NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 9/28/14

September 28, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Deliver Us To Evil

Cyndi Freeman plays The Devil in a Halloween-themed burlesque play about temptation: Deliver Us To Evil

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:

5:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min.): NYC stand-ups (not announced) sit in the audience and “shout out funny questions, comments, or even noises to the host onstage and to each other whenever they feel like it,” effectively becoming their own hecklers, at The Grisly Pear (107 MacDougal Street) hosted by Will Thilly: Noise Factory

[FREE] 6:00 pm: All-gal improv group Pin-Up Squirrels performs and hosts other improv groups at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Play Date 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

7:30 pm ($7): Sketch comedy groups Party. and The Misses perform new material at The Magnet theatre: Magnet Sketch Teams

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($12): Award-winning NYC theatrical group Built for Collapse promises “an evening of freedom, chance, and reactionary tales of unfortunate proportions” at The PIT upstairs theatre: Theater for Your Sleeping Brain

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm, 9:45 pm and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s comics include a great lineup of Colin Quinn, Todd Barry, Gary Gulman, and Mark Normand at the 8:00 show; Mark Normand, Nick Griffin, Colin Jost, Joe List, and Marina Franklin (hosting) at the 9:45 show; and Kurt Metzger, Jena Friedman, Keith Alberstadt, Big Jay Oakerson, Sam Morril, and Wil Sylvince (hosting) at the 11:30 show, with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Sunday

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Superb improvisors and guest improv groups join host Skycopter (which includes the incredible David Carl) to make up one-act plays on the spot at The PIT downstairs lounge: Act One

[$] 8:00 pm ($15): Cherry PItz (Cyndi Freeman) plays The Devil in this burlesque play: “As Halloween approaches, The Devil begins to creep into the Church, pitting Pastor Porkpie in an epic battle against an oncoming storm of sadistic sexiness. Will The Good Pastor save the Soul of Titillation, or will the Church be delivered to evil that very night, leaving Sundays possessed by Dead Sexy all October? You already know the answer…but won’t it be fun to watch it all go to Hell?” at the Church of Titillation (669 Eighth Avenue, between 42nd & 43rd Streets): Deliver Us To Evil

8:00 pm ($5): Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on Last Comic Standing; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, comedy CDs Small, Dork, and Handsome. Vegan Mind Meld, and Meat Robot), Jeff Maurer, Brad Austin, Ryan Reiss, Kristin Rand, Tyson Karrasch, and Julia Johns performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon): If You Build It

8:00 pm ($5): Stand-up from Ben Asher and John Swan, characters from Tynan DeLong, sketch from Lana Schwartz, musical sketch from Pop Roulette, and comedic counseling from Viviana Cortez, all performing at Brit Pack Studios (153 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor) hosted by Ali Levin: Sunday Sessions

[DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($15; no min.): Monroe Martin (finalist on this season’s Last Comic Standing), Kareem Green, Subhah Agawrwal, Kenan Weaver, and hosts Amanda Seales (VH1) & Marc Lamont Hill performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Smart, Funny, and Black

9:00 pm ($7): “A multimedia musical kids show for adults that’s part Pee-Wee’s Playhouse and part Sartre’s No Exit explores what happens when two men-children refuse to grow up and attempt to host a demented kid’s show from their apartment,” starring Alan Fessenden (improv groups The Weave and Hello Laser) and Louie Pearlman (The Story Pirates), and featuring Lauren Olson, Douglas Widick, and more at the Magnet theatre: Apt. 33

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Charles Gould, Brian Parise, Joe Zimmerman, Joyelle Nicole Johnson, and Greg Stone performing stand-up at the East Village’s Beauty Bar for this free weekly show hosted by Adam Sokol, Brad Austin, and/or Nate Fridson: Comedy at Beauty Bar

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:30 pm ($12): Superb improvisors Natasha Rothwell (SNL), Micah Sherman, and more make up theatrical scenes at The PIT upstairs theatre: People Improvising

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($15; no min.): Chris Gethard (comedy genius; Broad City, Conan O’Brien, The Office, IFC; star of The Chris Gethard Show; author of A Bad Idea I’m About to Do and Weird New York, plus My Comedy Album), Todd Barry (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, FX’s Louie, HBO’s Flight of the Conchords and Bored to Death, Adult Swim, co-star of feature film The Wrestler, star of delightful documentary The Crowd Work Tour), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Aaron Berg (TV series 24 Hour Rental, documentary A Universal Language), and Subhah Agarwal performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Chris Gethard, Todd Barry, Gary Gulman, and More

[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups attempt to “out-filth each other in this show where no punches are pulled and no topics are off limits” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Luis J. Gomez: The Dirt

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 hosted by James Ferrarella: Face-Plant Comedy Open Mic

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

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

9:30 pm ($3): Open-mic comedy, with 3-5 minutes per walk-in performer who signs up (first come, first serve) at The PIT downstairs lounge, hosted by Will Neville: Amateur Night At The Gemini

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

[FREE] 10:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show (sign up is at 9:45 pm) providing 5 minutes for each comic whose name is pulled from the bucket at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Christi Chiello: Lance Bass Space Mic

[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

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: 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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NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 8/6/14

August 6, 2014

For FringeNYC 2014 pre-fest coverage, please click here.

TV Alert: Bill Murray is on David Letterman (repeated from 4/2);
Mel Brooks is on Tavis Smiley (repeated from 5/15);
Ron Funches is on Chelsea Lately;
Sam Morril is on Conan O’Brien;
Kurt Braunohler, Jason Biggs, and Jessimae Peluso are on @midnight;
and don’t miss Kumail Nanjiani’s & Jonah Ray’s superb new
stand-up show The Meltdown at 12:30 am on Comedy Central,
which tonight includes a set from Chris Hardwick

Cyndi Freeman

Storyteller and burlesque performer Cyndi Freeman debuts a one-woman show that draws analogies…

Bigfoot

…between her childhood reputation being smeared and her obsession with pop culture hoaxes at I Was a Sixth Grade Bigfoot

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:

[FREE] 7:00 pm to midnight: Five free hours of improvisation at The PIT upstairs theatre: Super Free Wednesday

7:00 pm to 12:30 am ($7 for the entire evening): Five and a half hours of improv from eight groups, including a free improv jam at 11:30, at The Magnet theatre: Magnet Megawatt

7:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min.): NYC stand-ups (not announced) sit in the audience and “shout out funny questions, comments, or even noises to the host onstage and to each other whenever they feel like it,” effectively becoming their own hecklers, at The Grisly Pear (107 MacDougal Street) hosted by Will Thilly: Noise Factory

7:30 pm ($5): Expanding the UCB longform improv showcased on Harold Night is this weekly show at UCB East which tonight features house groups Buchanan, Astronomy Club, and Big Revival: Lloyd Night

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm, 9:45 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s comics include Michael Che, Gregg Rogell, and Judy Gold at the 8:00 show; Michael Che and Greer Barnes at the 9:45 show; and a strong lineup of Neal Brennan, Date Attell, Ryan Hamilton, Marina Franklin (hosting), and Zainab Johnson at the 11:30 show, with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Wednesday

[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), Dan Soder (smart, edgy rising star; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1; for set about being a hypochondriatic drug user, please click here), Jessica Kirson (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, HBO, Showtime, Bravo, VH1, Logo one-woman show My Cookie’s Gone), Jim Florentine (Comedy Central, MTV), Chris Distefano (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV2’s Guy Code), and Jason Lawhead performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Sean Patton, Dan Soder, Jessica Kirson, and More

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, a one-man show from Christian Capozzoli: Nutso Facto; and then sketches from group BOAT

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Jessica Kirson (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, HBO, Showtime, Bravo, VH1, Logo one-woman show My Cookie’s Gone), Jess Wood (HBO’s Def Comedy Jam), Jaqi Furback (VH1, Oxygen) Mick Diflo, Sooyah Jun, Katherine Williams, and Ayanna Dookie performing stand-up at the Producer’s Club (358 West 44th Street) produced by Henry Cruz & Keith Fuerstenberg and hosted by Monica Vida: Train Wreck Stand-Up

8:00 pm ($10): Solo character comedy, sketch, and/or music from a variety of comics, with Jenn Dodd hosting this parody of a talent contest at The PIT downstairs lounge: Buttski & Glasscock’s New Talent Blowout

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Amber Nelson (fearless, innovative rising star; Comedy Central; sketch troupes Murderfist and The Prom, co-host of The Dream Show), Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, MTV), Missy Baker, Max Cohen, Anthony P. DeVito, Dan Perlman, and Matt Schwartzer performing stand-up, plus improv from groups Teen Cousin and Mayr’s Plays ers, at the Revision Lounge (219 Avenue B, between 13th & 14th Streets) hosted by Gary Levitt & Matt Schwartzer: I Don’t Get It Stand-Up

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Stand-up teams from all over the country compete for laughs at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Benel Germosen: Border Wars

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): Cyndi Freeman (Moth StorySlam champion, two-time FringeNYC award winner, burlesque performer) debuts a one-woman storytelling show that conflates her girlhood obsession with Bigfoot with her enduring a smear campaign from classmates at Under St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue): I Was a Sixth Grade Bigfoot: A Story About Bullies, Monsters, and Hoaxes

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Jared Logan (rising star; Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing, CNN, TBS), Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central’s The Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award), Ben Kronberg (Jimmy Kimmel, Seth Meyers, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, ABC; clash with Roseanne on this season’s Last Comic Standing led to #gofuckyourselfBen), Katina Corrao (HBO, Comedy Central’s Broad City, VH1, co-host of Lasers in the Jungle), Mike Dobbins (unique stream-of-consciousness stand-up), Tyler Fischer (NBC’s America’s Got Talent), George Gallo (Comedy Central), and Drew Michael performing at this free weekly stand-up show at Lucky Jack’s Pub (129 Orchard Street) produced by Kyle Fincham, Lance Weiss, and Brendon Fitzgibbons: Gandhi, Is That You?

[TOP PICK] 9:15 pm ($5): The instructors of UCB’s classes include some of the finest improvisors in the country. In this new weekly show a bunch of them get on stage at UCB East, along with hosts Betsy Stover and Ari Voukydis: Hot for Teacher: The UCB Faculty Show

9:30 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, four attractive young women—including rising star Abby Holland (VH1’s Best Night Ever, musical improv groups Dagger, Aquarius, and Veal)—perform a sketch show that’s inconsistent but entertaining overall for an initial effort, directed by the brilliant Ellena Chmielewski: Fuck Judy Towers

..,and in the second half of this double-bill, a one-man show about “the ins and outs of the African American experience:” The Black Experience with Jonathan Braylock

[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups do sets “and then have a discussion about what’s going on in the world and the mysteries of life” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City, hosted by Chris Laker: The Show

[TOP PICK] 10:15 pm ($5): Stellar improvisors Charlie Todd & Kevin Hines provide color commentary on improv sets by other top improvisors at UCB East for this monthly event: Play by Play

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Leslie Meisel & Kate Riley chose UCB comics to write sketches for the opposite sex, then cast and directed the scripts. Tonight’s show is the result of this fun experiment at the UCB Chelsea theatre: He Said, She Said: A Sketch Show

Wednesday 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: A character-based open-mic happening weekly at UCB East hosted by Sean Hart: Don’t Be Yourself: Character Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open mic stand-up show that provides each performer whose name is pulled from a bucket 5 minutes on stage at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Kaity Neagle & Irene Hartmann: Ragtag Team Open Mic Stand-Up

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open mic stand-up for 15 comics performing for 5 minutes each at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.)—with drinks at half price: Happy Hour Open Mic

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

6:30 pm (no cover, 1-drink min. for comics): Walk-in open mic providing 7 minutes per stand-up at the Phoenix Bar (447 East 13th Street) hosted by Lisa Harmon: Lisa’s Clubhouse

10:15 pm ($5): Randomly selected UCBT students perform with UCBT improv veterans at the UCB East theatre: The Lottery

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Open mic stand-up running until 1:00 am, with time divided evenly between performers (up to five minutes), at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City with host Rob Stern: Bucket ‘O Buckets

11:00 pm ($3): Open mic stand-up show, with its 90 minutes split evenly among the comics who throw their names into a bucket, at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Eagle Witt: Amateur Night At The Mercury

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Your chance to perform on stage with experienced improvisors at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Bernard Maynore & Patrick Cucuta: Improdome

[FREE] 11:15 pm: Your opportunity to perform on the stage of UCB East with improv veterans, hosted by UCBT Harold Night house group Bucky and DJ Cipha Sounds: The Improv Jam

[FREE] 11:30: Sign up at 11:00 pm for the opportunity to make up scenes at The Magnet with veteran improvisors: Magnet Improv Mixer

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.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 5/28/14

May 28, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

TV Alert: Lewis Black is on Seth Meyers

Steve Buscemi

Movie & TV star Steve Buscemi is among the guests at Brooklyn’s Running Late With Scott Rogowsky

Matt Dennie

…Matt Dennie (above) and Josh Sharp perform one of the best sketch/parody shows in NYC: GUMP

Game of Tassels

…and Cherry Pitz spearheads a burlesque tribute to the best show on TV: Game of Tassels

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:

[FREE] 7:00 pm to midnight: Five free hours of improvisation at The PIT upstairs theatre: Super Free Wednesday

7:00 pm to 12:30 am ($7 for the entire evening): Five and a half hours of improv from eight groups, plus a free improv jam at 11:30, at The Magnet theatre: Magnet Megawatt

7:30 pm ($5): Expanding the UCB longform improv showcased on Harold Night is this weekly show at UCB East which tonight features house groups Slinky Dog and Astronomy Club: Lloyd Night

[TOP PICK] 8:00 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, sketch about our national pastime: Baseball Is America

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): A burlesque tribute to Game of Thrones at The Slipper Room (167 Orchard Street) spearheaded by Cherry Pitz (a.k.a. sharp storyteller Cyndi Freeman): Hotsy Totsy Burlesque: Game of Tassels

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($6.63 in advance online or $8 at the door): Storytellers Dan Kennedy (author of Rock On, host at The Moth), Colleen Werthmann (comedy writer For The Oscars; actress in Bloody Bloody Andrew Jackson), Maggie Serota (writer for The Onion’s AV Club), Alison Leiby (host of It’s A Long Story), and Joel Kim Booster telling true tales of harsh reality at The Bowery Electric (327 Bowery, off 2nd Street) hosted by Blaise Allysen Kearsley: How I Learned It’s Not Like In the Movies

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm, 9:45 pm, and 11:30 pm ($10-$14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam) hosts all shows, which include Gary Gulman and Gregg Rogell at 8:00; an all-star lineup of Neal Brennan, Dave Attell, Greer Barnes, Ryan Hamilton, and Dov Davidoff at 9:45; and Mark Normand, Nikki Glaser, and Big Jay Oakerson at 11:30, with all three shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Wednesday

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($15; no min.): Nick DiPaolo (star stand-up, with numerous appearances on David Letterman, Jay Leno, Louie; Emmy-nominated comedy writer, talk show host), Nikki Glaser (former co-star of MTV’s The Nikki and Sara Show; Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Last Comic Sanding, Comedy Central Half Hour; podcast You Had to Be There), Christian Finnegan (Conan O’Brien, co-star of TBS’ Are We There Yet?; three Comedy Central specials; MSNBC, VH1’s Best Week Ever, Chappelle’s Show, The Today Show), and Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central) performing at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Nick DiPaolo, Nikki Glaser, Christian Finnegan, and Joe List

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: A monthly show in which “stand-ups throw their set lists out the window for a night of wild riffing. Comics premiere a story that they’ve never told anyone, improvise a stand-up set based on an audience suggestion, or rant off the cuff. Also expect freestyling and musical improv in an anything goes atmosphere that makes for a one-of-a-kind experience.” Tonight’s comics are Mike Dobbins (unique stream-of-consciousness stand-up), Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV, TruTV), Danny Cohen (Comedy Central) , and Myka Fox (Keith and the Girl)—plus music from powerhouse improv singer Rebecca Vigil (The Vigilante) and improv rap group North Coast—performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Carolyn Castiglia: Rifftown

8:00 pm ($8): Brilliant writer Meggie Spellman (UCBT’s The Prom), Brigid Boyle, Amanda Peck, Michelle Ciotta, and Krista Jensen are tonight’s guests at this new talk show at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Anne Victoria Clark: The Pretty Late Show

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Hari Kondabolu (David Letterman, Comedy Central), Subhah Agarwal, and Brendan Fitzgibbons performing stand-up, plus music from ThE DaN and The Emily Miele Band, all at Brooklyn’s Legion Bar (790 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by comic Liz Miele and singer/songwriter Emily Miele: The Miele Sisters Variety Show

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($8 at the door or $9.57 online): Movie & TV star Steve Buscemi (HBO’s Boardwalk Empire and The Sopranos, and tons of other credits), Brooks Wheelan (cast member of Saturday Night Live), Adam Resnick (David Letterman, The Larry Sanders Show), Peter Rosenberg (Hot 97), Dale Seever (host of Dale Radio), and Katie Nolan being interviewed and/or performing at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) hosted by Scott R.: Running Late With Scott Rogowsky

[FREE] 8:30 pm: Mike Lawrence (nerd persona but razor-sharp mind has made this stand-up a rapidly rising star; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up, comedy album Sadamantium), Peggy O’Leary, Andrew Short, Ken Schultz, Carlos Valencia, and Chip Dwyer performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Over the Eight (594 Union Ave) hosted by Joe Zimmerman, Jono Zalay, and Taylor Ketchum: Hot Crowd: Mike Lawrence and More

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): The instructors of UCB’s classes include some of the finest improvisors in the country. In this weekly show a bunch of them get on stage at UCB East, along with hosts Betsy Stover and Ari Voukydis: Hot for Teacher: The UCB Faculty Show

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on most recent Last Comic Standing; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, comedy CDs Small, Dork, and Handsome. Vegan Mind Meld, and Meat Robot), Carmen Lynch (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing finalist, Comedy Central), Mike Vecchione (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Howard Stern), Reese Waters (David Letterman), Kat Timpf (FOX), Zach Sherwin (MC Mr. Napkins), Christian Polanco, Robby Slowik, and Steve Serra performing stand-up at this free weekly show at Lucky Jack’s Pub (129 Orchard Street) produced by Kyle Fincham, Lance Weiss, and Brendon Fitzgibbons: Gandhi, Is That You?

[$] [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): Josh Gondelman and Kevin Avery (staff writers for HBO’s Last Week Tonight With John Oliver), Megan Neuringer (HBO’s Flight Of The Conchords, Comedy Central’s Kroll Show, @midnight, FOX’s Fringe, VH1’s Best Week Ever, MTV; freelance writer for Jimmy Fallon), Ron Krasnow, and host Alex Brizel performing stand-up at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[TOP PICK] 9:30 ($5): Renowned comedy chameleon and sketch comic Livia Scott (Conan O’Brien, Law & Order, VH1, feature film National Lampoon’s Dirty Movie) spearheads a multimedia sketch production with the help of a small army of writers (including Meghan O’Neill) and performers who tonight include Ann Carr and Adam Wade at the UCB East theatre: The Livia Scott Sketch Program

9:30 pm ($8): David Carl (Point Break Live, Gary Busey’s One-Man Hamlet), Gina Fitch, and Keith Panzarella are the guests for this talk show at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Jamie Aderski & Cayla Merrill: Sharon and Cheryl’s Bosom Buddies Talk Show

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): Improvisors pair up for one night only, tonight featuring superb improvisors and hosts Dan Hodapp & Natasha Rothwell, plus Connor Ratliff & Cathryn Mudon, Christina Gausas & Rachel Rachael Mason, and Andrew Law & Allison Rich, all performing at the UCB East theatre: Couples Skate

[TOP PICK]10:00 pm ($15; no minimum): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody) performs with some friends at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander and Friends

[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups do sets “and then have a discussion about what’s going on in the world and the mysteries of life” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City, hosted by Chris Laker: The Show

[FREE] 11:00 pm: As many as a dozen comics packed into 75 minutes performing stand-up, improv, sketch, and occasionally acts that defy categorization. The level of talent can vary wildly, but for some, like me, that’s part of the laid-back fun. (For tonight’s lineup, hosted by Gary RIchardson, please click here.) Come support the experimentation, and periodic magical surprises, that this uniquely organic rollercoaster of a weekly show at UCB Chelsea makes possible—and don’t forget to toss $1 in the bucket on your way out: School Night

11:00 pm ($10): Chris Aurilio performs a one-man show at The PIT downstairs lounge: Chris Aurilishow

Wednesday 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: A character-based open-mic happening weekly at UCB East hosted by Sean Hart: Don’t Be Yourself: Character Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open mic stand-up show that provides each performer whose name is pulled from a bucket 5 minutes on stage at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Kaity Neagle & Irene Hartmann: Ragtag Team Open Mic Stand-Up

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open mic stand-up for 15 comics performing for 5 minutes each at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.)—with drinks at half price: Happy Hour Open Mic

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

6:30 pm (no cover, 1-drink min. for comics): Walk-in open mic providing 7 minutes per stand-up at the Phoenix Bar (447 East 13th Street) hosted by Lisa Harmon: Lisa’s Clubhouse

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 Wednesday 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 Lizzie Martinez: Comics Phoning It In

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: This weekly two-hour open mic storytelling show allows each performer 8 minutes to tell a compelling and funny tale at Queens LIC’s The Creek downstairs lounge hosted by Jake Hart : The Dump

10:30 pm ($3): Biweekly open mic stand-up, with each comic getting an unusually long 6-10 minutes, at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by James III & Jamie LeeLo: Hump Day

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Open mic stand-up running until 1:00 am, with time divided evenly between performers (up to five minutes), at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City with host Rob Stern: Bucket ‘O Buckets

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Your opportunity to perform on the stage of UCB East with improv veterans, hosted by UCBT Harold Night house group Bucky and DJ Cipha Sounds: The Improv Jam

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Your chance to perform on stage with experienced improvisors at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Bernard Maynore & Patrick Cucuta: Improdome

[FREE] 11:30: Sign up at 11:00 pm for the opportunity to make up scenes at The Magnet with veteran improvisors: Magnet Improv Mixer

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.

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.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 3/27/14

March 27, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

If you missed Todd Barry on TV this week, catch  his set
on Conan O’Brien here and his birthday on @midnight here;
and buy Todd’s new comedy tour video here

Cyndi Freeman

Cyndi Freeman is among the colorful ace storytellers at Leslie Goshko’s Sideshow Goshko

Ali Wong

…and Ali Wong, Aparna Nancherla, and other stellar stand-ups raise money for an injured colleague at A Benefit Show For Liza Dye

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] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Storytellers Cyndi Freeman (Moth StorySlam champion, two-time FringeNYC award winner, burlesque performer , co-host of And I Am Not Lying and The Standard Issues), Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, Chelsea Lately, writer for MTV’s Girl Code, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Dive Comedy and Stripped Stories), and Diana Spechler (author of Skinny) performing at this wonderful monthly oddball storytelling show at the KGB Bar (85 East 4th Street, off Second Avenue) hosted by the lovely Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Sirius XM, Huffington Post) and featuring such charms as a trivia contest with alcoholic prizes: Sideshow Goshko

[TOP PICK]7:00 pm ($8): Storytellers Jefferson, Lori Baird, and Paul Swartz tell tales about “times in our lives that we wish we could take back, that make us feel icky and weird and gross and clumpy; times that hurt to talk about because they are irreversible” at The Tank Theater (151 46th Street, between 6th and 7th Avenues): Bad Feelings: Not Proud of It

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($8): Using real horror films purchased in local gas stations and bodegas, the hosts select specific clips to play for 30 seconds, pause, and then ask the improvisers to finish the scene. Will anyone survive at The PIT downstairs lounge? Attend at your own peril with hosts J. W. Crump and Jordan Hirsch: Gas Station Horror

7:00 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), Nick Turner (Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central, VH1), Greg Stone, Tim Dillon, and Raj Sivamaran performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Sean Crespo, Dan Wilbur, and/or Katina Corrao: Lasers in the Jungle

7:00 pm ($10): All-gal improv group Gilda, plus guest group Theme From Jurassic Park, make up scenes at The PIT upstairs theatre: Gilda’s Date Night

[$] 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 Ali Wong and Marina Franklin at the 7:45 show; Ali Wong and James Smith at the 8:00 show; Ali Wong, Joe Matarese, and Andy Hendrickson at the 9:30 show; and Dave Attell, James Smith, and Wil Sylvince 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 ($15): Ali Wong (fearless, razor-sharp, hilarious comedy dynamo; Jay Leno, Comedy Central, FOX, NBC’s Are You There Chelsea?, film Savages), Aparna Nancherla (delightfully wry, razor-sharp stand-up; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, former writer/performer for FX’s Totally Biased), Michelle Wolf (staff writer for Seth Meyers; MTV’s Girl Code, IFC), Murderfist (NYC’s fearless heavy metal version of a sketch troupe; winner of the 2010 ECNY Award), Jermaine Fowler (MTV’s Guy Code and Wildn Out, Comedy Central, Adult Swim’s The Eric Andre Show), Phoebe Robinson (MTV’s Girl Code, Glamour Magazine), and Sue Smith (VH1’s Best Week Ever) performing stand-up or sketch to raise funds to pay fellow comic Liza Dye’s hospital bills (while her left leg recovers from her being struck by a subway train) at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) hosted by Justin Perez & Naomi Ekperigin: #HelpLiza: A Benefit Show For Comedian Liza Dye

[TOP PICK]8:00 pm ($10): Mark DeMayo performs a one-man show about his 20 years as an NYC cop—which he then traded for a career in stand-up—at The PIT upstairs theatre directed by Peter Michael Marino: 20 & Out

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Sharp comic Alan Starzinski (Sandino, Fat Penguin) performs a clever one-man sketch show in which he plays characters ranging from Aquaman to Gary Busey to the rescue pilot at the end of Jurassic Park at the UCB Chelsea theatre: Guys You Love to Hate

…and in the second half of this double-bill, sketch from gal duo Samantha Schecter & Becky Chicoine, with some help from Kelly Harper and director Matt Dennie: Womantown

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($15; no min.): Chris Gethard, Dan St. Germain, Adrienne Iapalucci, Sam Morril, Stuckey & Murray, and more audition their stand-up skills for TV at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Auditions for Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm-10:00 pm ($7 for the entire evening): The Magnet house improv groups The Boss and Hello Laser performing improv for an hour, followed at 9:00 pm by Genus ((long form improv that takes the suggestion of a genre and then improvises an entire show in that genre), at 10:00 pm by veteran improvisors making up scenes based on improvised monologues from storyteller Rob Penty 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 ($5): A “special” guest, plus stand-ups Matteo Lane, James Patterson, and Billy Dotter performing at this show for stand-up plus sketch at Brooklyn’s Splitty (415 Myrtle Avenue) hosted by Larry Murphy (brilliant voiceover actor for FOX’s Bob’s Burgers, Comedy Central’s Ugly Americans, Adult Swim’s Assy McGee and Home Movies, and numerous other shows) and/or Greg Johnson (Sirius XM): Myrtle Comedy

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Liz Miele (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central, Damaged), Jeffrey Joseph (Jay Leno, HBO, FOX’s In Living Color, Comedy Central), Greg Stone, and Rogin Kim performing stand-up at Poco Restaurant & Bar (33 Avenue B at 3rd Street) hosted by Sooyah Jun and/or Jawann Carmona: FTH Comedy

8:30 pm ($5): Jason Saenz (Comedy Central, sketch troupe Onassis, co-host of Late Night Trash), Kevin Barnett (MTV’s Guy Code, Comedy Central, Sleepwalk With Me, College Humor), John Early (30 Rock), Ryan McKee (blogger for MTV’s Guy Code), Hadiyah Robinson, and Alex Edelman performing at UCB East hosted by Adam Conover (College Humor, Olde English): Fresh Out

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): Jeff Simmermon (NPR’s The American Life, Moth StorySlam Champion, host of And I Am Not Lying), Sean Crespo (co-host of Lasers in the Jungle), and Kate Greathead telling daring personal tales at The PIT upstairs theatre on tonight’s theme Freedom for one of the finest storytelling shows in the country: Risk!

[TOP PICK] 9:30 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] [$] 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), Carmen Lynch (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing finalist, Comedy Central), Sam Morril (Comedy Central), Monroe Martin, and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander, Carmen Lynch, and More

[FREE] 10:00 pm: A monthly comedy variety show featuring sketch, character bits, and stand-up at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Anthony Apruzzese: Comedic Information

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($5): 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, with tonight’s guest comics TBA: Dan + Joe + Charles’ Show

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Last week improv group Fuck That Shit won its 8th victory in a row by virtually obliterating team Detroit with a score of 127-13. Tonight FTS aims to set ablaze group Gulf Oil for your laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea at the raucous Cage Match

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($8): Improvisors (who might include powerhouse musical improvisor Rebecca Vigil) take an audience suggestion of a band and then make up an episode of VH1’s Behind the Music on the spot at The PIT upstairs theatre: The Stories Behind the Music

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 The Boss 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-$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.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 2/6/13

February 6, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.
Amy Schumer’s just-released DVD Mostly Sex Stuff is great. Buy it here.

Nick Vatterott and Frank Conniff

Nick Vatterott and Frank “MST3K” Conniff perform stand-up at Hot Soup…

Cyndi Freeman and Ellena Chmielewski

…Cyndi Freeman performs burlesque at the storytelling & sideshow extravaganza And I Am Not Lying; delightful comic Ellena Chmielewski wrote & directs a 30 minute romantic comedy: Standards & Practices…

Nick Kroll 20

Nick Kroll

…and at 10:30 on Comedy Central is a new episode of the finest sketch comedy series to grace TV in years: Kroll 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:

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up for 15 comics performing for 5 minutes each at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.)—with drinks at half price: Happy Hour Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up providing 3 minutes per comic at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Max Corbel & Benel Germosen: Cracking It

7:00 pm-12:30 am ($7 for the entire evening): Magnet house troupes Dr. Champagne, Flower GIrl, The Wrath, Featherweight, Chet Watkins, Brick, Horses, and Bloomer performing improv, followed by a free audience interactive show with Bloomer at 11:30 pm: The Magnet’s Megawatt

[FREE] 7:00 pm to midnight: Five free hours of improvisation at The PIT upstairs theatre: Super Free Wednesday

7:00 pm ($5): “Christine Holt and Mary Guiteras both worked at The Magician, a bar in NYC’s Lower East Side. It was there that they realized they loved being oddballs. Sometimes they’d get in trouble because they’d be so busy being odd, they’d forget about their customers. Now they do it on stage,” and are tonight joined by Erin Lennox and Margaret Lyons for this show mixing stand-up, storytelling, and improv at The PIT downstairs lounge: Bartenders: Ladies’ Night

7:30 pm ($5): Expanding the UCB longform improv showcased on Harold Night is this weekly show at UCB East which tonight features troupes Huxtable and City Mouse: Lloyd Night

[TOP PICK] [FREE] Seating at 8:30, show at 9:00 pm (RSVP to confirm your spot at FreeComedyWednesdays@gmail.com): Frank Conniff (TV’s Frank on Mystery Science Theater 3000; Cinematic Titanic), Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central’s The Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award), Emily Heller (Comedy Central; staff writer for Rooftop Comedy; for ruminations on pregnancy, please click here), Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), and more performing stand-up at Ella (9 Avenue A) produced by Mark Normand, Matt Ruby, Gary Vider, and Sachi Ezura: Hot Soup

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Wonderful improvisor Ellena Chmielewski co-wrote and directed this comedy mini-play about modern romance at UCB Chelsea co-written & co-starring John Zachary Townsend (and which, barring last-minute snags, I’ll finally be attending tonight): Standards & Practices

…and in the other half of this sketch comedy double-bill, “Four traveling salespeople whose car broke down in your suburban neighborhood. They’ve come knocking… but what are your neighbors doing behind those doors?! The Partners are determined to find out, and sell some patented Ice Mix™ in the process:” Former Business Partners: Everything Must Go

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Nick DiPaolo (star stand-up, with numerous appearances on David Letterman, Jay Leno, Louie; Emmy-nominated comedy writer, talk show host), Tom Papa (host of Jerry Seinfeld-produced NBC comedy The Marriage Ref; numerous appearances on David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno; three Comedy Central specials), Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show), Robert Kelly (Louie, Comedy Central, Opie & Anthony), and Jeff Lamp (Jay Leno) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua: Nick DiPaolo, Tom Papa, and More

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups do sets “and then have a discussion about what’s going on in the world and the mysteries of life” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City, hosted by Chris Laker: The Show

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10 at the door or $11.80 in advance online): Storytelling, stand-up, and carny join forces to bring the blog And I Am Not Lying to life on stage, hosted by Jeff Simmermon (NPR’s This American Life, The Moth), and tonight featuring storytelling by Jeff, Brad Lawrence (Moth GrandSlam Champion, FringeNYC, co-host of The Standard Issues), and Daisy Rosario; stand-up by Sasheer Zamata (highly charming, innovative rising star; host of UCBT’s School Night, member of red-hot improv troupe Doppelganger, sketch troupe The Prom, and Harold Night troupe Bucky); sideshow antics by Abigoliah Schamaun; and burlesque by Cherry Pitz and Magdalena Fox, all at Under St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue): And I Am Not Lying

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Al Jackson (Comedy Central Presents, Last Comic Standing, John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up, Upload with Shaq, MTV), Selena Coppock (author of upcoming book The New Rules for Blondes), Victor Varnado (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central, NBC’s My Name is Earl, Adult Swim, Comedy Central’s The Awkward Comedy Show; films Pluto Nash, End of Days, A Guy Thing), Neil Constantine, Joe Larsonm and Monroe Martin performing stand-up at this free weekly comedy show at Lucky Jack’s Bar (129 Orchard Street) produced by Kyle Fincham, Lance Weiss, and Brendon Fitzgibbons: Gandhi, Is That You?

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Superb improvisors including Charlie Todd, John Murray, and John Frusciante “gather around the couch to turn each others’ bizarre tales and armchair philosophies into an evening of improv comedy. It’s like hanging out with your friends, except that your friends are really funny and need to suddenly turn their stories into improv scenes” at the UCB Chelsea theatre: The Living Room

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): Superb improvisors—and actual brothers—Will Hines and Kevin Hines make use of their intimate knowledge of each other to gracefully invent scenes (hopefully without any fighting) at UCB East performing as duo The Brothers Hines

[$] 9:45 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Jessica Kirson (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, HBO, Showtime, Bravo, VH1, Logo one-woman show My Cookie’s Gone), Sherri Shepherd (co-host of The View), Gregg Rogell (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Louie, Comedy Central), Godfrey (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, 30 Rock, VH1; films Zoolander, Original Gangsters, Soul Plane; 7 Up Yours ads), and Sherrod Small (writer/performer on TBS’ Are We There Yet?, Comedy Central, VH1), performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua: Jessica Kirson, Sherri Shepherd, and More

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): The instructors of UCB’s classes include some of the finest improvisors in the country. In this weekly show a bunch of them get on stage at UCB East, along with hosts Betsy Stover and Ari Voukydis: Hot for Teacher: The UCB Faculty Show

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: Rising stand-up stars—Jared Logan, Mike Lawrence, Mark Normand, Dan. St. Germain, Pat Dixon, Emily Heller, Michael Che, Joe List, and/or Nick Turner—at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: The Regulars

10:00 pm ($5): Two-person improv scenes from Haldane McFall & Brad Stuart, Elke Reid & Giovanni Vargas, and more at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Donna Lobello and tonight’s guest partner Meredith Hackman: I Trust (Two-Prov)

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: The wonderful Sasheer Zamata (Doppelganger) hosts as many as a dozen guests packed into 75 minutes performing stand-up, improv, sketch, and occasionally acts that defy categorization. The level of talent can vary wildly, but for some (like me), that’s part of the laid-back fun; and this is often one of the most amazing comedy shows in town. (Tonight’s scheduled guests include Katey Healy-Wurzburg, Adam Newman, and Luke Thayer; for the complete list, please click here.) Come support the experimentation, and periodic magical surprises, that this uniquely organic rollercoaster of a weekly show at UCB Chelsea makes possible—and don’t forget to toss $1 in the bucket on your way out: School Night

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up running until 1:00 am, with time divided evenly between performers (up to five minutes), at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City with host Rob Stern: Bucket ‘O Buckets

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Your opportunity to perform on the stage of UCB East with improv veterans, hosted by UCBT Harold Night house troupe Grandma’s Ashes: The Improv Jam

[TOP PICK] [$] 11:30 pm ($10 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Uncensored stand-up from Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, HBO, Showtime, MTV), 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), Kurt Metzger (Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Chris Distefano (Comedy Central, MTV2’s Guy Code), and Mike Vecchione (Last Comic Standing, Howard Stern) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua: The Nasty Show: Big Jay Oakerson, Jena Friedman, Kurt Metzger, and More

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 Friday 4/6/12

April 6, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For best TJ Miller comedy videos, please click here.

NYC comedic storytellers Cyndi Freeman, Leslie Goshko, and Erin Barker

Cyndi Freeman, Leslie Goshko, and Erin Barker are among the ace comedic storytellers at Adam Wade's "Super Stories"...

Julie Sharbutt and Marina Franklin

...rising star Julie Sharbutt improvises with her friend Liz Wisan because they're "Smart & Attractive;" and two of the finest stand-ups in the country, Ted Alexandro and Marina Franklin (above), headline at the Eastville Comedy Club

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:

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic show on a lottery system (sign-ups start at 5:30 pm) at The Creekupstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with hosts Mike Recine and Annie Lederman: The Shinebox

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($7): A wonderful lineup of all-gal storytellers: Erin Barker (Moth GrandSlam champion), Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Manhattan Monologue Slam Champ, host of Sideshow Goshko), Cyndi Freeman (Moth StorySlam champion, two-time FringeNYC award winner, burlesque star, co-host of And I Am Not Lying and The Standard Issues), Tracy Rowland (NPR, The Moth), and Sara Peters (The Moth podcast) telling hilarious tales at The Magnet with host Adam Wade Adam Wade (two-time Moth GrandSlam Storytelling Champion (2006 & 2009) and record-breaking 17-time StorySlam Champion; The New York Times Magazine; host of hilarious monthly storytelling extravaganzas Real Tales of College and The Adam Wade show; for Adam’s award-winning tale of being an NBC page on Conan O’Brien, please click here):Super Stories: Ladies Night Edition

…and by the way, be sure to read Jason Zinoman’s fine recent article on NYC storytelling—mentioning some of the folks in this show—in The New York Times

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5): Sharp improvisors at UCB East making up a musical on the spot—tonight featuring ace guest improvisors Fran Gillespie (Stone Cold Fox, The Law Firm), and Tim Martin (Airwolf), plus monologues from Hallie Haglund (The Daily Show): Diamond Lion

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10):A parody of The Bachelor written by UCB Chelsea faves Caitlin Bitzegaio (MTV, PBS, ESPN, writer or director of numerous UCBT sketch shows) and Leila Cohan-Miccio (Stone Cold Fox, Pig: A Restaurant), and worth catching if only to experience the delicious comedic performances of standouts Morgan Grace Jarrett (Big Fish, Love Liza, Buffy fan) and Nicole Byer (Doppelganger)—who are especially fun when they turn into an unlikely a comedy duo…: The Bachelor: Romance, Roses, and Romance

…and in the second half of this double-bill, a musical about 19th century New York in which “uptown the aristocrats and robber barons think they own the city, while downtown thieves, pimps, and she-males believe they do; but the real kings of the city, the only truly free ones, are the news boys—and for some reason, they’re all British!,” with book & lyrics by Brian Glidewell, Marcy Jarreau & Kevin Carter, and direction by Christopher Gladysz & Lauren Conlin Adams: Newsadoozies: A Man-Eating Musical

8:00 pm ($5): “It may be made up on the spot, but there is a method to the madness. In this show players explore the structure of improv by performing unique forms provided by the community and abroad” at The PIT downstairs lounge: True to Form

[FREE] 8:00 pm: The third annual comedy tournament featuring 40 improv groups…only one of which will triumph. Tonight four improv troupes battle for superiority, pride, and glory at The Creekupstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by James Ferrarella: The Arena, Round 4

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($15 [vs. $25] online or at the box office using discount code BBOX): Telly Savalas returns to life to entertain you and provide life guidance in this 50-minute show that was a hit at FringeNYC 2011 and is now enjoying an open-ended Friday night run at the Soho Playhouse’s downstairs Huron Club. The script is at times very smart, especially in its choices of hilarious video clips and music tracks from the real Savalas…who, in his more intense moments, apparently rivaled William Shatner at his silliest. But even when Hunter Nelson’s writing isn’t consistent, actor Tom DiMenna—who is a professional comic with great timing and skill at engaging an audience—will keep you entertained: Who Loves You, Baby?

[FREE] 8:00 pm: An open-mic show that’s first come, first serve (sign-ups start at 7:30 pm), with each comic getting five minutes on stage at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City: Mic and Cheese

[$] 8:00 pm ($35 & 2-drink min.) A comic who’s performed on HBO’s Def Comedy Jam and Bad Boys of ComedyShowtime at Harlem, BET’s ComicView, and the feature film Next Friday headlining tonight through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Michael Blackson

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($5): 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, top Maude sketch troupe Gramp’s, sketch/improv duo Klepper & Grey): The Friday Night Sh*w

[$] 8:30 pm & 10:30 pm ($25 & 2-drink min.): A stand-up who’s performed on David LettermanJay Leno, and his own Comedy Central Presents half-hour special headlining tonight and Saturday at the Gotham Comedy Club: Joey Kola

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 9:00 pm & 11:00 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): Killer lineup of 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.) and Marina Franklin (developing into one of the finest stand-ups in the country, with an uncommonly gentle, graceful style that’s pure joy; Last Comic Standing, Chappelle’s Show, VH1, Comedy Central’s Premium Blend), and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): Some of the finest improv in NYC from UCB Chelsea’s all-star members of The Stepfathers

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): At UCB East, an improv troupe that recently clobbered top rivals at Cage Match—thanks to such talents as Don Fanelli, Kate Riley, and Tim Martin—attempts to abandon rules for the sake of achieving new levels of hilarity in Fuck That Shit

9:30 pm ($10): A PIT improv troupe making up a musical on the spot after a friendly greeting: Hello

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: Joe Zimmerman (Rooftop Comedy), Dave Stone (Adult Swim’sSquidbillies), Andy Sanford (TBS), and TJ Young “deliver an original brand of humor that’s deeply rooted in stand-up and lightly blended with avant-garde elements of music, sketch and improv.” This bearded quartet’s credits include the album Cardio Mix from Comedy Central Records. Tonight they’re joined by stand-up guests RG Daniels, Dave Waite, Emily Fleming, Clayton English, Kate Hendricks, Paul Hooper, and Reid Faylor, all performing at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: The Beards of Comedy & Friends

10:00 pm ($7): Singing improvisors at The Magnet using an interview with an audience member to craft The Made-Up Musical

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Fran Gillespie, Jon Gabrus, Sue Galloway, Matt Fisher, Craig Rowin, Nate Lang, and other superb improvisors at UCB Chelsea making up scenes about an audience member’s legal dispute: The Law Firm: Law & Disorder

10:30 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at UCB East hosted by Emily Axford, D’Arcy Carden, Alden Ford, Brandon Scott Jones, and/or Justin Tyler: Gentrify

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): One of my favorite people, Julie Sharbutt—who’s performed with some of the greatest improvisors alive at UCBT’s Gravid Water—goes for improv gold herself with comedy partner Liz Wisan at The PIT downstairs lounge in a very accurately named show: Smart & Attractive

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): All-gal hosts Amey Goerlich (member of Krompf, co-host of Indie Cage Match), Abby Holland (VH1’s Best Night Ever, Veal), and Natasha Rothwell (Hodapp & Rothwell) pretend to be boys at The PIT upstairs theatre with guests Ashley Ward (Diamond Lion, Hello, Taco Supreme), Sarah Nowak (The Baldwins, SidViscous), and Kevin Cragg: Oh Boy! and Friends

11:30 pm ($5): Most of the improv you’ll see in NYC is longform. Tonight at The Magnet the original and still-vibrant short form version will be performed by such talents as Louis Kornfeld and Elana Fishbein:Late Night Party Prov

[TOP PICK] [FREE] Midnight: NYC stand-ups—sometimes stellar ones—pushing boundaries for a show designed for looseness and experimentation at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with hosts Jacqueline Novak and Chris Laker: Permission to Fail

[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 prestigiousUCB Chelsea stage. Hosted by Maude troupe Onassis: Liquid Courage

 For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

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


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Tuesday 11/22/11

November 22, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

Cyndi Freeman and Ellena Chmielewski

Cyndi Freeman preps for Thanksgiving with a Brooklyn storytelling show about family gatherings: "The Standard Issues;" the delightful Ellena Chmielewski and her improv troupe Tesla host variety show "The Lab"...

Janeane Garofalo and Justin Long

TV & movie star Janeane Garofalo does stand-up at "Tell Your Friends," and Justin Long co-hosts at "Sweet"

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 ($5): In this double-bill of shows auditioning for a spot on the Magnet schedule, Dreagn Foltz performs original comedic songs with such titles as Beer GogglesEthnomonogamy, and Let Me Be That Douche in Love Songs Gone Wrong ; and then a sketch troupe does a show with no description titled 100 Years of Ballitude

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Open mic for comedy of all types (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at Queens LIC’sThe Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Robert Dean: The Dean’s List

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): TV & movie star Janeane Garofalo, Rob Paravonian (Comedy Central, VH1; to watch his hit video Pachelbel Rant, which has been viewed by over 9 million people on YouTube, please click here), Eric Kirchberger (Comedy Central), Aidan BIshop (visiting from Dublin), Jermaine Fowler, and musical guest Eden & John’s East River String Band performing at the Lolita Bar at Liam McEneaney’s Tell Your Friends

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Host Cyndi Freeman (FringeNYC, burlesque star) and fellow storytellers Brad Lawrence (Moth GrandSlam Champion, FringeNYC), Alex Gallefant, Steven Berkowitz, and more tell tales about this month’s pre-Thanksgiving topic “Gatherings” at Brooklyn’s Pacific Standard (82 Fourth Avenue): The Standard Issues: Gatherings

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Jeff Simmermon (writer), Matt Mercier (writer), Olivia Henderson (real estate agent), Jordan Reeves (concierge), Joanne Solomon (performer), and host Ben Lillie (scientist) tell funny tales at this science-based monthly show that tonight focuses on a potentially hot topic—Bodies in Motion—at Brooklyn’s Union Hall : The Story Collider

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Adira Amram (fresh, hilarious rising star singer/songwriter; winner of the 2011 ECNY Award for Best Musical Act), Becky Yamamoto (rave reviews from The New York Timesand The New Yorker; former beard-wearing member of band Stickerbook), and Ben Kronberg (Jimmy Kimmel) performing at UCB East for a comedy variety show produced by Sara Schaefer & Scott Moran on behalf of a great late actor: After Hours with Gene Hackman and Friends

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Comics industry pros joining super-hosts Alex Zalben, Justin Tyler, and Pete LePage in a lively & hilarious discussion about four-color pop culture at The PIT downstairs lounge: Comic Book Club

8:00 pm ($10): This intriguing-sounding show at the Gershwin Hotel (7 East 27th Street) is “a showcase for performers who appropriate the space of stand-up comedy to stage projects that, while undeniably humorous, don’t always deliver a punch line. Along with providing a legitimate venue for creative misfits known to disingenuously market themselves as musicians, dancers, singing telegrams, novelty strippers, college professors, and perfect for your child’s next birthday party, it explores the intersection of popular forms of entertainment and performance art. The talent featured tonight draws from diverse artistic backgrounds, and each performance dislodges stand-up from its current trajectory and points it in a strange, new direction:” Chuckles Plus

8:00 pm ($10): At The PIT upstairs theatre, the worlds of “magic, mind-reading, and mutilation” are explored by Matthew Holtzclaw and Prakash Puru: Strange Things

8:00 pm-11:00 pm ($5): Three full hours of improv at UCB Chelsea for only five bucks—tonight featuring UCBT house troupes Dance Break, Mr. Crime, Creature, Very Good Kiss, and Sandino—followed at 11:00 by advanced improv students (plus Pat Baer) making up The Lost Stories of Philip K. DIckHarold Night

[FREE] 8:00 pm: This weekly show features “a swarthy selection of fine stand-up comics and mildly entertaining recurring segments” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre, hosted by Jim Tews & Brendan Eyre: Chest Hair

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:30 pm: Wyatt Cenac (star correspondent for The Daily Show), Larry Murphy (brilliant voiceover actor for FOX’s Bob’s Burgers, Comedy Central’s Ugly Americans, Adult Swim’sAssy McGee and Home Movies, and numerous other shows), and delightful singer Shonali Bhowmik & her band (Variety SHAC, recent solo album 100 Oaks Revival) performing at Brooklyn’sPublic Assembly (70th North 6th Street, by the L subway’s Bedford Avenue stop) along with sketches from Moon regulars Camille Harris, Jordan Clifford, Bryan Condon, James Beard, and hosts Nat Towsen & Bob Walles: The Moon Show

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:30 pm ($21.78, plus 2-drink min. or $20 unlimited nonalcoholic drinks): 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.), Marina Franklin (developing into one of the finest stand-ups in the country, with an uncommonly gentle, graceful style that’s pure joy; Last Comic Standing, Chappelle’s Show, VH1, Comedy Central’sPremium Blend), Paul Mecurio (Conan O’Brien, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents), Andy Pitz (David Letterman, Craig Ferguson), Brian Scott McFadden (Conan O’Brien, MTV), host Dean Obeidallah, and more performing stand-up at the Comic Strip Live Comedy Club (1568 2nd Avenue off 81st Street): Alexandro, Franklin, Mecurio, and More at Comic Strip Live

[$] 8:30 pm ($20 & 2-drink min.): A stand-up who’s appeared on Last Comic Standing and Comedy Central, and starred in her own CBS series Costello, headlining for one night only at the GothamComedy Club: Sue Costello

8:30 pm ($5): In this double-bill, each of two of The Magnet’s singing improv troupes will make up a musical on the spot based on an audience suggestion: Aquarius and Rosencrantz

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): Justin Long (NBC’s EdGalaxy Quest, Going the Distance, Live Free or Die Hard, the Mac in Apple Computer commercials), Kurt Braunohler (Comedy Central; creator & host of IFC game show Pointless; co-creator & co-star of UK TV series Penelope: Princess of Pets;co-host of Hot Tub Variety; triple 2011 ECNY Award winner), Rob Lathan (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, ABC), and more performing at Ella (9 Avenue A) hosted by Seth Herzog (Jimmy Fallon, VH1): Sweet

9:00 pm (no cover, 1-item min.): NYC stand-ups Craig Baldo (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, VH1, The Onion), Katrin Hier, Tyler Gildin, and Ramzi Bautista performing at Luca Lounge (222 Avenue B off 14th Street) hosted by twins Adam & Todd Stone, who for this weekly show leave behind their trademark suits: Jackets Off

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Terrific comedy duo Leah Rudick & Katie Hartman, a.k.a. Skinny Bitch Jesus Meeting, back from their second year at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where they were proclaimed “biggest revelation” by the Guardian, performing a new sketch show about reality TV at The PIT upstairs theatre: The Underdeveloped and Overexposed Life and Death of Deena Domino

9:30 pm ($5): Rachel Feinstein (finalist on Last Comic Standing; Comedy Central; opens for Sarah Silverman on tour), Shannon Hatch (blog I Hope The Worst Isn’t Over), and Jeff Klinger performing at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Joe DeRosa (HBO’s Down and DirtyComedy Central Presents) and Jared Logan (hilarious angry rising star; Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, co-host of Righteous Kill): Righteous Kill

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Stand-up and sketch at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre, typically hosted by sketch troupes Savage Animal and/or Jerk Practice: Savage Animal

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): Improv troupe Tesla—which includes one of my favorite young comics, Ellena Chmielewski—takes the UCB East stage for one night only, accompanied by troupes Sven, The Mondays, and musical group Jonny Tables, for a variety show it calls: Tesla Presents: The Lab

[FREE] 10:15 pm: In this free Magnet show, audience members can join in with musical improv troupe Aquarius to make up stories in song on the spot: Musical Magnet Mixer

[FREE] 11:00 pm: A breathtaking 40 comics are given 2 minutes each in this rapid-fire open-mic stand-up show at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted with wit and energy by Jay Welch: Bring It

[FREE] 11:30 pm: Open-mic stand-up at UCB East hosted by Boris Khaykin, John Trowbridge, and/or Katie East: Tuesday Night Open Mic

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

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