NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 8/7/14

For FringeNYC 2014 coverage, please click here

TV Alert: Will Arnett is on Jimmy Fallon;
Mel Brooks is on Tavis Smiley (repeated from 5/16);
Aubrey Plaza is on The Daily Show;
Doug Benson, Steve Agee, and Megan Neuringer are on @midnight;
Joe Machi continues to shine as the breakthrough star
on NBC’s Last Comic Standing

Your Job : The Musical

The Magnet features new improv show Your Job: The Musical

Langan Kingsley

…catch rising star Langan Kingsley in The Dicewoman Cometh….

Dancing Monk Ippen

…and start buying tickets for this year’s spectacular offerings at the New York International Fringe Festival, which starts tomorrow with such amazing productions as the all-Japanese musical Dancing Monk Ippen

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 ($12): Jamie Graham & Amy Larimer blend improv and dance to create theatrical physical comedy and grace on the spot at The PIT upstairs theatre: The Raving Jaynes

7:00 pm ($5): Adam Newman (David Letterman, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, host of Big Long Sets), Naomi Ekperigin (Broad City), Steve Wrigley, and Candy Lawrence performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Sean Crespo, Dan Wilbur, and/or Katina Corrao: Lasers in the Jungle

7:30 pm ($10): “Through audience suggestions of Chapter Title and The First Line of the Chapter, the audience decides what the next chapter will be for the story that the players will create. Will there be glory? Will one of them find their missing cat? Or is death in their future? Come find out as you choose your own adventure” at The PIT downstairs lounge: Writer’s Block: An Adventure You Choose

[$] 7:30 pm ($35 & 2-drink min.): A cast member of the much-missed Chappelle’s Show headlining tonight through Thursday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Donnell Rawlings

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:45, 8:00, 9:30 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s comics include Neal Brennan, Ryan Hamilton, Gregg Rogell, Greer Barnes, and Lynne Koplitz at the 7:45 show; Neal Brennan, Ryan Hamilton, Greer Barnes, and Lynne Koplitz at the 8:00 pm show; and Dave Attell, Mark Normand, Kurt Metzger, Big Jay Oakerson, and Damien Lemon 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): At UCB Chelsea, Langan Dice Kingsley establishes herself as a major UCB talent and rising star in this one-woman show demonstrating playful wit, a dancer’s grace, and vocal gymnastics that may make you concerned Langan hurts her voice (but you’ll want her to keep doing it anyway): The Dicewoman Cometh

…and in the second half of this double-bill, sketch about our national pastime: Baseball is America

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($15; no min.): Sean Patton (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; killer sets on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1, feature film Wifed Out; co-host of Esquire Network’s Best Bars in America; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Mark Normand (hilarious red-hot rising star; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, Inside Amy Schumer, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Pete Lee (Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing), Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), Pete Davidson (MTV’s Guy Code), and Giulio Gallarotti performing at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Sean Patton, Mark Normand, Pete Lee, Joe List, and More

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm-10:00 pm ($10 for the entire evening): The Magnet house improv groups Hello Laser and Junior Varsity performing improv for an hour, followed at 9:00 pm by Your Job: The Musical (improvisors interview an audience member about his or her job and then use that information to create a musical on the spot), at 10:00 pm by veteran improvisors making up scenes based on improvised monologues from Mark Gagliardi (Drunk History) 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

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Mark Normand (hilarious red-hot rising star; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, Inside Amy Schumer, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), John Joseph (Comedy Central, The View), Monroe Martin (finalist on this season’s Last Comic Standing), Hadiyah Robinson (BET), and Nore Davis (Russell Simmons Presents The Ruckus) performing at Poco Restaurant & Bar (33 Avenue B at 3rd Street): FTH Comedy

[$] 8:00 pm ($12): Betsy Kenney, Matt Radlow, and Mark Vigeant perform absurd comedic characters at The PIT upstairs theatre: Scumpunch

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups performing thoughtful stand-up at The Creek’s downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Leah Bonnema & Tim Warner: Modern Day Philosophers

[TOP PICK] 8:15 pm ($10, which includes a free drink): A weekly celebration of the worst writing NYC has to offer, with tonight’s guests Mark Normand (hilarious red-hot rising star; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, Inside Amy Schumer, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Katey Healy-Wurzburg (improv group Detroit), Lukas Kaiser, Seth Cockfield, and Ashley Bez writing on the theme Body Modification at 2A (25 Avenue A off 2nd Street) hosted by Lizzie Martinez, Tim Racine, and/or Emilady Bogue: The “Emily” Show: Body Modification

8:30 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups performing at UCB East hosted by Adam Conover (College Humor, Olde English): Fresh Out

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): Storyteller Lyssa Mandel invites guests to “expose their bleeding-heart adolescent artifacts (journal entries, poetry, original songs, and art), then welcomes them to laugh at and with their own flaws” at The PIT downstairs lounge: The Bitch Seat

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 9:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 260-2445 and mention HyReviews.com, but there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): Rachel Feinstein (finalist on Last Comic Standing; Inside Amy Schumer, HBO, The Apprentice, opens for Sarah Silverman on tour), Ralph Harris (Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, Comedy Central Half Hour, Dream Girls, Evan Almighty), and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): The razor-sharp writers of Late Night with Seth Meyers gather on the UCB Chelsea stage to perform an all-improvised show at Seth Meyers Writers: Crate Night With Set Fires

[$] 9:30 pm ($12): NYC stand-ups (not announced) perform at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Jenny Jaffe (former staff writer for MTV’s Nikki and Sara Live): Camp Time

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($15; no min.): Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Mark Normand (hilarious red-hot rising star; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, Inside Amy Schumer, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Pete Lee (Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Monroe Martin (finalist on this season’s Last Comic Standing), and Crystian Ramirez performing at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Gary Gulman, Mark Normand, Pete Lee, and More

[FREE] 10:00 pm: “Mike Guild knows everything about movies and films. He will take you through the landscape of the cinema, along with comic guests Jake Hart, Will Carey, and Ben Conrad, to discuss everything going on the weird landscape that is Hollywood—plus everyone in the audience will win a unique prize” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Movie Night With Mike

10:30 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups performing at this weekly stand-up show hosted by the brilliantly surreal and hilarious Joe Pera (for a very special one-minute set at Carolines, please click here), Charles Gould, and Dan Licata at the UCB East theatre: Dan + Joe + Charles’ Show

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): The winner of last week’s improv battle goes up against improv group Bookbox, competing for your laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea in the raucous Cage Match

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 the spectacular 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

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Weekly open mic that provides 5 minutes for each audience member whose name is pulled out of a bucket to perform a true story, sketch, or characters at Brooklyn’s Over the Eight (594 Union Ave) hosted by JiJi Lee: Split Personality Open Mic Storytelling & Sketch

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 Junior Varsity 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

[FREE] 11:00 pm: 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 upstairs theatre 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-$20)

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)

This Theater
(154 West 29th Street; new venue that, at its best, features shows comparable to UCB & PIT; free-$12)

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: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible BestNewYorkComedy.com. He is literally the only person in NYC providing daily summaries of what’s happening comedy-wise. It must be exhausting keeping that monster of a website alive…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.

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