NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 3/23/14

March 23, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Fake Church

Fake Church, a show that makes up religions on the spot based on audience suggestions, is among the highlights on this final day of The PIT’s 2014 NYC Improv 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] 2:00 pm to midnight ($10-$15 per show, or $60 for all-festival pass): 18 hours of improvisation at The PIT upstairs theatre and downstairs lounge for this final day of the 5-day 2014 NYC Improv Festival

6:00 pm ($5): A multimedia musical children’s show for adults that’s “part Pee-Wee’s Playhouse and part Satre’s No Exit, exploring what happens when two men-children refuse to grow up and attempt to host a demented kid’s show from their apartment. Expect goofy instructional segments, playing with action figures, some great songs, and nightmarish bloodshed” at The Magnet theatre: Apt. 33

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Sketch, improv, and audience participation, with tonight’s special guest Ali Farahnakian (SNL, owner of The PIT) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Night Out with The Pin-Up Squirrels

[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

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm ($32.75 & 2-drink min.): A hilarious red-hot rising star who’s a staff writer for Saturday Night Live, and has performed on David Letterman, Comedy Central, and VH1, headlining one last night at the Carolines Comedy Club: Michael Che

7:30 pm ($7): Sketch groups Party. and CA$H performing at The Magnet theatre: Magnet Sketch Teams

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00, 9:45 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Judah Friedlander, Ali Wong, Ryan Hamilton, and Jermaine Fowler at the 8:00 show, and Myq Kaplan, Ali Wong, Ryan Hamilton, and Marina Franklin at the 9:45 show, with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Sunday

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Chris Gethard (comedy genius; Conan O’Brien, The Office, Comedy Central, IFC; star of The Chris Gethard Show; author of bestseller A Bad Idea I’m About to Do and Weird New York), Damien Lemon (MTV2’s Guy Code, Comedy Central), Harrison Greenbaum (Comedy Central, Mad Magazine), Chris Laker, and Kat Higgins performing at UCB East hosted by Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon): If You Build It

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Nick Turner (Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central, VH1), Damien Lemon (MTV2’s Guy Code, Comedy Central), Jessica Watkins (documentary Burning Daylight), Mike Cannon, and Taylor Clark performing stand-up at the Three of Cups lounge (83 First Avenue at 5th Street) hosted by RG Daniels: Sunday Night Stand-Up

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Improvisors including Riley Soloner, Dave Bluvband, and many more inject an improvisor into a scripted theatre scene at Brit Pack Studios (153 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor) hosted by group Avid Otter: Gravid Water with Avid Otter

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Marina Franklin (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Chappelle’s Show, VH1), Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, Chelsea Lately, writer for MTV’s Girl Code, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Dive Comedy and Stripped Stories), Jenny Zigrino, and Dean Masselo performing at the East Village’s Beauty Bar for this free weekly stand-up show hosted by Adam Sokol, Brad Austin, and/or Nate Fridson: Comedy at Beauty Bar

9:00 pm ($7): Sketches written, performed, and directed by literally dozens of female comics at The Magnet theatre: Lady Sketch Show

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($15; no min.): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Ali Wong (fearless, razor-sharp, hilarious comedy dynamo; Jay Leno, Comedy Central, FOX, NBC’s Are You There Chelsea?, film Savages), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Pete Davidson (MTV’s Guy Code), and Monroe Martin performing stand-at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander, Ali Wong, Big Jay Oakerson, 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

[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

[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] 10:15 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.