NYC Top Comedy Choices for October 2019: Last Updated Wednesday 10/9

October 9, 2019

I’m one of the finest ghostwriters in the country; my 20+ books include two New York Times bestsellers, a phenom megaseller that hit #16 on Amazon.com and has sold over 330,000 print copies to date, and an interview book with legendary author Neil Gaiman that hit #240 on Amazon.com. I’ve also written five Dummies books and a Complete Idiot’s Guide. I cover comedy as a labor of love. But if you need help with a book, let’s chat, because there’s no one better at ghostwriting, editing, and/or coaching. To learn more about my services, please visit BookProposal.net and then email me at hy@hyreviews.com.

Do you like cross-genre stories (fantasy/comedy, SF/comedy, fantasy/horror, etc.)? Please visit my podcast, Ghosts On Drugs, by clicking here.

Please note that these listings are updated frequently. The best way to be instantly notified about new show postings is to subscribe to this BestNewYorkComedy.com blog and allow for email notifications. Other ways to keep up are to follow me on Twitter (@hybender) or Instagram (@hybenderny), and/or to visit the desktop and ad-free version of this site at HyReviews.com.

In addition, you can use the links below to explore the schedules of all the major comedy venues in NYC; and you can find excellent live comedy recommendations weekly via The New York Times.

That said, my top NYC comedy recommendations for October 2019 (with much more to come soon) include:

The Stand 10-9-19 2.jpgWednesday 10/9: Killer lineup of Bill Burr (legendary comedy force of nature), Mark Normand (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; Conan O’Brien, Stephen Colbert, Jimmy Fallon, HBO’s 2 Dope Queens, Inside Amy Schumer, @midnight, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever; Comedy Central Half Hour, stellar Comedy Central special Don’t Be Yourself, comedy album Still Got It; tours with Amy Schumer), Dan Soder (stellar stand-up; Dudley Mafee on Showtime’s Billions; films Trainwreck, Drunk Parents; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central hour-long special Not Special, Comedy Central Half Hour, Netflix’s The Standups, Inside Amy Schumer, MTV’s Guy Code and Guy Court, VH1; hosts with Big Jay Oakerson Sirius XM’s The Bonfire), Laurie Kilmartin (dynamite stand-up; writer for Conan O’Brien; finalist on Last Comic Standing; Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central, VH1), Derek Gaines (Jaybird on The Last O.G.; former host of MTV’s Broke A$$ Game Show), and Lev Fer (host of the Yung Daddy podcast): Stars at the Stand (8:00 pm, $15 cover and no min., The Stand at 116 East 16th Street)

Colin QuinnWednesday 10/9: A beloved Broadway, TV, and film star (Trainwreck, Sandy Wexler, Drunk Parents), and star of Netflix specials Red State Blue State , The New York Story, and Unconstitutional, tries out new material in an intimate club for his next mass media solo show: Colin Quinn (7:00 pm, $10 plus 2-item food/drink min., West Village’s The Fat Black Pussycat Lounge at 130 West 3rd Street)

Adventures from Shimmering GroveWednesday 10/9: Comics play a game of Dungeons & Dragons live on stage, and “bring it to life through stagecraft and performance,” with Dave Murray, Glo Tavarez, Jason Sweeten, and a guest comic TBA: Adventures from Shimmering Grove: A Live D&D Show (7:30 pm, $5, Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell at 27-16 23rd Avenue)

Robert Kelly 6Wednesday 10/9: Robert Kelly (Louie, Trainwreck, HBO, CBS, two Comedy Central specials, frequent guest on The Opie and Anthony Show) performs a long stand-up set in an intimate venue, with several other talented stand-ups as openers: Robert Kelly (8:30 pm, $10 plus 2-item food/drink min., The Fat Black Pussycat Lounge at 130 West 3rd Street)

Frank ConniffWednesday 10/9: Frank Conniff (TV’s Frank on Mystery Science Theater 3000; Cinematic Titanic) hosts an open mic for MST3K-style riffing on film clips of awful movies. Sign-up is open to all, and riffing happens in randomly assigned groups of three, with no advance knowledge of what’s going to be screened. Whoever Frank and guest judges decide is best will get to riff with Frank at the end of the night: Frank Conniff’s Open Riff Night (9:00 pm, $5 to riff or $8 to just watch, Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell at 27-16 23rd Avenue)

Rebecca VigilWednesday 10/9: Rebecca Vigil (above; powerhouse improv singer; Your Love Our Musical, The Vigilante), Doug Smith (Conan O’Brien, co-host of See You In Hell), Nore Davis (HBO, Showtime, CBS, Comedy Central, MTV, Netflix; album You Guys Are Dope), Rita Sengupta (Buzzfeed), and Brittany Carney perform music or stand-up for hosts Sean Crespo, Katina Corrao, and Matt Little: Lasers in the Jungle (9:30 pm, $12, LES’ Caveat at 21-A Clinton Street; take F/J/M/Z subway to Delancey Street/Essex Street)

Phoebe RobinsonThursday 10/10: Phoebe Robinson (co-star of HBO’s 2 Dope Queens; host of podcast Sooo Many White Guys; Conan O’Brien, Seth Meyers, Broad City, MTV’s Girl Code; feature films What Men Want and Netflix’s Ibiza; author of Everything’s Trash, But It’s Okay and You Can’t Touch My Hair and Other Things I Still Have to Explain) is giving us New Yorkers one last chance to enjoy her national stand-up comedy tour, which runs tonight at Bowery Ballroom and then moves on to venues in California and Philadelphia: Phoebe Robinson: “Sorry, Harriet Tubman” Tour (6:00 pm doors, 7:00 pm show; $35; East Village’s The Bowery Ballroom at 6 Delancey Street)

Andrea Jones-RooyThursday 10/10: Andrea Jones-Rooy, who is a Professor and Director of Undergraduate Study at the NYU Center for Data Science—and also a fire-wielding circus performer—uses data-driven political research to answer such questions as “What does majority rule even mean and what are the consequences of it?”, “Are we actually getting more polarized?”, and “Why, despite the historical records in the midterm election, do so many candidates and leaders still look the same?”: Political Circus: Why Democracy is F*cked (And What to Do About It) (7:00 pm, $15, LES’ Caveat at 21-A Clinton Street; take F/J/M/Z subway to Delancey Street/Essex Street)

MortifiedThursday 10/10: Enjoy a comic excavation of teen angst artifacts (journals, letters, poems, lyrics, home movies, stories, and more) shared by their original authors before total strangers at this popular monthly show: Mortified (8:00 pm, $12, Brooklyn’s Littlefield at 635 Sackett Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Modern WhitneyThursday 10/10: Comics Pat Regan, Lily Marotta, and Tawanda Gona try to figure out and articulate the meaning of a piece of art. Then an actual art expert tells them what the piece is generally considered to be about and its cultural impact. Plus select audience members—maybe including you—will draw their art on the spot and have it interpreted by the comics. According to hosts Matt Hartin & Akmal Tajihan, “This is the only show you’ll want to Van Gogh to:” Modern Whitney (9:30 pm; $12, LES’ Caveat at 21-A Clinton Street—take F/J/M/Z subway to Delancey Street/Essex Street)

Brian Posehn 11Friday 10/11: The wonderful Brian Posehn (hilarious stand-up, comedic actor, and writer; recurring roles on The Big Bang Theory, New Girl, The Sarah Silverman Program, Just Shoot Me, Mr. Show, and more; star of indie film Uncle Nick; Netflix special The Fartist; writer of Marvel Comics’ wildly popular Deadpool; author of book Forever Nerdy) correspondents on The Opposition with Jordan Klepper) graces Brooklyn with his wild wit for one night only: Brian Posehn (7:30 pm; $25, Brooklyn’s The Bell House at 149 7th Street; take R subway to 9th Street or F/G to Fourth Avenue)


Emma Vernon: Friday 10/11: Multitalented rising star Emma Vernon (hip-hop musical improvisor, stand-up, actor, writer, and romance expert) uses her exceptional matchmaking skills to bring together love applicants and have them experience their first dates live on stage…while using improvisors to instantly create the settings for those dates (e.g., a music festival, a bowling alley, under the sea). To get a feel for this long-running monthly extravaganza, please click here, and then nab tickets for In A World: The Dating Show (8:00 pm, $12 online or $15 at the door,, The PIT Mainstage (Striker) at 123 East 24th Street)

Cat Cohen, Lane Moore, Liz Plank, and Scott Rogowsky: Friday 10/11: A show celebrating the app that redefined online dating, with the lovely and quick-witted Lane Moore (above middle; author of bestselling book How to Be Alone; HBO’s Girls; Sex & Relationship Editor of Cosmo; writer for The Onion, McSweeney’s) going on a live Tinder safari for guys while a packed audience watches her every choice with fascination. Offering comments and suggestions are guest comics Scott Rogowsky (bottom row; NBC’s The Voice, WB’s Penn & Teller: Fool Us; host of wildly popular trivia game app HQ Trivia), Liz Plank (right; Senior Producer and Political Correspondent at Vox Media; author of book For the Love of Men), and Cat Cohen (left; Seth Meyers; host of podcast Seek Treatment): Tinder Live (8:30 pm, $18 at the door or $19.51-$22.76 online; Brooklyn’s Littlefield at 635 Sackett Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Christi ChielloFriday 10/11: Two stand-ups each perform a deliciously long 30-minute set, with tonight’s headliners rising star Christi Chiello (above; Comedy Central’s Roast Battle, MTV’s Girl Code, TruTV, PBSKids, stellar solo show It’s Christi, B*tch!, co-host of Battle of the Divas and White Chocolate) and Mary Beth Barone (Viceland; host of podcast Mildly Offensive), all hosted by Gavin Matts (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central): The Half Hours: Christi Chiello and Mary Beth Barone (9:00 pm, $12, The Stand Upstairs at 116 East 16th Street)

Terrorbird sketch comedyFriday 10/11: Surreal sketch group Terrorbird performs a new oddball series of scenes designed to unsettle and delight you: Terrorbird (8:00 pm, $12, The PIT Loft at 154 West 29th Street)

Found Footage FestivalSaturday 10/12: Hilariously oddball amateur VHS videos discovered & curated by Joe Pickett (The Onion) & Nick Prueher (The Colbert Report), with this year’s finds including the 1987 Miss Junior America Wisconsin pageant, a mysterious tape labeled “bonion sergery,” home movies taken at a Canadian hose factory, and a fitness video called Jugglercise: The Found Footage Festival Volume 9 (8:00 pm; $17, Brooklyn’s The Bell House at 149 7th Street; take R subway to 9th Street or F/G to Fourth Avenue)

Carly Ann FilbinSaturday 10/12: Carly Ann Filbin (luminous & delightful sketch comic/comedic actress/writer; on-camera correspondent for Cosmopolitan.com; host of Let Me Break You Up: An Anti-Dating Game Show) explains this comedic game show as follows: “Romance today isn’t what it used to be—swiping, clicking, dick-picing. It’s time we went retro with an old fashioned IRL dating show! Millennials choose their hottie based on how well they answer questions like ‘If you wanted morning sex, how would you initiate it?’, all while I make fun of them because, well, why not? Let’s make some love connections or, at the very least, a one-night stand to talk about at brunch:” Young Hot Sluts: A Matchmaking Show (8:00 pm; $15 at the door or $14.30 online; Brooklyn’s C’mon Everybody at 325 Franklin Avenue—take the G subway to Classon Avenue)

Sydnee Washington & Marie Faustin: Saturday 10/12: Sydnee Washington & Marie Faustin (above) host this live-on-stage taping of their podcast that tests comics on their exceptional knowledge, with tonight’s topic Flirting, and the experts Mary Beth Barone and Jay Jurden: The UnOfficial Expert Live (10:00 pm, $15, Brooklyn’s Union Hall (702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Krystyna Hutchinson and Corinne Fisher: Sunday 10/13: Corinne Fisher & Krystyna Hutchinson (authors of F*CKED: Being Sexually Explorative and Self-Confident in a World That’s Screwed) record their wildly popular Guys We Fucked: The Anti Slut-Shaming Podcast live on stage: Guys We F*cked (7:00 pm; $22.32 in advance online or $24 at the door; LES’ Caveat at 21-A Clinton Street; take F/J/M/Z subway to Delancey Street/Essex Street)

West Wing Writers: Tuesday 10/15: Members of the West Wing Writers group (which includes former Presidential speechwriters) break down their favorite speeches, give behind-the-scenes looks at the speech drafting process, and even lead you in crafting your own keynote speech, all hosted by Chandler Dean (McSweeney’s): SpeakEasy (7:00 pm; $12; LES’ Caveat at 21-A Clinton Street—take F/J/M/Z subway to Delancey Street/Essex Street)

Comic Book ClubTuesday 10/16: Every Tuesday at 8:00 pm, comics creators join super-hosts Alex Zalben, Justin Tyler, and Pete LePage in a lively & hilarious discussion about four-color pop culture, with giveaways of comics and gift certificates: Comic Book Club (8:00 pm, Free!, The PIT Loft at 154 West 29th Street)

Molly Gaebe: Thursday 10/17: Host Molly Gaebe invites female storytellers, comics, and historians to share the tales of “some of the greatest women the world has ever known, but history erased” for this live-on-stage podcast recording, with this month’s theme Women in the Horror Genre tackled by guests TBA: Nevertheless She Existed: Horror Queens (7:00 pm, $17 online or $20 at the door, LES’ Caveat at 21-A Clinton Street—take F/J/M/Z subway to Delancey Street/Essex Street)

Picture This!Saturday 10/19: In this unique show, animators spontaneously bring the jokes of stand-ups Rosebud Baker, Dee Nasty, Rebecca O’Neal, Chanel Ali, and Doug Smith to visual life with lightning speed & wit. Part of the fun is that the comics don’t know what the animators will draw and the animators don’t know how the comics will react. Produced by Sam Varela & Brandie Posey and hosted by Samantha Ruddy: Picture This! (7:30 pm, $10, Brooklyn’s Union Hall at 702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Kaiju Big BattelSaturday 10/26: A modern conflict of epic proportions. Evil villains, menacing alien beasts, and giant, city-crushing monsters threaten to destroy the planet. Who will save the helpless humans from total ruin? The Heroes, of course; plus a few privileged audience members getting in on the action, as they try to contain danger within the three-roped arena of Kaiju Big Battel (6:00 pm, $15, Brooklyn’s The Bell House at 149 7th Street; take R subway to 9th Street or F/G to Fourth Avenue)

You can find the vast majority of notable NYC live comedy shows by using the links below to explore the schedules of the following top NYC comedy venues:

Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Hell’s Kitchen
555 West 42nd Street; 152-seater; one of the most respected comedy showcases in the world; especially strong on improv, sketch, solo shows, and one-act comedic plays; shows free-$12

Upright Citizens Brigade at SubCulture
45 Bleecker Street; What used to be a top comedy venue called UCB East has sadly gone under, but some of its shows live on Friday, Saturday, and Sunday nights at respected East Village indie theatre SubCulture at Bleecker & Lafayette Streets, direclty by the #6 subway’s Bleecker Street stop; shows $7-$14

The PIT Striker (Upstairs) Theatre
123 East 24th Street; 88-seater; a top venue that’s a powerful rival of UCB, and often surpasses UCB when blending comedy with music and/or theatricality; shows free-$20

The PIT Underground (Downstairs) Theatre
123 East 24th Street; 40-seater; often more quirky & experimental than upstairs Striker; shows free-$10

The PIT Loft
154 West 29th Street; 50-seater; the third of The PIT theatres, located separately on the West side, hosts a wide range of comedy, but is especially effective as a home for intimate solo and/or theatrical shows; free-$20

The Magnet
254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; strong on improv, musical improv, sketch, and energy; shows $5-$10

The Creek and the Cave
Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all weeknight shows free; weekend shows free-$10

Union Hall
702 Union Street in Brooklyn; R to Union Street; 50-seat theatre; shows $5-$20

Littlefield
635 Sackett Street in Brooklyn; R to Union Street; 100-seat theatre; shows $5-$20

Bell House
149 7th Street in Brooklyn; R to 9th Street or F/G to Fourth Ave.; 200-seat theatre; shows $10-$25

QED: A Place to Show & Tell
27-16 23rd Avenue in Astoria Queens; N/W to Ditmars Boulevard; 40-seat theatre; shows free-$10

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.

Village Underground
130 West 3rd Street; Comedy Cellar’s larger sister venue, just around the corner with the same top comics; 2-item min.

Fat Black Pussycat Lounge
130 West 3rd Street; Comedy Cellar’s smaller, intimate, and lower-priced sister venue (next door to Village Underground), which serves as its primary home for solo shows and experimental shows—which means it’s sometimes the most exciting choice; 2-item min.

The Stand
116 East 16th Street; Club closest to competing with Comedy Cellar, featuring top stand-ups on a main stage and upstairs stage; 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
487 Atlantic Avenue (near the Barclays Center); only comedy club in Brooklyn; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; some shows have 2-drink min., but many don’t

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.

NYC Stand-Up Open Mics & Improv Jams

If you want stage time, you can find one or more stand-up open mics virtually any night at Manhattan’s The PIT, Eastville Comedy Club, and Stand Up NY Comedy Club, and at Queens LIC’s The Creek and Astoria Queens’ QED.

In addition, at the East Village’s UCB East you can typically find a stand-up open mic Thursdays at 6:00 pm, an improv jam Wednesdays at 11:15 pm, and a rare bring-your-own-group improv/sketch open stage Sundays at 11:00 pm. And in Chelsea, The Magnet offers an improv jam on Wednesdays at 6:00 pm, and a rare musical improv jam on Tuesdays at 6:00 pm.

All of the venues above typically provide you the stage time either for free or for $5.

There are also numerous other open mics throughout the city. For a more comprehensive list, please visit FreeMicsNYC.

Special Thanks to Mindy and Anya

Special thanks to comedy photographers supreme Anya Garrett and Mindy Tucker for creating so many of the stellar photos that grace this site…and the sites of hundreds of NYC comics.

Contact Hy

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible Best New York Comedy (and HyReviews.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.

From comedy & rock goddess Lane Moore (host of smash hit Tinder Live; author of How to be Alone; lead singer of Brooklyn band It Was Romance): Hy Bender lives and breathes comedy. He knows what he’s talking about. Listen.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, provide feedback on my cross-genre short story anthology Ghosts on Drugs, hire me to develop your book or screenplay (please visit BookProposal.net or HyOnYourScript.com), or for any other eason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.

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NYC Top Comedy Choices for Saturday 11/14/15

November 14, 2015

Judd Apatow and Bill BurrDay #5 of the New York Comedy Festival includes Judd Apatow and Friends at Carnegie Hall, Bill Burr at Madison Square Garden, Kumail Nanjiani at NYU’s Skirball Center, Jena Friedman at Union Hall, and Nikki Glaser at The Gerald W. Lynch Theater; for the complete (and extensive) festival schedule, please click here…

Jo Firestone's Firestone FestJo Firestone's Firestone Fest…and Jo Firestone spearheads an all-day party at a former car wash featuring comedy from Mara Wilson, Joe Pera, Naomi Ekperigin, Cocoon Central Dance Team, Julio Torres, Ridgefield Middle School Talent Nite, Dan Glazer, Mary Houlihan, Max Wittert, Mike Abrusci, Michael Wolf, Chris Duffy, and much more: Firestone Fest (Noon-10:00 pm, $20, Hand & Detail at 646 Lorimer Street)

More recommendations for the best in New York City comedy tonight
(in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $10 marked with $) include:

[FREE] 2:00 pm: A rare daytime stand-up show at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue) hosted by Peggy O’Leary & Lindsay Boling: Late Late Breakfast

[TOP PICK] [$] 6:00 pm, 8:00 pm, 10:00 pm, and Midnight ($15-$25; no min.): Typically terrific stand-ups performing at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue, off 20th Street): The Stand Saturday

6:00 pm ($5): Micah Sherman and friends play old men improvising at The PIT downstairs lounge: Old Man Time

6:00 pm ($5): Four Indie improv troupes performing at The Magnet theatre: The Rundown

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): Bonnie McFarlane (HBO, David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central) tries out stand-out material every night this week at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue): Week at the Creek: Bonnie McFarlane

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm, 7:15 pm, 8:45 pm, 9:15 pm, 10:30 pm, 11:15 pm, and 12:15 am ($20-$24 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Some of the finest stand-ups in the country spread among four shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) and the 7:15, 9:15, and 11:15 shows at Village Underground(130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Saturday

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm ($15; sold out of seats, but you might be able to get in if you arrive early and are okay with standing): Ellie Kemper & Christina Gausas used to perform duo improv together. For one night only, they do so again at the UCB Chelsea theatre: Kempsas

7:00 pm ($10): Political activists and pundits mix with comics at this political comedy show that makes fun of the news at The PIT downstairs lounge: Electoral Dysfunction

7:00 pm ($5): Eight stand-ups compete for laughs by telling jokes on topics handed to them just this morning at Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue) hosted by Jenn Welch & Will Neville: The Stand-Up Showdown

7:00 pm ($5): House improv groups Santeria and Improv Frogs perform for an hour at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street): Santeria + Improv Frogs

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($8): Alex Edelman (has opened for Patton Oswalt and Simon Amstell) performs an acclaimed one-man show at Brooklyn’s Union Hall: Everything Handed to You

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): “Created in 1995 at the iO Theater in Chicago, The Armando Diaz Experience is the longest running improv show ever. A guest monologist takes a suggestion from the audience and shares true personal tales. These stories are then brought to life by a rotating cast of improv all-stars—and occasionally Armando himself” at The Magnet theatre: The Armando Diaz Experience

[FREE] 7:30 pm: NYC stand-ups performing at Astoria Queens comedy venue QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue) hosted by Charles McBee: Nerd is the New Black

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: In this acclaimed monthly show, NYC stand-ups “risk getting slapped by Satan himself. Actually, he hosts only bringer shows, but join Matt Wayne and Doug Smith as they step into the Big Man’s shoes and put NYC’s finest through comedy purgatory. Hula-hoops, celebrity impressions, unwanted audience participation, all incorporated into each performance! Will they triumph or will the nether world eat their souls? Come see for yourself in this monthly showcase” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Matt Wayne & Doug Smith: See You in Hell

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Stellar improv groups The Baldwins (which includes Micah Sherman, Sarah Nowak, and Brigid Boyle) and Big Black Car (which includes Katie Hartman, Nate Starkey, Ashley Ward, and Dion Flynn) make stuff up at The PIT upstairs theatre: The Baldwins and Big Black Car

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($24.75 via Goldstar [vs. $29 at the door]): The only FringeNYC show to ever include a barbershop quartet singing about alcohol and three rounds for each audience member (for my full review, please click here) is now playing as a perfect show for a date every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night at the West Village’s Soho Playhouse (15 Vandam Street, in the downstairs Huron Club): The Imbible: A Spirited History of Drinking

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): A freestyle rapping long-form improv group that includes such talents as Evan Kaufman (Your Love Our Musical) takes the stage for nearly an hour at The PIT downstairs lounge: North Coast

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Comics Joanna Rothkopf (writer for Jezebel), Shannon Odell (neuroscience PhD student at Weill Cornell), and Jordan Mendoza (pre-med quitter) get drunk and then compete to present the best scientific dissertation to a panel of genuine scientists at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street): Drunk Science

[$] 8:30 pm ($15): A stand-up who’s appeared on Conan O’Brien and starred in a Comedy Central Half Hour performs at the UCB East theatre: Hampton Yount

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:00 pm ($15): A stand-up who’s appeared on Chelsea Lately and @midnight, and in the film Grand Theft Auto V, performs a long set at the UCB Chelsea theatre: Annie Lederman

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): Sharp improvisors Peter McNerney & Nick Kanellis make up scenes at The Magnet as comedy duo Trike

9:00 pm ($10): NYC stand-ups performing for this weekly show at Brooklyn’s The Experiment Comedy Gallery (20 Broadway) hosted by Camille Harris, Camille Theobald, and Mo Fathelb: The Weekend Drop

9:00 pm ($5): Stand-ups performing at Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue) hosted by Patrick Holbert: End of the Lilne Comedy

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): NYC’s heavy metal version of a sketch troupe, which provides odd, unsettling, and fearless dark comedy spearheaded by such members as Henry Zebrowski (co-star of Wolf of Wall Street). This group won the ECNY Award for Best Sketch Group, was written up by Jason Zinoman in The New York Times, and performs tonight at The PIT upstairs theatre: Murderfist

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): A stand-up show featuring “the dirtiest, most unsafe for prime-time jokes, bits, and riffs” at Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue) produced by Ben Conrad & Lucas Connolly: The Dirty Show

9:30 pm ($10): A sketch comedy troupe that includes Kristen Bartlett & Jason Gore performs at The PIT downstairs lounge: Bridge & Tunnel: A Sketch Show

9:30 pm ($5): An improv show describing itself as “a lights up, lights down, mix-up mash-up, comme ci comme ca, anything goes kinda show” at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street): Dim Wit

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($15): A powerhouse group of improvisors—Zhubin Parang (writer for The Daily Show), Michael Kayne (Baby Wants Candy, Diamond Lion), Langan Kingsley (rising star; sketch group Beige, one-woman show The Dicewoman Cometh), Aaron Jackson (Fuck That Shit, Newsadoozies), Natasha Vaynblat (one-woman show United Federation of Teachers), and Nate Dern (News Editor for Funny or Die)—springboard scenes off interviewing an audience member about his or her love life at the UCB East theatre: What I Did For Love

[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups at this monthly show that describes itself as follows: “Starting in 1982, the city of Atlanta threw an annual party called Freaknik which essentially became the largest black spring break party in the country. The party became so big and wild that the city shut it down for good in 1996. But comedians Andy Sandford and Noah Gardenswartz are bringing Freaknik back…to Long Island City. ‘Comedy Freaknik’ will be a lot like the original Freaknik, except it’s going to happen once a month, and it will be a comedy show hosted by three white guys. That’s basically the only difference” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue):Freaknik

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:30 pm ($15): At UCB Chelsea, improv group Grandma’s Ashes—which includes stellar talents Ryan Karels, Morgan Grace Jarrett, Brandon Scott Jones, and more—takes your written secrets and turns them into very funny improv scenes: Grandma’s Ashes: We Won’t Tell

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Long form improv about the behavior of a theatrical troupe both on-stage and off-stage, revolving around a different show biz theme each month, at The Magnet theatre: The Cast

11:00 pm ($10): With the help of social media, writers & performers put together an entire sketch show from scratch in one intense day and then perform it at The PIT upstairs theatre: Sktch Shw

11:00 pm ($5): Bethany Nicole Taylor & Brittany McDonald perform characters and duo sketch at The PIT downstairs lounge: The Bethany/Brittany Show

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Stand-ups performing at Astoria Queens comedy venue QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue) hosted by Vincent Chang: Last Stop Laughs

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($5): Sharp NYC stand-ups performing at UCB Chelsea hosted by Aaron Glaser: Midnight Stand-Up

[FREE] Midnight: “A psychedelic journey through space-time. The comics on this show have seen the other side. They have surfed the waves of consciousness and mastered their superego to a near shamanic level. They are here to guide you on a quest of understanding and wonder. Also, they’re going to be tripping balls” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue) hosted by Evan Jones: The Only One Tripping

[FREE] Midnight: “Food sketches, street food interviews, and live cooking” at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue): So You Think You Can Rap

Saturday Open Mics and Jams

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early weekly open mic stand-up show (“starts late enough to sleep off that hangover but ends just in time to begin a new one”), with sign-up at 3:30 pm, at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue) hosted by Raj Sivaraman & Sam Evans: The Amateur Hour

[FREE] 10:30 pm: A free all-gal improv jam hosted by all-gal house improv group Gun Club at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street) followed by a free open-to-all dance party: Gun Club Presents: Twat the Night

For tomorrow’s top comedy picks, please click here.

 For many more shows, please click the following links to top NYC comedy venues:

 Best Inexpensive Stand-Up, Improv, Sketch, and Storytelling

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world; especially strong on improv, sketch, solo shows, and one-act comedic plays; shows free-$10)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seater; a top comedy venue that focuses more than sister theatre UCB Chelsea on stand-up and screenings, and on experimental shows taking big risks; shows free-$10)

The PIT Striker (Upstairs) Theatre
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seater; a top venue that’s a powerful rival of UCB, and often surpasses UCB when blending comedy with music and/or theatricality; shows free-$20)

The PIT Underground (Downstairs) Theatre
(123 East 24th Street; 40-seater; often more quirky & experimental than upstairs Striker; shows free-$10)

The PIT Loft
(154 West 29th Street; 50-seater; not at the level of its two sister PIT theatres, but evolving; shows free-$10)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; strong on improv, musical improv, sketch, and energy; shows $5-$10)

The Annoyance Theatre
(367 Bedford Ave. in Brooklyn; J/M/Z to Marcy or L to Lorimer; 50-seat theatre; spinning off from Chicago’s Annoyance Theatre, brings a fiercely fresh, experimental approach to improv and sketch; shows free-$10)

The Creek and the Cave
(Queens’ Long Island City; 40-seat theatre upstairs, 25 downstairs; virtually all shows free)

Union Hall
(702 Union Street in Brooklyn; R to Union Street; 50-seat theatre; shows $5-$20)

Littlefield
(622 Degraw Street in Brooklyn; R to Union Street; 100-seat theatre; shows $5-$20)

Bell House
(149 7th Street in Brooklyn; R to 9th Street or F/G to Fourth Ave.; 200-seat theatre; shows $10-$25)

QED: A Place to Show & Tell
(27-16 23rd Avenue in Astoria Queens; N/Q to Ditmars Boulevard; 40-seat theatre; shows free-$10)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

Comedy Cellar
(117 MacDougal Street; among the finest daily stand-up lineups in the world; 2-item min.)

Village Underground
(130 West 3rd Street; Comedy Cellar’s larger sister venue, just around the corner with the same top comics; 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.)

The Standing Room
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Other NYC Live Shows, Heavily Marked Down via Goldstar:
Click Any Image That Interests You to See the Discount Offer

The Stand

A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder

Kinky Boots

The Imbible: A Spirited History of Drinking

Trapped in a Room with a Zombie

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible BestNewYorkComedy.com…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, submit material to my short story anthology Ghosts on Drugs, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Friday 11/8/13

November 8, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Click for the full schedule of the New York Comedy Festival

Bill Burr

Bill Burr performs at The Beacon…

Whitney Cummings

…and Whitney Cummings performs at Town Hall tonight as part of the New York Comedy 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] [$] The New York Comedy Festival features some of the best stand-ups in the world doing headlining sets in major NYC theatres such as the Beacon, Town Hall, and Carnegie Hall during November 6-11. Among the stars performing tonight are Maria Bamford (sold out), Bill Burr, Whitney Cummings, Kathy Griffin, Charlie Murphy, NIck Swardson, plus an interview with David Cross (sold out, but see directly below). To explore the entire schedule, please click New York Comedy Festival

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [FREE] 6:30 pm: The New York Comedy Festival interview with TV star David Cross (Mr. Show, Arrested Development, Modern Family) at the Museum of Television and Radio is sold out. However, you can watch the live stream from the comfort of your home for free by clicking here at 6:30 pm: An Evening With David Cross

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm, 8:00 pm, 8:45 pm, 10:30 pm, and 12:15 am ($20-$24 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include SNL’s Darrell Hammond at the 7:00 and 8:00 shows, Ali Wong at the 7:00, 8:00, 10:30, and 12:15 shows, Dave Attell at the 8:00 and 8:45 shows, and Julian McCullough at the 10:30 show (CC bookers, more Julian McCullough, please), with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) except for the 8:00 pm show at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Friday

7:00 pm ($8): Dan Hodapp & Natasha Rothwell “bring more than five years of improv collaboration to stage for an evening of bold, committed characters and probably a fart joke for good measure,” and are joined by friends (not announced) performing at The PIT downstairs lounge: Hodapp & Rothwell

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm & 9:00 pm & 11:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by Wil Sylvince (Comedy Central, BET’s Comic View), Maddog Mattern (Sirius Radio, Howard Stern TV; to see Maddog handle a heckler, please click here), and more—hopefully including surprise New York Comedy Festival drop-ins to make up for this weekend’s lack of advertised headliners— performing stand-up at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm ($15): Stone Cold Fox is the only sketch group (vs. improv group) to ever be honored with an ongoing spot on the prestigious UCB Chelsea weekend schedule. It’s earned this slot because its writers (who include stellar comics Brandon Gulya and Silvija Ozols) are terrific, and its cast is superb: Brandon Scott Jones, Molly Lloyd, John Murray, Leslie Meisel, Connor Ratliff, and Johnathan Fernandez. Tonight is the kick-off of a collection of the very best sketches the team has performed since it began in 2011: Stone Cold Fox: The Best of 75 Years

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5): 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), Streeter Seidell (Editor-in-Chief of College Humor; Jimmy Kimmel, MTV’s Pranked), Claudia Cogan (Last Comic Standing, MTV, Logo, here! TV), Sue Smith, and Justin Grace performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Halle Kiefer: Splitsider and Tumblr’s Dog and Pony Show

[FREE] 7:30ish pm: Jim Dodge (Comedy Central), Jay Nog (MTV, AMC), Carrie Gravenson (Pink Collar Comedy), and Tracie Jayne performing at this monthly stand-up show at the One and One Bar (12 1st Street, corner of First Avenue) hosted by Jeff Cerulli and the delightful Chelsea White (MTV, VH1, TLC, co-host of Call Us Crazy): What Else? Comedy

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($16.52 in advance online, $20 at the door): A top-notch theatrical troupe that’s equally fine at compelling acting and split-second comedy uses actual material on the Web, performed verbatim, to craft laugh-out-loud scenes. This 15th edition of the series (begun in 2011) focuses on Fame at the LES’ COW Theatre (21-A Clinton Street): Blogologues: Fame – Show Us Your Tweets. #twerkingtothetop

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10; 2-for-1 tickets): Fearless, innovative dark comedy gal duo Leah Rudick & Katie Hartman (Edinburgh Fringe Festival, FringeNYC) return to The PIT upstairs theatre to create fresh sketch comedy every month, with tonight’s guest Mark Douglas (Web phenom The Key of Awesome): Skinny Bitch Jesus Meeting

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10): Before this Magnet show, audience members may anonymously submit written confessions, secrets, rants, advice and opinions which will be used onstage by the improvisors—who include such talents as Laura Grey (stellar old-time radio style theatrical podcast Horrorgasm, improv troupe Salmon Diane, sketch/improv duo Klepper & Grey): The Friday Night Sh*w

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:00 pm ($15): Cipha Sounds (Hot 97, Chappelle’s Show) thought it would be cool if a hip-hop star told tales and then improvisors made up scenes based on them. This monthly show is the result, with a “secret” music celebrity “mesmerizing the crowd with amazing stories and linguistic darts to spark the creativity of some of the best improvisers in NYC,” the latter being Chris Gethard, Anthony Atamanuik, Brandon Gardner, Phil Jackson, and Abra Tabak at the UCB East theatre: Take It Personal: The Hip-Hip Improv Show

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:00 pm ($15): Chatting about dumb things they and/or their friends have done are hosts Dan St. Germain (enormously likeable and rapidly rising star who has several shows in the works; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half-Hour Special, The Electric Company, MTV, VH1) and Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, MTV), who tonight hang out with friends Baron Vaughn (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour; co-star of USA’s Fairly Legal and Comedy Central’s The Awkward Comedy Show, MTV, VH1) and Andy Haynes (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Last Comic Standing) at UCB Chelsea as part of the New York Comedy Festival: My Dumb Friends

9:30 pm ($10): Two PIT upstairs theatre improv groups making up a musical on the spot, one with sharpness and the other with a friendly greeting: Dagger and Hello

9:30 pm ($8): “Each month the Buttski & Glasscock Talent Agency brings you the best of the worst this small town has to offer. As only two career-savvy former showgirls can, they comb through Craigslist ad after Craigslist ad; but you will determine which act gets a one-year contract.” Tonight’s lucky hopefuls are Amber Nelson (fearless, innovative rising star; Comedy Central; sketch troupe The Prom, co-host of The Dream Show), Cara Kilduff, Lauren Maul, Elke TeeVee Reid, and Kelly Fitzpatrick, all performing comedic characters at The PIT downstairs lounge with host Jenn Dodd: Buttski & Glasscock’s New Talent Blowout

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($10): Singing improvisors at The Magnet using an interview with an audience member to craft The Made-Up Musical

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: A “competitive talk show” to determine the best talk show guest in “a hybrid of two of America’s least respected television genres, talks shows and games show,” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Guy Branum: Talk Show: The Game Show

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:30 pm ($15): Baron Vaughn (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour; co-star of USA’s Fairly Legal and Comedy Central’s The Awkward Comedy Show, MTV, VH1) performs stand-up at UCB Chelsea as part of the New York Comedy Festival: Baron Vaughn for the Hour

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:30 pm ($15): Michelle Wolf (super-likeable dark comic rising star; MTV’s Girl Code, IFC), Samantha Martin (haven’t seen Sam yet but am hearing good things), Ben Kissel (Last Podcast on the Left), and Jim Tews (“clawing his way to the middle for nearly a decade”) performing at UCB East hosted by Brandon Scott Jones, D’Arcy Carden, Justin Tyler, Kelly Hudson, and/or Alden Ford: Gentrify

[TOP PICK] 11:30 pm ($5): A rotating cast drawing from over a dozen of the talented gal improvisors and sketch comics at The Magnet—including Artistic Director Megan Gray, Lauren Olson, Elena Fishbein, Kimberly Ferguson, and Beth Newell—aim to “give you a dark and twisted late night explosion:” The Clubhouse

Midnight ($5): “A live monthly comedy game show in which three contestants participate in a battle of wits and knowledge for the chance to win a grand prize of 20 American dollars” at UCB East hosted by Ryan Simmons: Everyone’s Favorite Game Show

Friday Open Mics

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

5:45 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, running 1 hour. 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] 6:00 pm: An open-mic show on a lottery system (sign-ups happen at 5:45-6:00 pm) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with hosts Erin Lennox and/or Eli Sairs: The Orphanage

[FREE] 7:00 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 Nate Dern, Sarah Tollemache, and/or Paul Oddo: The Friday Night Hot Chicks Open Mic

[FREE] 8:00 pm: An open-mic show that’s first come, first serve, with each comic getting 5 minutes on stage at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City: Mic and Cheese

[FREE] Midnight: This show might not be much fun for audience members, but it’s an amazing opportunity if you want to perform sketch for free and with almost zero hurdles on the prestigious UCB Chelsea stage hosted by members of Maude troupe Moriarty: Liquid Courage

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.)

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.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 5/22/11

May 22, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.

Bill Burr and Simon Anstell

Bill Burr sold out his NYC run before it even began this past Thursday, but an additional show has been added for tonight at 10:30, so you can still see him headlining at Carolines; and right before that, you can catch star comics Ted Alexandro, Simon Anstell (above), and more at Pretty Good Friends

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:

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 4:00 pm & 8:00 pm ($35.50 with discount code BOX): Mike Birbiglia performing a unique blend of stand-up and storytelling that’s one of the best theatrical shows in NYC. For my more detailed write-up, please click here; and then grab tickets at theBarrow Street Theatre (27 Barrow Street, just one block from the #1 subway’s Christopher Street stop) for Mike Birbiglia: My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 5:00 pm ($18.50 online using discount code ADVANCE ): One of the very best shows at FringeNYC 2010 was an award-winning comedy from NYC’s own Faye Lane, a luminous storyteller and singer who will charm your socks off—and possibly give you a moon pie to boot—at the Soho Playhouse’s downstairs Huron Club. This marvelous event recently received a 2011 Bistro Award for Musical Comedy and 2011 MAC Award for Special Production. Please read my review by clicking here, watch Faye make a pecan pie by clicking here, and then take advantage of this revival running Sundays through June to experience the hilarious and unforgettable Faye Lane’s Beauty Shop Stories

[TOP PICK] 6:30 pm ($5): Superb Magnet musical improv troupe Choral Rage performing The Improvised Rock Opera

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10) and 9:30 pm [FREE]: UCBT’s signature improv comedy extravaganza, which typically includes stars in the improv world, and sometimes even TV & movie stars such as Amy Poehler and Horatio Sanz: ASSSCAT 3000

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($7): Ted Alexandro (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, two Comedy Central Presents half-hour specials; frequently opens for Louis C.K.), Simon Anstell (brilliant, charismatic UK comedic storyteller), Nick Flanagan (Toronto stand-up and punk rock writer/singer), and Mike Phirman (musical comic) performing at Brooklyn’s Union Hall hosted by comedy giant Eugene Mirman: Pretty Good Friends

8:00 pm ($5): “Ever watch an improv set and think, Geeze, I want to know everything about how that show came together: What were the performers thinking about? How did they approach each scene? What notes will their coach give them? Yep, us too. Presenting a post-show panel discussion, Q&A session, and debriefing that dissects, explores, and explains some of the ins and outs of improv.” This month’s subjects are PIT house team Borealis and coach Jodi Lennon at The Operation Theater

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Sara Schaefer (inventive, luminous comic; Emmy-nominated staff writer for Jimmy Fallon; VH1’s Best Week Ever), Pete Lee (Comedy Central Presents), Ben Kissel (host of Round Table of Gentlemen podcast), Yannis Pappas, and more performing at RG Daniels’ free weekly show at the Three of Cups East Village lounge: Sunday Night Stand-Up

8:00 pm ($5): Musical improv from troupe Warbucks, plus a second show with no posted information beyond the title: Meaningful Touch

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Alice Wetterlund, Dana Krashin, and Steve Rosso performing atThe PIT’s downstairs lounge for a free weekly show: Cold Soda Comedy

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Matt McCarthy (Comedy Central, AMC, hilarious shorts with Pete Holmes for Front Page Films, national TV ads as Verizon FIOS guy, feature film The Other Guys), Pat Dixon (Comedy Central Presents), Lisa Delarios, Neal Stastny, and Team Submarine performing in the East Village’s Beauty Bar at Vince Averill’s & Jesse Popp’s free weekly show Beauty Bar Comedy

9:30 pm ($5): Improvisors team up with poets at Kiss*Punch*Poem

9:30 pm ($5): Musical/rap improv from troupe The Boombox Kids

[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, MTV, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Dive comedy and Stripped Stories), Leah Dubie (Lesbians of Laughter national tour), and Emily Dickson performing at this free weekly gay-themed show at Therapy hosted by Brad Loekle: Electro Shock Therapy Comedy Hour

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 4 minutes per comic, at The PIT’s downstairs loungehosted by Rob Stern: Vicious Cycle

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] 10:30 pm: A comedy force of nature—tough, smart, honest, hilarious—who is one of the very finest stand-ups ever (for video samples, please click here) performs one last time tonight for this NYC run at the Carolines Comedy Club: Bill Burr

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 5/19/11

May 19, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.

TJ Miller

TJ Miller is at UCBT for a full hour tonight practicing the special he'll soon be taping for Comedy Central...

Bill Burr

...while Bill Burr headlines at Carolines through Sunday (the only day not yet sold out, so buy your tickets fast)...

Cats Talk Back

...and a hilarious 2003 FringeNYC parody (which looks nothing like the above...) is revived for one night only in "Cats Talk Back"

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:

6:00 pm ($5): Three shows auditioning for a regular run on the prestigious UCBT schedule. I know nothing about the first two, but at 7:00 pm brilliant writer/actress Amy Heidt and the hilarious Jeff Hiller debut a show that tells us “It’s time to re-connect with your lover, to open your hearts to each other… and watch the blood pour out:”
Last Resort

7:00 pm ($5): Buoyant all-new sketch from troupe Boat

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): A delightful tale of heartbreak by Leslie Meisel (HBO)—who manages the impressive feat of being adorable, sexy, and hilarious all at the same time, and is a sharp comedic talent very much worth keeping an eye on—quite ably abetted by co-writer Megan Neuringer in one of the smartest theatrical shows to grace UCBT: Love Can Suck a Dick…and So Can I

…and in the other half of this double-bill, Seth Kirschner (30 Rock, Lipstick Jungle) performs a one-man half-hour TV episode parodying 90s sitcoms: Sertainly Seth

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($8): Will Nunziata and Jerry Miller performing a two-man sketch show designed as a love letter to the dystopian films of the 70s, 80s, and 90s:” Dystopia Gardens

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on most recent Last Comic Standing; Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, hit comedy CD Vegan Mind Meld), Sara Schaefer (inventive, luminous comic; Emmy-nominated staff writer for Jimmy Fallon; VH1’s Best Week Ever), and Jamie Roberts performing stand-up at The PIT’s basement lounge hosted by comedic rapper Andrew Singer and the delightful Abbi Crutchfield: Positively Awesome

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): An hour of improv directed by Magnet Theatre co-owner Armando Diaz: Evente

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($35.50 with discount code BOX): Mike Birbiglia performing a unique blend of stand-up and storytelling that’s one of the best theatrical shows in NYC. For my more detailed write-up, please click here; and then grab tickets at the Barrow Street Theatre (27 Barrow Street, just one block from the #1 subway’s Christopher Street stop) for Mike Birbiglia: My Girlfriend’s Boyfriend

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): A celebration of the conclusion of Season 2 of a Webisode comedy by its stars Abbi Jacobson and Ilana Glazer, plus friends: Broad City Live

[FREE] 9:00ish pm: Typically terrific NYC stand-ups performing on this weekly show at the Kabin Bar and Lounge hosted by Chesley Calloway and a guest (while Sean Patton shares his gifts with other cities): Comedy as a Second Language

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:30 pm ($25 plus $15 food/drink min.): One of my all-time favorite FringeNYC shows—a hilarious 2003 play parodying the theatre in general and Broadway musical Cats in particular—is enjoying a revival for one night only as part of the gala FringeNYC 15th Anniversary All-Star Series at the Laurie Beechman Theatre, inside the West Bank Cafe (407 West 42nd Street, off Ninth Avenue): Cats Talk Back

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): TJ Miller (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Opie & Anthony; co-starred in ABC sitcom Carpoolers, TBS’ Very Funny Show; acted in feature films Cloverfield, Get Him to the Greek, Unstoppable) performing a deliciously long set in preparation for taping his one-hour Comedy Central special No Real Reason. This is the last chance to catch TJ performing this material live: TJ MIller Has a Reason for No Real Reason

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): Some of NYC’s top comedic singer/songwriters or bad poets—Corn Mo, Kurt Braunohler, Jay Rodericks, Dan St. Germain, and a “secret celebrity guest”—plus ace sketch/improv comic Matt Higgins performing haiku and Joe Schiappa doing poetry—will rock the house in a show hosted by Nathan Phillips: Dealing With My Feelings

9:30 pm ($5): Sharp improvisors make up one-act plays on the spot in The Scene

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Helen Hong (Logo’s Set-Up Squad), Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents), and Nate Bargatze (Comedy Central Presents) performing stand-up at The Pit for this comedy club-style (i.e., long set) weekly show hosted by Harrison Greenbaum: The Big One

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Vibrant improv troupes Jump on Three and The Curfew competing for audience laughs and votes at the raucous Cage Match

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you know anyone who might have a thyroid problem, please tell them about my new book: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 9/19/10

September 19, 2010

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

Bill Burr

Okay, it's not live on an NYC stage; but god bless Comedy Central for bringing to our living rooms tonight at 11:00 Bill Burr's new hour-long special Let It Go, which should not be missed

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] 6:00 pm ($15): John Oliver and other wonderful comics performing at this final night of the spectacular Brooklyn extravaganza The Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10) and 9:30 pm [FREE]: UCBT’s signature improv comedy extravaganza, which typically includes stars in the improv world, and sometimes even TV & movie stars such as Amy Poehler and Horatio Sanz: ASSSCAT 3000

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Brooke Van Poppelen (brilliant stand-up, writer, and storyteller; blogger for trutV; popular blogs NYisretarded.blogspot.com and RockBottom; for stand-up videos about overindulging at 30 and impersonating Morrisey, please click here and here), Roger Hailes (Comedy Central), Jared Logan (Last Comic Standing), Kevin Mccaffrey (writer for David Letterman), and Matt Donaher performing at RG Daniels’ free weekly show at the Three of Cups East Village lounge: Sunday Night Stand-Up

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Brooke Van Poppelen (brilliant stand-up, writer, and storyteller; blogger for trutV; popular blogs NYisretarded.blogspot.com and RockBottom; for stand-up videos about overindulging at 30 and impersonating Morrisey, please click here and here), Doogie Horner, Damien Lemon, and Joyelle Nicole performing at Brooklyn’s Knitting Factory (361 Metropolitan) hosted by Hannibal Buress (Saturday Night Live, 30 Rock): Comedy Night

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Ray Devito (MTV, Lifetime), Molly Knefel (Naked in a Fishbowl), Alex Grubard, and Emmett Montgomery performing in the East Village’s Beauty Bar at Vince Averill’s & Jesse Popp’s free weekly extravaganza Beauty Bar Comedy

[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Helen Hong (VH1), Calvin Cato (Game Show Network), and Dana Lovecchio (Comedy Central) performing at this free weekly gay-themed show at Therapy hosted by Brad Loekle: Electro Shock Therapy Comedy Hour

[$] 10:00 pm ($31.25 & 2-drink min.) A provocative comedy star who’s written for Richard Pryor, Red Foxx, and Saturday Night Live, and performed on Chappelle’s Show and David Letterman, headlining at Carolines: Paul Mooney

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Saturday 6/12/10

June 12, 2010

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

Maria Bamford

Two of the most breathtakingly funny stand-ups alive, Maria Bamford...

Bill Burr

...and Bill Burr, conclude their headlining runs tonight at Comix and Carolines

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:

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 7:00 pm-2:00 am ($10 per show$40 for the whole night): One of the finest sketch comedy festivals in the country, which concludes tonight—and features such thoroughly wonderful comics as Pangea 3000, Murderfist, festival organizer Alex Zalben’s troupe Elephant Larry…and pretty much everyone at the always memorable closing night midnight show/party: SketchFest NYC 2010

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm & 10:00 pm & midnight ($41 & 2-drink min.): A comedy force of nature—tough, smart, honest, hilarious—who (like Maria Bamford) is one of the very finest stand-ups ever in a not-to-be-missed headlining run ending tonight at the Carolines Comedy Club: Bill Burr

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($26.95 online if you use code VIPJUNE, plus 2-item minimum): A fresh, unique comedy genius who (like Bill Burr) is one of the very finest stand-ups ever in a not-to-be-missed run headlining run ending tonight at the elegant Comix Comedy Club: Maria Bamford

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.