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Patrick J. Reilly: I Love You Show

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Wow. Force of chaos Fuck That Shit demolished improv group Namaste‘s 7-week winning streak with a decisive 107-44 victory. New champion FTS tonight faces legendary improv group Rogue Elephant for a battle that may shake the Heavens at UCB Chelsea, competing for your laughs and votes at the raucous Cage Match

11:00 pm ($5): This sketch comedy/talk/variety show features UCB comics performing stand-up, sketch, and more at UCB East hosted by Anthony Apruzzese: Showtime with Anthony Apruzzese

Thursday Open Mics & Jams

5:00 pm ($5): Two-hour open-mic for 20 stand-ups performing for 5 minutes each, with sign-up online here, at the Stand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): Stand Up NY Open Mic

[FREE] 5:30 pm: All-gal open-mic at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”) hosted by Anna Drezen & Sue Smith: Open Michelle: Ladies Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up with comics’ names drawn from a bucket and each chosen receiving 2 minutes—and if that goes well, maybe a hug (but not actual puppies)—at The Creek’s upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Ross Parsons & Trey Galyon: Free Puppies

6:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, running 2 1/2 hours. Arrive 30 minutes before the show 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

7:00 pm ($2, which includes a free beer or water): Open mic stand-up providing a whopping 10 minutes per comic. Email with subject line Phoning Thursday to sign up; or take a chance at lottery sign-up live between 6:45 and 7:45 at Brit Pack Studios (153 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor) hosted by Ian Fidance: Comics Phoning It In

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

9:30 pm (free for audience members, $5 or 1 drink min. for stand-ups wanting to perform): Open mic stand-up providing 7 minutes per comic (and a free recording of your set!), with order determined raffle-style. Sign up by emailing or calling (212) 253-7747, or just walk in and supply your name, to perform at the Old Man Hustle Bar (39 Essex Street) hosted by Solomon Chehebar: Peep Show Comedy Open Mic

[FREE] 11:00 pm: An open-mic show that’s first come, first serve, with each comic getting 3-5 minutes on stage at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Josh Alba: Mic and Cheese

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): An open stage for indie improv groups—and if you’re not in a group, that’s also fine, you’ll simply be added to one—at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Darcy Burke & Donna Lobello: New Team Lunacy

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$15)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

The Creek and the Cave
(Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all shows free)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
(117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.)

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

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.

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