NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 12/16/13

December 16, 2013

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Joe Pera's 11 Burbank Drive

Joe Pera spearheads the debut of a holiday play likely to be an instant classic at UCB East: 11 Burbank Drive…

Livia Scott Sketch Program

…and Livia Scott spearheads fresh, smart, hilarious sketch at UCB Chelsea: The Livia Scott Sketch Program

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:

7:00 pm ($5): Sketch comedy from two twenty-something gals having trouble finding love and describing why in a multimedia show at The PIT downstairs lounge: Kelly and Lindsey Do New York

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Legendary improvisor Armando Diaz leads comics in creating comedy videos, which will be screened tonight at The Magnet theatre: Magnet Video Lab

[FREE] 7:30ish pm: Rebecca Vigil (powerhouse improv singer The Vigilante), Nick Turner (Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central, VH1, host of Nick Turner & Acquaintances), Tim Dillon, Kenny DeForest, and more performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Spike Hill (184 & 186 Bedford Avenue, off N 7th Street) hosted by Will WInners & Kyle Ayers: Game Night

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($8 at the door or $9.47 online): Strong all-star lineup of Jon Benjamin (unique off-the-wall comedy genius; FOX’s Bob’s Burgers, FX’s Archer, Comedy Central’s Jon Benjamin Has a Van, Adult Swim, MTV’s Human Giant), Sean Patton (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; killer sets on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien, upcoming Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1, feature film Wifed Out; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Brooke Van Poppelen (brilliant writer, stand-up, and storyteller; writer and/or producer for MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Failosophy, and Nikki & Sara Show; trutV, TLC, co-host of Dive Comedy), Brooks Whelan (cast member of Saturday Night Live), Jena Friedman (wry dark comedy stand-up and rising star; producer for The Daily Show, former staff writer for David Letterman, host of Entertaining the Bartender), and Jared Logan (rising star; Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever, CNN, TBS) performing at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) hosted by Wyatt Cenac (former star correspondent for The Daily Show, Comedy Central hour-long special, Adult Swim): Night Train

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Joe Pera writes, “Recently Comedy Central Corporate Retreat asked if I would be interested in putting together a holiday show with them. ‘That’d be nice,’ I said, ‘especially because for the past two years I’ve been tinkering on an old fashioned holiday play. It begins with an address to the audience about the way things used to be and ends with a snowmobile crashing into the Statue of Liberty.’ Come see that vision come alive on the UCB East stage, aided by co-writers Dan Licata & Charles Gould, and performed by Aparna Nancherla, Conner O’Malley, Sarah Tollemache, Nathan Min, Jeffrey Katsman, and Joe Rumrill: Joe Pera’s 11 Burbank Drive

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Comedic storytellers Malaika Gordon (Local Stories), Ryan McKee (blogger for MTV’s Guy Code), Nick Padilla, and Patrick J. Reilly performing at Fontana’s (105 Eldridge Street) for this monthly show hosted by Jake Hart & Bodger Millerd: Antagonist Storytelling Series

8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, “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

..and in the second half of this double-bill, Matt Dennie & Josh Sharp perform their version of Forest Gump live on stage in 30 minutes, directed by Brandon Gulya: GUMP

[FREE] 8:00 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] 8:30 pm ($5): “Seven people, each of whom somehow ended up watching the 1997 children’s movie Good Burger on Christmas, gradually realize that even the stupidest, most forgettable mass market crap can lead to moments of hope and transcendence” written & directed by Justin Peters at The Magnet theatre: A Good Burger Christmas

[FREE] 9:00 pm: It’s comedy host night, with stand-up from Chesley Calloway (co-host of acclaimed weekly stand-up show Comedy as a Second Language), Reid Faylor (co-host of hilarious Creek show Underbelly), Sharon Spell (host of The Big Shrink), Halle Kiefer (host of Splitsider’s Dog and Pony Show), Mike Lane, and Janelle James, all performing at Brooklyn’s Over the Eight (594 Union Ave) hosted by Charla Lauriston (MTV; co-host of School NIght) and Sue Smith (VH1): Free Cable

[TOP PICK] 9:30 ($5): Renowned comedy chameleon and sketch comic Livia Scott (Conan O’Brien, Law & Order, VH1, feature film National Lampoon’s Dirty Movie) spearheads this multimedia sketch comedy show written by Livia, Sal Gentile, and Dylan Snowden, and that stars Livia, Bridey Elliott, Kara Klenk, David Craig, Steven Phillips-Horst, and Dom Manzolillo at the UCB Chelsea theatre: The Livia Scott Sketch Program

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($8): Adam Conover, Natasha Rogers, Alan Starzinski, and Sara Jonsson tell tales about this month’s theme of Holidays, and then hosts Anna Roisman & Katie Haller sing songs they’ve written pre-show about those stories, at The PIT upstairs theatre: You Probably Think This Song Is About You

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Travis Irvine, Stacy Kendro, Jay Nog, Jordon Ferber, Brendan McLaughlin, and Ben Asher 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: NYC stand-ups Casey James Salengo, Raj Sivaraman, Katie Hannigan, Jordan Temple, and Shalewa Sharpe performing sets to be used as audition tapes—so they’ll be trying extra hard to make you laugh—at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Ashley Brooke Roberts: Caught on Tape

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: Sean Patton (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; killer sets on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien, upcoming Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1, feature film Wifed Out; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Mark Normand (hilarious red-hot 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), Jordan Carlos (The Colbert Report, MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Guy Court, VH1), Chris Laker, Josh Gondelman, Erika Wasser, Miguel Dalmau, Josh Adam Mayers, and more performing for this free weekly stand-up show at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Frantic Mondays: Sean Patton, Mark Normand, and More—Free!

10:00 pm ($5): Improv from a veteran Magnet house group consisting of Louis Kornfel, Chet Siegel, Charlie Whitcroft, Dan Fairall, and Quinton Loder: The Boss

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest comics in the world—who aren’t announced in advance, but it’s virtually always a great lineup—at UCB Chelsea hosted by someone wonderful: Whiplash

Monday 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

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, with names drawn out of a bucket at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”), hosted by Julia Wiedeman: Happy Hour Open-Mic Storytelling with Julia Wiedeman

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 Monday 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 Tim Duffy: Comics Phoning It In

[FREE] 7:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show, with 10 comics each performing for 5 minutes, at Brooklyn’s Colony (274 4th Avenue) hosted by Emily Winter: Sparky the Dog Open Mic

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] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Biweekly open mic for telling stories about sex, desire and romance at The Delancey (168 Delancey Street) hosted by Jefferson and tonight featuring guest storyteller Jessie Male: Foreplay: A Sexy Storytelling Open Mic

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

[FREE] 10:30 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

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): If you’re an audience member who loves stand-up, Monday at 11 should be Whiplash! night. 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

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.