NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 1/12/14

January 12, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Tina Fey and Amy Poehler

If you’re staying home, be sure to catch Tina Fey and Amy Poehler hosting NBC’s 2014 Golden Globe Awards…

Colin Quinn and Myq Kaplan

…but if you’re going out, consider enjoying Colin Quinn, Myq Kaplan, Dave Hill, Michael Che, Jackie Kashian, W. Kamau Bell, and more at the final day of Fontana’s NYC Podcast Festival

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] 3:00 pm-11:00 pm (prices vary for each show; arrive early to nab seats): Colin Quinn, Dave Hill, Michael Che, Myq Kaplan, Jackie Kashian, W. Kamau Bell, Eddie Brill, Claudia Cogan, and more appearing at this second of this weekend’s live-on-stage podcast festival at Fontana’s (105 Eldridge Street): NYC Podcast Festival 2014

3:00 pm ($10): A sketch and stand-up show for kids—with no irony, this is for children aged 4-10—hosted by Mark Malkoff at The PIT upstairs theatre: Two Juice Minimum

[FREE] 5:00 pm: A mix of longform, shortform, and musical improv from five groups, typically including Mishmosh, at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Michael Venzor: The Long and Short of It

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10) and 9:30 pm [FREE]: UCB Chelsea’s signature improv comedy extravaganza, which typically includes superstars in the improv world such as Chris Gethard, and occasionally network TV & movie stars such as Amy Poehler and Horatio Sanz: ASSSSCAT 3000

7:30 pm ($7): Sketch comedy groups Party. American Wormholes, and Baby Shoes perform new material at The Magnet theatre: Magnet Sketch Teams

[$] 7:30 pm ($35 & 2-drink min.): An Iranian-American stand-up headlining one last night at the Carolines Comedy Club: Max Amini

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($25 with discount code SHAKES FB at the door; please note the entire run has SOLD OUT, but the theatre can often squeeze people in if you’re okay with standing): Genius improvisors from Chicago delivering one of the funniest shows you’ll ever see by making up a play on the spot using the language and themes of the Bard. This is the finest improv troupe in the world, and one of the best comedy shows of any kind, anywhere. Tonight’s the conclusion of a four-night NYC run at Theatre 80 St. Marks (80 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue), with every evening utterly different from the last. This is a rare opportunity to enjoy the breathtakingly skilled Improvised Shakespeare Company

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): From the producers of The Scene, improvisors—who tonight are Micah Sherman, Joe Schiappa, and Liz Wisan, and groups You’re Not My Dad and Funkie Todd—make up one-act plays on the spot at The PIT downstairs lounge: Act One

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Kevin Meaney (Saturday Night Live, 30 Rock, HBO, Comedy Central, Adult Swim), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Nick Griffin (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents), Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), and William Stephenson (FX’s Louie, The Chris Rock Show) 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): Kevin Meaney, Gary Gulman, Nick Griffin, Ryan Hamilton, and More

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Alex Koll (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central), Amber Nelson (fearless, innovative rising star; Comedy Central; sketch troupes Murderfist and The Prom, co-host of The Dream Show), Liz Miele (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central, Damaged), Dan Shaki (Sirius XM Radio), Kenny Deforest, and Seth Cockfield performing at the Three of Cups lounge (83 First Avenue at 5th Street) hosted by RG Daniels: Sunday Night Stand-Up

8:00 pm ($5): Sabrina Jalees (delightful dynamo stand-up; Last Comic Standing, MTV’s Failosophy), Matt Koff (writer for The Daily Show), Ben Kronberg (Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, ABC), Jacqueline Novak, Tony Deyo, and Greg Stone performing stand-up at UCB East with host Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon): If You Build It

8:00 pm ($8): “A show where we give reruns the respect the deserve—honoring the good ones, screwing with the bad ones, and generally have a great time with the best sitcom scripts of the ’70s, ’80s and ’90” at The PIT upstairs theatre: The ReRun Project

[FREE] 8:00 pm: “A TV show that airs so late at night, it’s technically the first morning show of the next day on Queens Public Television and streaming on Vimeo.com, anchored by Kevin McCaffrey & Elizabeth Kuchta, with weatherman Jon Daly, and additional help from Jaimie Hughes, Shane Heimann, and guests” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Technically Tomorrow

8:00 pm ($10 & 2-item food/drink min.): Gay-themed stand-up from Danny Cohen (Comedy Central), Emma Willmann, Chris Doucette, Graham Nolan, and Sheba Mason performing at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.) hosted by Adam Sank: Queens of Queens

[$] 9:00 pm ($15; no min.): 9:00 pm ($15): Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Harris Stanton, Chris Cotton, and Bridget Everett performing stand-up, plus music from DJ Roofeeo, at Brooklyn’s Knitting Factory (361 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by the wonderful Hannibal Buress (former staff writer for 30 Rock, Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Louie, The Eric Andre Show, host of Comedy Night, one-hour Comedy Central special Animal Furnace): Comedy Night

[$] 9:00 pm ($15; no min.): Jamie Lee (staff writer/performer for The Pete Holmes Show; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, MTV’s Girl Code, VH1), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Mark DeMayo (retired NYC cop with great stories), Jordan Carlos (The Colbert Report, MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Guy Court, VH1), Joe Zimmerman, and Bill Dawes performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Jamie Lee, Big Jay Oakerson, Mark DeMayo, and More

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Seaton Smith (Opie & Anthony Virus Tour), Doug Smith, Maria Heinegg, and Brendan Eyre performing stand-up in the East Village’s Beauty Bar for this free weekly show hosted by Adam Sokol, Brad Austin, and/or Nate Fridson: Comedy at Beauty Bar

[$] 9:45 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Ross Bennett (David Letterman, Comedy Central, A&E), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Nick Griffin (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents), Keith Alberstadt (David Letterman, VH1, contributor to SNL’s Weekend Update), and Louis Katz (Jimmy Fallon, HBO, Comedy Central Presents) 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): Ross Bennett, Gary Gulman, Nick Griffin, and More

Sunday Open Mics & Open Stages

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early walk-in open-mic stand-up show (put your name in the bucket at 3:45), providing 3 minutes or more per comic at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City: Face-Plant Comedy Open Mic

[ALMOST FREE] 5:00 pm ($1): Sign up at 4:30 pm to do improv with experienced PIT performers at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Sasha Capelli, Eitan Levine, and Shaina Stigler: 10K Jam Jam

[FREE] 5:30 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 3 minutes per comic (unless not many folks show up, in which case there’ll be more time), with names drawn out of a bucket at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”) hosted by Emmy Blotnick, Matt Nedostup, and/or Sachi Ezurafor: Sledgehammer

6:00 pm ($5): Open-mic stand-up that includes professional feedback on each comic’s 5-minute set at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.): Mic-Shop: Open Mic Workshop

[ALMOST FREE] 9:30 pm ($1): Open-mic comedy, with 4 minutes per performer, at The PIT downstairs lounge: Child Support

[FREE] 10:00 pm: The only open-stage show for entire groups of improvisors and sketch comics, running weekly at UCB East hosted by Austin Rodrigues: Bring Your Own Team: Improv/Sketch Team Jam

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Open-mic show for sketch and character bits running 3-5 minutes at The Magnet hosted by Sebastian Conelli. Everyone who signs up—at 9:45 pm at the box office—is likely to get onstage: Sketch in Progress

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)

The PIT
(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.)

Comic Strip Live
(1568 Second Avenue, off 81st; Upper East Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Stand Up NY
(236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; Upper West Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Laughing Devil
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club, with MST3K-style movie night on Thursdays; 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.