NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 2/27/14

February 27, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

This week in TV stand-up, Hannibal Buress performed on Jimmy Fallon
and Ted Alexandro performed on Conan O’Brien

Matt Dennie and Josh Sharp

Matt Dennie & Josh Sharp perform a joy-filled parody that’s one of the best shows at UCB Chelsea: GUMP

Janine Brito

…and Janine Brito performs stand-up at Joe Pera’s weekly event at UCB East: Dan + Joe + Charles’ Show

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] 7:00 pm ($5): 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), Phoebe Robinson (MTV’s Girl Code, Glamour Magazine), Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, MTV), and Negin Farsad (TED Talks) performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Sean Crespo, Dan Wilbur, and/or Katina Corrao: Lasers in the Jungle

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($8): David Carl (Point Break Live, Gary Busey’s One-Man Hamlet) heads a sketch group who are all cast members of the phenom stage show Point Break Live! and tonight will be performing their own wacky material at The PIT upstairs theatre: Hambrick

7:00 pm ($10): Samm Kumar plays 15 characters in this one-woman show at The PIT upstairs theatre: Identity Crisis

[$] 7:45 pm, 8:00 pm, 9:30 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Paul Mecurio, Ali Wong, and James Smith at the 8:00 show; Gregg Rogell, Marina Franklin, and Lenny Marcus at the 9:30 show; and Dave Attell, Jena Friedman, James Smith, Big Jay Oakerson, and Jermaine Fowler at the 11:30 show, with three of the shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) and the 8:00 pm show at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Thursday

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): The Emmy-winning writers of The Daily Show gather on the UCB Chelsea stage to perform an all-improvised show at A Non-Daily Show

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($15): Michelle Buteau (FOX’s Enlisted, Comedy Central, Last Comic Standing, Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central, VH1’s Best Week Ever, The Jenny McCarthy Show; for stand-up video about Utah, sharing, and tits, please click here) performs a one-woman show at the acclaimed Ars Nova Theatre (511 West 54th Street, off 10th Avenue): An Evening With Michelle Buteau

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm-10:00 pm ($7 for the entire evening): The Magnet house improv groups Junior Varsity and Hello Laser performing improv for an hour, followed at 9:00 pm by The Acid Trip (“takes you on a journey through the layers of the mind, where meaning is a relative term and things can get pretty overwhelming…your brain is God”), at 10:00 pm by veteran improvisors making up scenes based on improvised monologues from star storyteller Adam Wade at The Armando Diaz Experience, and finally at 11:00 by improv competition Inspirado (like UCBT’s Cage Match, but with a game-like challenge component): The Magnet’s Night Out

8:00 pm ($10): 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) Kevin McCaffrey (writer for David Letterman; TruTV), and Max Fox performing stand-up at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Griffin Newman and/or Andrew Tavin: The Awooga Comedy Hour

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Stand-ups Oniyide Francis, Billy Prinsell, Mike Brown, and Katherine Williams performing at Poco Restaurant & Bar (33 Avenue B at 3rd Street) hosted by Sooyah Jun, Jawann Carmona, Conor Boylan, and/or Cassidy Kirch: FTH Comedy

[FREE; plus FREE CC] 8:00 pm: A monthly stand-up show that features free cotton candy (“You will laugh and then have a sugar crash”) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Abigoliah Schamaun & Matteo Lane: Free Cotton Candy

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($5): Mike Drucker (hilarious stand-up; staff writer for Jimmy Fallon; freelance writer for SNL, The Onion, McSweeney’s), Ophira Eisenberg (Comedy Central, VH1, Showtime, The Today Show, host of NPR’s trivia/puzzle show Ask Me Another, bestselling book being made into movie Screw Everyone), Sam Morril (Comedy Central), Erik Charles Nielsen, Solomon Georgio, and Drew Michael performing at UCB East hosted by Adam Conover (College Humor, Olde English): Fresh Out

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, Matt Dennie & Josh Sharp prove themselves among the finest writer/performers at UCB with a consistently charming and hilarious version of Forest Gump that covers the entire film in 30 minutes, and features a deliciously funny Jenny played by Brandon Gulya, who also directed, resulting in one of the best sketch shows currently playing on an NYC stage: GUMP

…and in the second half of this double-bill, a musical “based on the true history of the founding of America, in which Jesus Christ embarks on a journey to help build a country that’s courageous, pious, and gun-crazy enough for his precious Constitution…as long as the evil King Barrack Hussein George III doesn’t get in the way,” written by Eric Gersen and directed by John Flynn: Seventeen Seventy-Something

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): Stellar storytellers Elna Baker, Mollena Williams, Brooks Whelan, and host Kevin Allison telling daring personal tales at The PIT upstairs theatre on tonight’s theme Honored for one of the finest storytelling shows in the country: Risk!

[FREE] 10:00 pm: A celebration of the release of Andy Sanford’s comedy album Me the Whole Time, with stand-up guests Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Pat Dixon (Comedy Central Presents, FOX, VH1, E!), Nate Fridson, Maria Heinegg, Chris Laker, Noah Gardenswartz, and Sam Evans at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Me the Whole Time Release Party

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($5): Janine Brito (former staff writer/performer for FX’s Totally Biased), Jermaine Fowler (MTV’s Guy Code and Wildn Out, Comedy Central, Adult Swim’s The Eric Andre Show), and Tony Zaret performing on this weekly stand-up show hosted by the brilliantly surreal and hilarious Joe Pera (for Joe’s one-minute set at Carolines, please click here), Charles Gould, and Dan Licata at the UCB East theatre: Dan + Joe + Charles’ Show

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:30 pm ($6 & 2-item food/drink min.) Comics heckle a genre feature film—with tonight’s victim the 1973 classic Invasion of the Bee Girls (tagline: “They’ll love the very life out of your body!”; for the trailer, please click here)—at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.): Devil Science Theater 3000

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Last week improv group Fuck That Shit continued its pattern of devastating victories, winning against improv group Musk 84-17. Will tonight be more of the same against Big Make Me? Come find out as these teams compete for your laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea for the raucous Cage Match

11:30 pm ($8): “Regular karaoke frightens Tamsi, who finds it terrifyingly socially awkward and cheesy. So she decided to start a show where she gets back at everyone else who loves it. The singers don’t pick their song, some of the lyrics have been changed, and they are competing against all of their so-called friends. Two audience members compete, too! (Sign up right before the show.) Come stand with us, sing with us and jeer with us” at The PIT downstairs lounge for Skaryoke

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

[ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): PIT musical improv veterans mix with musical improv novices on-stage at the downstairs lounge for Pitch

[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 PhoningItInMic@gmail.com 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 info@oldmanhustle.com 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)

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.