NYC Top Comedy Choices for March 2018: Last Updated Friday 3/2/18

March 2, 2018

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Please note that these listings are updated frequently. The best way to be instantly notified about new show postings is to subscribe to my BestNewYorkComedy.com blog and allow for email notifications, and/or to follow me on Twitter (@hybender) or Instagram (@hybenderny).

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 March 2018 (with much, much more to come soon) include:

"Fly, You Fools!" and "Hold On To Your Butts" double-bill by Recent CutbacksTwo of the finest productions to ever grace The Peoples Improv Theater are from the Recent Cutbacks company, which includes superbly inventive director Kristin McCarthy Parker, amazing shape-shifting performers Kyle Schaefer, Nick Abeel, and Matt Zambrano, and stellar foley artists Blair Busbee & Kelsey Didion—and tonight you can see both magical shows back to back. Kicking off the evening is a live-on-stage ‘shot for shot’ parody of the first chapter in “the most epic fantasy trilogy of all time”—i.e., Lord of the Rings: Fly, You Fools!; and then an unforgettable live shot for shot stage version of Jurassic Park: Hold On To Your Butts…Jurassik Parc (7:00 pm, $30 for the entire double-bill (a great deal, as these shows are normally $20 each), The PIT Mainstage at 123 East 24th Street)

Literati: A Comedy Show About Books and the Idiots Who Write ThemFriday 3/2: “Do you ever leave a comedy show saying ‘Hmm, that was pretty funny but not enough reading’? Literati is a night of comics in character performing hilarious readings—sometimes while wearing wigs,” with comics Ikechukwu Ufomadu, Ruby McCollister, Peter Smith, and Fareeha Khan hosted by Colin O’Brien & Michael Wolf: Literati: A Comedy Show About Books and the Idiots Who Write Them (9:30 pm, $10, LES’ Caveat at 21-A Clinton Street; take F/J/M/Z subway to Delancey Street/Essex Street)

Daniel Kitson: "It's Always Right Now Until It's Later"March: In a rare change, this month one of comedy’s greatest talents, Daniel Kitson, has made available a film of his stage show It’s Always Right Now Until It’s Later for a 3-day online rental. Daniel has been infamously reluctant to provide his work in a permanent form that can be savored by mass audiences, so please encourage him to make this a mere first step in a flood of releases by renting and thoroughly enjoying the 96-minute show in the convenience of your own home, office cubicle, prison cell, or what have you. Recorded in June 2012 at the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester, and produced, directed, and edited by Ewan Jones Morris: It’s Always Right Now Until It’s Later ($5 for a 72-hour streaming rental; available immediately worldwide via Daniel’s site at Video.DanielKitson.com)

Saturday 3/3: Four funny people tell amazing stories. Three of the tales are absolutely true…but one of them is a pack of lies. The audience then asks questions to try and identify the fibber—and everyone who chooses correctly gets a free t-shirt! This evening’s superb yarn-spinners are Ophira Eisenberg (above, middle left; NBC’s The Today Show, CBS’ The Late Late Show, Comedy Central, VH1, Showtime, host of NPR’s trivia/puzzle show Ask Me Another, bestselling book Screw Everyone, comedy album Bangs!; for a sampling of Ophira’s remarkably deep comedic tales, please click here), Jim O’Grady (above right; The New York Times, This American Life, WNYC Radio, Moth GrandSlam Champion), Susan Kent (above, middle right; The Moth Radio Hour), and Mike Brown (above left; co-host of Comedy Outliers). Come let these storytellers and host Andy Christie (The New York Times, NPR, Moth GrandSlam champion, exceptionally nice guy) attempt to mislead you at The Liar Show (6:00 pm; $20, which includes one drink; reservations highly recommended by calling 212.989.9319; West Village’s Cornelia Street Cafe at 29 Cornelia Street)

Saturday 3/3: Harry Potter fans, rejoice! The topic for this month’s Book Club is Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, the fifth and longest book in J.K. Rowling’s phenom series. Hosts Blythe Roberson (The New Yorker, The Onion, McSweeney’s) & Colin Stokes (Associate Cartoon Editor at The New Yorker; The Onion, GQ) will discuss it for your edutainment, aided by comics Sydnee Washington (MTV2’s Vidiots, co-host of podcast The Unofficial Expert), Dan Chamberlain (hilarious larger-than-life character actor & sketch performer; sketch writer for Funny or Die, Above Average), Sachi Ezura (producer for The Rundown with Robin Thede), and Amy Zimmer (The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal; author of book Meet Miss Subways: New York’s Beauty Queens 1941-1976): Book Club—A Comedy Show: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (8:00 pm, $10, Brooklyn’s Union Hall at 702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Saturday 3/3: Sean Patton (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; killer sets on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien; Comedy Central’s Half Hour, Inside Amy Schumer, @midnight, This Is Not Happening, and The Meltdown; VH1, TruTV, IFC, Viceland; feature film Wifed Out; former co-host of Esquire Network’s Best Bars in America), Nore Davis (HBO’s Last Week Tonight, Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer and Russell Simmons Presents The Ruckus, Showtime’s Boardwalk Empire, MTV), Sydnee Washington (MTV2’s Vidiots, co-host of podcast The Unofficial Expert), and Pretty Sad White Girls (Lisa Bettencourt & Jillian Schiralli) perform stand-up or sketch hosted by Christi Chiello (Comedy Central’s Roast Battle, MTV’s Girl Code, TruTV, stellar Ars Nova show It’s Christi, B*tch!) & Petey Deabreu (host of Petey’s World): White Chocolate (10:00 pm; $10, Brooklyn’s Union Hall at 702 Union Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Wednesday 3/7: One of the very best shows at UCB is by Jay Malsky, a super-charged & hilarious character comic who also sings beautifully. This 25-minute solo musical shows off all of Jay’s strengths, as he plays a variety of women whose boyfriends he stole. With musical direction by Jody Shelton, choreography by Zak Sommerfield, and taped vocals by David Carl & Taylor Ortega, this production establishes Jay Malsky as a vibrant rising star with a great comedy career ahead of him. If you’re in the industry and looking for fresh talent, come check this out: Jay Malsky Slept With My Boyfriend! (9:30 pm; $9—which includes a second show, I’m Your Mommy; UCB Hell’s Kitchen at 555 West 42nd Street)

Thursday 3/8: 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, $10, Brooklyn’s Littlefield at 635 Sackett Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Saturday 3/10: A show celebrating the app that redefined online dating, with the lovely and quick-witted Lane Moore (above right; 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 for this Fourth Anniversary Show, which is LGBTQ-themed, are guests Mychal Denzel Smith (above left; author of New York Times bestselling book Invisible Man, Got the Whole World Watching: A Young Black Man’s Education), JD Samson (above middle; singer/songwriter/musician/producer; bands Le Tigre and MEN), and Eliot Glazer (Broad City, Haunting Renditions; author of My Parents Were Awesome). This show usually sells out, so I highly recommend nabbing tickets in advance online for Tinder Live: Fourth Anniversary Show (8:30 pm, $15, Brooklyn’s Littlefield at 635 Sackett Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Sunday 3/18: Brothers Hari Kondabolu (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents; fascinating TruTV documentary The Problem with Apu) and Ashok Kondabolu (Dap in Das Racist) spontaneously interact with each other, sharing family stories, discussing current events, and more for this podcast recording: Kondabolu Brothers Podcast Live (8:00 pm, $15, Brooklyn’s Littlefield at 635 Sackett Street; take R subway to Union Street)

Saturday 3/24: Ashley Brooke Roberts (energetic, enormously likeable stand-up, sketch comic and actress; stellar co-host of Fresh Out and Camp; former writer for Nat Geo Explorer and MTV’s Guy Code; UCB Maude sketch groups The Prom and Absolutely), Emma Carmichael (former Editor-in-Chief of Jezebel), and Celisse Henderson (singer/songwriter/musician; recently performed with Ke$ha at the Grammys) sing or tell jokes, then enthusiastically endorse some product they love…which will be handed out to lucky members of the audience! Hosted by the wonderful Chris Duffy (staff writer for NatGeo Explorer, host of You’re the Expert), who makes this promise for one audience member per show: You Get A Spoon (4:00 pm, $10, LES’ Caveat at 21-A Clinton Street; take F/J/M/Z subway to Delancey Street/Essex Street)

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 East
153 East 3rd Street; 99-seater; a top comedy venue that focuses more than sister theatre UCB Hell’s Kitchen on stand-up and screenings, and on experimental shows taking big risks; shows free-$12

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/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!

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.

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, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 11/13/16

November 13, 2016

Daniel KitsonUK-based comedy genius Daniel Kitson is briefly gracing us with his presence to gloat about Brexit no longer being the stupidest choice a major country has made in the 21st century (“You seem distracted. Has something happened recently? Maybe you stubbed your toe?”). He’s also here to perform his haunting one-man play Mouse, about which The Scotsman wrote: “There’s no end, let’s face it, to the evolving brilliance of Daniel Kitson, who may have started out in stand-up comedy, but is now one of the most remarkable exponents of solo theatre in the UK, if not in Europe.” To be entirely honest, stand-up is a higher form of art than virtually any kind of theatre, and it saddens me that Kitson has been visiting us for the past few years to perform plays instead of maximizing his gifts as one of the greatest stand-up comics alive. (Imagine Louis C.K. restricting his new works to episodes of Horace and Pete…) That said, any form of Kitson is worth catching; and while this show takes a long, twisty path, its conclusion packs a wallop: Mouse: The Persistence of an Unlikely Thought (7:30 pm, plus 3:00 pm matinees on Sundays, through 11/27; $25; Brooklyn’s St. Ann’s Warehouse at 45 Water Street)

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

[TOP PICK] 4:00 pm ($5): Mike Reiss (four-time Emmy winner for his 25 years writing for The Simpsons) hosts readings of plays he’s written—and hopes to get produced—at The PIT upstairs theatre: Mike Reiss Play Reading Series

[TOP PICK] 4:30 pm: All-gal musical Improv group Redshirts creates new episodes of Star Trek: The Next Generation on the spot, plus group Choirfly sings a cappella about comic book and pop culture topics, at The PIT downstairs lounge: Redshirts and Choirfly: A Star Trek and Pop Culture Musical Celebration

5:30 pm ($5): Improvisors who cut across all regions and schools come together for one evening at The PIT Loft (154 West 29th Street): Supernova

[TOP PICK] 6:00 pm ($7): A female guest monologist—who tonight is Selena Coppock (Amazon’s Red Oaks, VH1, author of book The New Rules for Blondes)—takes a suggestion from the audience and shares true personal tales. These stories are then brought to life by 10 female improvisors—including Artistic Director Megan Gray—at the Magnet theatre: That’s What She Said

[TOP PICK] 6:00 pm ($5): There’s nothing more unpredictable on a stage than an animal. In this show, pet owners perform improv along with their real-life pets at The PIT upstairs theatre (123 East 24th Street): Pet Prov

6:30 pm ($5): Three NYC improv groups that are independent (i.e., not a house team of any particular improv school/theatre) compete for audience member laughs and votes at UCB East hosted by superb improvisors Amey Goerlich & Ryan Karels (half of revered improv group Krompf): Indie Cage Match

7:00 pm ($5): Three scripted shows for the price of one at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street): Triple Feature

7:00 pm ($5): Vicky Kuperman & Max Cohen, who happen to be married to each other, each perform 45-minute stand-up sets to practice for their upcoming album recordings at Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue): The Run Through

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm ($32.75 & 2-drink min.)  A stand-up who’s performed on Jimmy Fallon, Conan O’Brien, @midnight, and Drunk History, starred in two Comedy Central hour-long specials (Whiskey Icarus and Loose in Chicago), is a recurring character on TruTV’s Those Who Can’t, and has opened for Patton Oswalt and Daniel Tosh headlining one last night at the Carolines Comedy Club: Kyle Kinane

[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 Shannon O’Neill and Anthony Atamanuik, and sometimes network TV & movie stars such as Amy Poehler and Horatio Sanz: ASSSSCAT 3000

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm, 8:00 pm, 9:30 pm, 10:00 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Some of the finest stand-ups in the country spread among seven shows, with three shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane), and the 8:00 & 10:00 pm shows at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Sunday

7:30 pm ($5): Dana Krashin and friends are improv group Student Driver, which hosts two indie improv troupes making up scenes and then performs itself, all at The PIT downstairs lounge: Student Driver Indie Road

7:30 pm ($10; includes FREE ICE CREAM at 7:00 in the lobby): A variety show featuring stand-up, characters, improv, and/or more from such talents as Megan Gray, Elana Fishbein, and Chet Siegel at The Magnet theatre hosted by Molly Kiernan: Molly’s Guilt Free Comedy and Ice Cream Social

8:00 pm ($5): Stand-ups Joyelle Johnson, Liz Magee, Daniel Simonsen, Tommy McNamara, Dan Lamonte, and Jared Freid performing at UCB East guest-hosted by Joe Zimmerman (Conan O’Brien, John Oliver, Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing): If You Build It

8:00 pm ($5): Two sketch comedy groups compete for audience laughs and votes at The PIT Loft (154 West 29th Street), with the winner getting no tangible prize but earning Bragging Rights

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($8): Storyteller Lyssa Mandel invites comics to “expose their bleeding-heart adolescent artifacts (journal entries, poetry, original songs, and art), then laugh at and with their own flaws,” with tonight’s guests Keisha Zollar (HBO’s Divorce, Orange Is the New Black, MTV, Comedy Central, ace improv trio Doppelganger,, sketch group Astronomy Club), Calvin Cato (host of Ed Sullivan on Acid), and Leila Ben-Abdallah, plus music from the incredible Rebecca Vigil (rising star powerhouse improv singer; Your Love Our Musical, The Vigilante), all at Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue): The Bitch Seat

8:30 pm ($5): Two comics are invited to share tales about cherished personal treasures, which Improv group Trophy Wives will then use as springboards for making up scenes on the spot at The PIT downstairs lounge: Trophy Wives: Show & Tell

8:30 pm ($5): Improvisors give up specific bad habits for seven days and then make up scenes about their experiences at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street): Bad Habits

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): Duo improv from Louis Kornfeld & Rick Andrews at The Magnet theatre: Kornfeld & Andrews

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Group Medusa turns a calamity selected by the an audience member into an improvised documentary live on stage at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue): Medusa Presents Improv Against Humanity

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Improvisors make up scenes at The PIT upstairs theatre: Matt’s Emotions

9:00 pm ($5): Indie improv groups make up scenes at The PIT Loft (154 West 29th Street) hosted by Ian Herrin: The Ian Herrin Improv Hour

[ALMOST FREE] 10:30 pm ($1): This improv show is based on a Mullaney Chain (pioneered by Kevin Mullaney) in which the host invites a guest to improvise with him or her, then the guest independently invites a third person, who then invites a fourth person, and so on, creating a one-time-only lineup that will be a surprise to everyone involved at The PIT Loft (154 West 29th Street) hosted by Kurt Guenther: The Telephone Show

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 The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue) hosted by Sam Rose: Bucket! We’ll Do it Live!

[FREE] 5:00 pm: Walk-in stand-up lottery style open mic that provides 4 minutes per comic at Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue) hosted by Andrea Shapiro & Chris Gersbeck: Bunk Bed Time Open Mic

5:15ish pm (no cover, 1 drink min.): Weekly open mic stand-up, with comics selected from names tossed into a bucket starting at 4:55 pm, at Brooklyn’s Legion Bar (790 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by Aaron Glaser, Irene Hartmann, and/or Carlos Delgado: Sunday Open Mic

[ALMOST FREE] 5:30 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

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: 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’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue) hosted by Ian Kitchen: The Grandstand

[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

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; 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; 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!)

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, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Tuesday 12/17/13

December 17, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Reggie Watts

Comedy geniuses Reggie Watts…

Daniel Kitson

…and Daniel Kitson are among the guests at Eugene Mirman’s bash in Brooklyn: Pretty Good Friends…

Seth Herzog

…while Seth Herzog puts on a gals final show for 2013 featuring Sean Patton, Chris “Shockwave” Sullivan, a world-class juggler, and much more at Sweet…

Gary Vider

…and very funny rising star Gary Vider headlines at 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:

 [TOP PICK] 7:00 pm-Midnight ($7 for the whole evening): In this 5-hour extravaganza, five of The Magnet’s singing improv groups make up a musical on the spot based on an audience suggestion, followed at 10:00 by a free show that lets audience members join in with a musical improv group to make up stories in song: Magnet Musical Megawatt

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Comics creators join super-hosts Alex Zalben, Justin Tyler, and Pete LePage in a lively & hilarious discussion about four-color pop culture at Fontana’s (105 Eldridge Street), with giveaways of comics and gift certificates (and if you can’t make it, watch in online here): Comic Book Club

[FREE] 7:00 pm: The co-host of weekly show Comedy at the Beaty Bar tries out material at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Nate Fridson

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:30 pm ($7.37 if you use code BREAKOUT online or by phone, plus 2-drink min.) A hilarious writer & deadpan stand-up—for sample jokes, please click here —headlines for one night only at the Carolines Comedy Club (with openers Luis J. Gomez, Dave Smith, and Jasmine Pierce): Gary Vider

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm-12:30 am ($5): Eight long form UCB house improv groups—Greg, Higgins, Graceland, GoodGirl, Namaste, Grammer, The Regulars, and Bucky—get on the UCB Chelsea stage for a five hour holiday improv blast: The Longest Harold Night of the Year

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($12 at the door or $13.41 online): “The Star Wars Holiday Special was broadcast in its entirety only once, in the United States and Canada, on November 17, 1978, preempting Wonder Woman and The Incredible Hulk. It has never been rebroadcast or officially released on home video. David Hofstede called it ‘the worst two hours of television ever.’ George Lucas has reportedly said ‘If I had the time and a sledgehammer, I would track down every copy of that show and smash it.’ Join us and find out why Cherry Pitz is obsessed with it!” in this burlesque tribute accompanied by clips of the show at the R-Bar (218 Bowery) hosted by Cherry Pitz (a.k.a. sharp storyteller Cyndi Freeman): Hotsy Totsy Burlesque’s tribute to The 1978 Star Wars Holiday Special

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5 online using discount code NORTHERN; no min.): TV & movie star Janeane Garofalo, Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Sean Patton (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; killer sets on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien, upcoming Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1, feature film Wifed Out; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award), Reese Waters (David Letterman), Josh Carter, and Ray Devito performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander, Janeane Garofalo, Sean Patton, Nick Vatterott, and More

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Ace group Murderfist (NYC’s fearless heavy metal version of a sketch troupe; winner of the 2010 ECNY Award) and sketch troupe Girls With Brown Hair perform at the upstairs Stand Up NY Lab (236 West 78th Street): Sketch Night at the Lab

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Dave Hill (one of the most original and hilariously sharp alternative comics in the country; HBO, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, NPR, The Dave Hill Explosion, bands Valley Lodge and Diamondsnake, champion rapper, author of Tasteful Nudes), Livia Scott (magical comedic chameleon; Conan O’Brien, Law & Order, VH1, feature film National Lampoon’s Dirty Movie; sketch groups Scrambled Legs and The Livia Scott Sketch Program), Lou Perez, Sam Grittner, Rusty Ward, and Sandra Bauleo performing stand-up or sketch for this free weekly show at People’s Republic of Brooklyn (247 Smith Street) hosted by Tim Ellis & Mo Fathelbab: Manifesto

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($25 at the box office or $28 online): UK-based Daniel Kitson is one of the sharpest writer/performers alive. This year he took a huge risk by doing a show in which he doesn’t speak a word, and doesn’t even interact with the audience, but instead walks around the stage playing a series of recordings of his and other voices—which is either highly artistic and poignant, or like watching a recorded radio program in a darkened theatre, depending on how you feel about it. You can read a carefully balanced and nuanced review from Jason Zinoman of The New York Times here and a blunt review from Elisabeth Vincentelli of the New York Post here. This is a sprawling, detail-packed scripted show, not stand-up. If you’re up for something different, though, any performance by Daniel is something special. This is the final week of the run, which ends December 21st at Brooklyn’s St. Ann’s Warehouse (29 Jay Street): Analog,Ue

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Kevin Meaney (Saturday Night Live, 30 Rock, HBO, Comedy Central, Adult Swim), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), Robert Kelly (Louie, Comedy Central, Opie & Anthony), Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show), and Jeff Lamp (Jay Leno, Comedy Central) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by William Stephenson (FX’s Louie, The Chris Rock Show): Kevin Meaney, Gary Gulman, Ryan Hamilton, and More

8:00 pm ($8): A house sketch troupe performs at The PIT upstairs theatre, directed by Holden McNeely (Murderfist): National Scandal

8:00 pm ($5): “Improvisers and stand-ups do what they do best…and then switch places to try their hand at what the other does best. Performing to sold out crowds at UCBT-LA, this show is a cross-discipline Cage Match.” On the improv side is team PRISM; while the stand-ups are Jeffrey Joseph, Kara Klenk, and Adam Chisnall, all performing at UCB East hosted by Boris Khaykin: Impro(vs)tandup

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by the brilliantly surreal and hilarious Joe Pera, plus Charles Gould and Dan Licata: Dan + Joe + Charles’ Show

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:30 pm (reserve your free spots by clicking here): and 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), Reese Waters (David Letterman), Matt Ruby (MTV; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here, blog Sandpaper Suit), Nate Fridson, Chris Laker, Taylor Ketchum, and more performing stand-up at The Irish Exit (978 Second Avenue, off 52nd Street, in the back room) produced every Tuesday by Mark Normand, Matt Ruby, Gary Vider, and Sachi Ezura: Hot Soup

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] 9:00 pm ($20 at the door or $25.49 online): Two of the quickest and most talented comedy geniuses alive, Daniel Kitson and Reggie Watts, star at this holiday bash hosted by Eugene Mirman, which also features Janelle James, Derrick Brown, and “special guests” (as if there’s anyone more special than Daniel and Reggie…), all performing at Brooklyn’s The Bell House (149 7th Street, between Second and Third Avenues; take the R to 9th Street or the F to 4th Avenue): Pretty Good Friends

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($7): 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 Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Jared Logan (rising star; Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever, CNN, TBS), Chris “Shockwave” Sullivan (amazing human boombox; The Daily Show, The Electric Company, Freestyle Love Supreme, co-host of The BEATdown), Clarke McFarlane (renowned juggler/comic currently starring in the circus variety show La Soiree at Union Square Theater), Chris Barron, Tim Harrington, Rosewood, and more performing at The Slipper Room (167 Orchard Street) hosted by Seth Herzog (Jimmy Fallon long-time staff comic, VH1, Nat Geo): Sweet

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Typically fine stand-ups (not announced) performing with composer Matt Garrison’s four-piece jazz band playing in the background at Queens LIC’s The Creek downstairs lounge hosted by Mike Finoia. Please note this is slated to be the final show of Code Name: Comedy and Jazz

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NY stand-ups (not announced) performing at this weekly show at Brooklyn’s The Alligator Lounge (600 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by Sean Donnelly, Kevin McCaffrey, Robert Dean, and/or Steve O’Brien: Comedy at Alligator Lounge

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Phoebe Robinson debuts this monthly stand-up show, tonight featuring Brooke Van Poppelen (brilliant writer, stand-up, and storyteller; writer and/or producer for MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Failosophy, and Nikki & Sara Show; trutV, TLC, co-host of Dive Comedy), Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents), and Jamie Lee (staff writer/performer for The Pete Holmes Show; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, MTV’s Girl Code, VH1) all performing at the UCB East theatre: Blaria Live Stand-Up Comedy

9:30 pm ($5): Short-form improv is best, argues Terry Withers: “New York City is filled with lowest common denominator long-form improvisors. Sure, that type of improv gets laughs, but nine out of ten scenes are cheap and undisciplined. Get to the heart of what’s great about spontaneity using short-form classics that point to hidden truths: Party Quirks, Match OUTMATCH, Freeze, Ape Nest, and The Slam Pun Competition feed the soul and edify the mind” at The PIT downstairs lounge: Short Form Is the Only Art Form

9:30 pm ($8): Sketch comedy from 4-gal group Buzz Off Lucille at The PIT upstairs theatre: The Buzz Off Lucille Christmas Pageant

[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), 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 Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Russ Meneve (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno), Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), Annie Lederman (Comedy Central, Chelsea Lately, co-host of Pirate Party), and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander, Sean Patton, Russ Meneve, and More

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, HBO, Showtime, MTV), Luis J. Gomez, Dave Smith, and other NYC stand-ups performing live on stage for this podcast show at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City: Legion of Skanks

Tuesday 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

[TOP PICK] [ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): In this delightful weekly open-mic show, each comic has 3 minutes to try out a character-based bit (e.g., for a solo show, sketch, or audition) at The PIT downstairs lounge, hosted by Jen Kwok (Comedy Central) and Keisha Zollar (Doppelganger): Imposter Open Mic

[ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): Open-mic sketch that allows you to either perform a sketch with your own performers or bring in pages for the audience to perform at The PIT downstairs lounge, followed by feedback on your bit from PIT “sketch-perts:” Pens & Pencils

6:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, running 2 1/2 hours. Arrive 30 minutes before the show to get on the signup sheet. This is a fine opportunity to perform at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club Open Mic

[FREE] 6:15 pm: Open mic for comedy of all types providing 2 minutes for each performer (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Jay Dean and Tynan DeLong: Two Nice Guys Open MIc

[FREE] 6:30 pm: Weekly stand-up open mic (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at People’s Republic of Brooklyn (247 Smith Street) hosted by Dustin Drury: This Is Happening 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 Tuesday 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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:15: Sign up at 9:30 pm for the opportunity to make up a musical on the spot with The Magnet improv group The Jezebelies: Magnet Musical Improv Mixer

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up at UCB East hosted by Boris Khaykin, John Trowbridge, and/or Katie East: Tuesday Night Open Mic

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): 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

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): An improv jam for students at all levels to work on their skills at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Elke Reid and David Frasure: Study Hall

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.


July 10, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Just four more nights to catch Daniel Kitson; details below.

Daniel Kitson

Genius comic Daniel Kitson blends stand-up and theatre in After The Beginning, Before The End…

Ass Backwards

…and UCB East hosts a free sneak peek screening of feature film comedy Ass Backwards

 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] 5:00 pm: A sneak peek screening of the comedy feature film Ass Backwards, co-written and co-starring UCB alums Casey Wilson (SNL, Happy Endings) and June Diane Raphael (Bride Wars), and also featuring Paul Scheer, Bob Odenkirk, Alicia Silverstone, Vincent D’Onofrio, Jon Cryer, and Paul Rust, at UCB East (which used to be an indie film theatre): Ass Backwards

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 6:00 pm: PIT founder Ali Farahnakian talks and answers questions for 44 minutes at The PIT upstairs theatre: Ali’s Hour (Actually 44 Minutes)

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Stand-up Alex Koll (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central) tries out new material every night through Saturday at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Week At the Creek: Alex Koll

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

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, four-gal comedy group Georgie Aldaco, Danielle Gibson, Viviana Olen, and Katie Simon perform a series of surreal sketches that are both unsettling and charged with comedic energy. A long bit about a mother threatening to do something surprising to her husband and son is an instant classic (when you see it, you’ll have no doubt what sketch I’m talking about…). The show could be greatly improved with periodic nuanced emotion to create a roller coaster effect—right now the audience is hit with surface shock after shock, which after a while desensitizes and loses impact—but if you’re open to the purity of conceptual comedy that challenges your sanity, you’ll enjoy Former Business Partners: Everything Must Go

…and in the other half of this sketch double-bill, “Aaron & Brian lead their lonely friend Erik on a surreal, nightmarish odyssey to ‘get his dick wet.’ Elderly lesbians, impromptu Fosse numbers, dueling Katherine Hepburns, and the ominous Old Valley are all pit-stops on this journey to happiness, or at least maybe getting laid,” written by and starring Aaron Jackson, Erik Dies, and Brian Glidewell: Erik Dies, You’re Stupid and We Hate You

[$] 8:00 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Amy Schumer (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; star of Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Last Comic Standing, 30 Rock, great new DVD/CD Amy Schumer: Mostly Sex Stuff), Lenny Marcus (David Letterman, MTV), Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show), Jeff Lamp (Jay Leno, Comedy Central), and Godfrey (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, 30 Rock, VH1; films Zoolander, Original Gangsters, Soul Plane; 7 Up Yours ads) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam): Amy Schumer, Lenny Marcus, and More

[$] 8:00 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), 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), Chris Distefano (Comedy Central, MTV2’s Guy Code), and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street) hosted by Randy Humphrey: Judah Friedlander, Christian Finnegan, 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] [FREE] Seating at 8:00, show at 8:30 pm (RSVP to confirm your spot at FreeComedyWednesdays@gmail.com): Mark Normand (hilarious rising star; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; opens for Amy Schumer; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Kurt Metzger (staff writer for Inside Amy Schumer; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Gary Vider (hilarious writer & deadpan stand-up; for sample jokes, please click here), Adam Newman (Comedy Central, MTV, College Humor, host of Big Long Sets), Sean Donnelly (MTV, FOX News; host of many shows), and Matt Ruby (MTV; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here, blog Sandpaper Suit) performing stand-up at new show venue The Irish Exit (978 Second Avenue, off 52nd Street, in the back room) produced by Mark Normand, Matt Ruby, Gary Vider, and Sachi Ezura: Hot Soup

[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 squabbling) at UCB East performing as duo The Brothers Hines

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Two ace improvisors, Neil Casey (writer for SNL) and Zach Woods (cast member of The Office), make up duo scenes at the UCB Chelsea theatre: Casey & Woods

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): A comic’s comic who’s performed on David Letterman, Jay Leno, HBO, FX’s Louie, CNN, FOX, and three Comedy Central specials, and has been a frequent guest on Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn and Howard Stern, testing out material at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Nick DiPaolo

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($20): All you need to know: Daniel Kitson is one of the greatest comics alive, and he’s performing a one hour and 40 minute show at The Barrow Street Theatre (27 Barrow Street) through Saturday. All performances are sold out, which I why I haven’t been plugging it; except I saw it last night, and learned that if you sign up on the standby list there’s an excellent chance you’ll get in (god bless no-shows…). So if you didn’t heed my pleas last month to buy tickets in advance, you still have a solid shot of seeing, to my eye, Daniel’s best-ever scripted blend of stand-up & theatre: After The Beginning, Before The End

[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

[$] 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), Esther Ku (Last Comic Standing), Chris Distefano (Comedy Central, MTV2’s Guy Code), and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street) hosted by Randy Humphrey: Judah Friedlander, Esther Ku, and More

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: The wonderful Sasheer Zamata (highly charming, innovative rising star; Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer, FX’s Totally Biased, Apple Mac commercials; member of red-hot improv troupe Doppelganger, sketch troupe The Prom, and Harold Night troupe Bucky) 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; plus Sasheer is going to be a huge star, so catch her in this intimate setting while you can. (For tonight’s guests, 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

[TOP PICK] [$] 11:30 pm ($10 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Uncensored stand-up from Dave Attell (one of the most respected stand-ups in the biz; star of Showtime’s Dave’s Old Porn and Comedy Central’s Insomniac; HBO, David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents), Kurt Metzger (staff writer for Inside Amy Schumer; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), and Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam): The Nasty Show: Dave Attell, Kurt Metzger, Big Jay Oakerson, and More

Wednesday Open Mics & Jams

[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 5 minutes per comic at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Benel Germosen: Cracking It

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

6:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 4 minutes per comic. Get your name in the bucket by 6:15 pm to get signed up at ZirZamin (90 West Houston Street) hosted by Maria Heinegg & Mike Kaiser (who also host the booked stand-up Apology Show at 8:00 pm): Comics Anonymous 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 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

[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 Lucas Hazlett: Improdome

[FREE] 11:30: Sign up at 11:00 pm for the opportunity to make up scenes at The Magnet with group All American: 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.)

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 Tuesday 6/11/13

June 11, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Nick DiPaolo

Nick DiPaolo performs performs at 8:00 at Comedy Cellar, and at 10:00 at ComedyJuice (with “a special guest”)…

Daniel Kitson

…and Daniel Kitson, one of the most sharp, thoughtful, and hilarious comics alive, will be perfoming in NYC July 7-13; tickets will sell out, so grab them now at urlm.in/rpdx

Tonight’s Most Notable Shows
(in chronological order, with shows over $10 marked with $)

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm-Midnight ($7 for the whole evening): In this 5-hour extravaganza, five of The Magnet’s singing improv troupes make up a musical on the spot based on an audience suggestion, followed at 10:15 by a free show that lets audience members join in with a musical improv troupe to make up stories in song: Magnet Musical Megawatt

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): As a comics fan, I love this concept: an improv troupe will make up scenes while playing Superman, Batman, Flash, Wonder Woman, and other members of the Justice League of America at The PIT downstairs lounge: JLA Improv

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Comic book creators join super-hosts Alex Zalben, Justin Tyler, and Pete LePage in a lively & hilarious discussion about four-color pop culture at Fontana’s (105 Eldridge Street), with giveaways of comics and gift certificates (and if you can’t make it, watch in online here): Comic Book Club

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): John Mulaney (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; writer/performer for Saturday Night Live; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, one hour special & CD/DVD New in Town, VH1’s Best Week Ever; for John’s great bit on Weekend Update, please click here), Nick DiPaolo (star stand-up, with numerous appearances on David Letterman, Jay Leno, Louie; Emmy-nominated comedy writer, talk show host), and more performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Nick DiPaolo, John Mulaney, and More at Comedy Cellar

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($7): Michael Che (hilarious rising star stand-up; David Letterman, Comedy Central), Mike Drucker (hilarious stand-up; staff writer for Jimmy Fallon; freelance writer for SNL, The Onion, McSweeney’s), Gavin McInnes, and more performing at The Slipper Room (167 Orchard Street) hosted by Seth Herzog (Jimmy Fallon, VH1): Sweet

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($10; no min.): Kurt Metzger, Mara Marek, and more tell comedic stories for a live podcast at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Mind F#%k Live

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($15 & 2-drink min.): Al Madrigal (star correspondent for The Daily Show; Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno), Nick DiPaolo (star stand-up, with numerous appearances on David Letterman, Jay Leno, Louie; Emmy-nominated comedy writer, talk show host), 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 “an extra special guest” performing stand-up at the Gotham Comedy Club hosted by Jared Logan (rising star; Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, CNN, TBS): ComedyJuice

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink 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), Hannibal Buress (former staff writer for 30 Rock, Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Louie, The Eric Andre Show, host of Comedy Night, one-hour Comedy Central special Animal Furnace), Gregg Rogell (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Louie, Comedy Central), and more performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Judah Friedlander, Hannibal Buress, Gregg Rogell, and More at Comedy Cellar

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; hosts headliners on weekends, Comedy Juice Tuesdays at 10:00 pm; 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.)

Tuesday Open Mics

[TOP PICK] [ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): In this delightful weekly open-mic show, each comic has 3 minutes to try out a character-based bit (e.g., for a solo show, sketch, or audition) at The PIT downstairs lounge, hosted by Jen Kwok (Comedy Central) and Keisha Zollar (Doppelganger): Imposter 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

[FREE] 6:15 pm: Open mic for comedy of all types providing 2 minutes for each performer (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Jay Dean and Tynan DeLong: Two Nice Guys Open MIc

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: This weekly 2-hour open-mic storytelling show allows each performer a full 8 minutes to tell a compelling and funny tale at Queens LIC’s The Creek downstairs lounge, with tonight’s guest co-host Patrick J. Reilly (The I Love You Show) and host Jake Hart: The Dump

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): 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] 11:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up at UCB East hosted by Boris Khaykin, John Trowbridge, and/or Katie East: Tuesday Night Open Mic

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 9/16/12

September 16, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Eugene Mirman

Eugene Mirman (above) and Bobby Tisdale host stars who are likely to includie…

Daniel Kitson

…comedy genius Daniel Kitson on this final day of the Eugene Mirman 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:

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early walk-in open-mic stand-up show at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Face-Plant Comedy Showcase

[TOP PICK] 6:30 pm-11:00 pm ($10-$20): A comedy shorts screening and a top comics showcase, in Brooklyn’s Union Hall and Bell House, for this final evening of the Fifth Annual Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival

[FREE] 6:30 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 3 minutes per comic (unless not many folks show up, in which case there’ll be more time), with names drawn out of a bucket at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”) hosted by Emmy Blotnick, Matt Nedostup, and Sachi Ezurafor: Sledgehammer

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($8): Comics and other artists present their actual work from high school and earlier—video, poetry, plays, short stories, songs, etc.—at The PIT’s upstairs theatre curated by Chris Aurilio : Some of Our Early Work

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm ($27.25 & 2-drink min.) A unique organic talent who’s a regular guest on Conan O’Brien, and co-stared in the Comedians of Comedy tour and Comedy Central’s The Sarah Silverman Program, headlining one last night at the Carolines Comedy Club: Brian Posehn

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10) and 9:30 pm [FREE]: UCBwest’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

[FREE] 7:30 pm: Sketch, improv, and more at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City from comedy troupe Froduce

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($8): “Magician Michael Feldman pulls back the curtain, giving you a glimpse into the secret worlds of sleight-of-hand performers and psychic charlatans” at The PIT’s upstairs theatre: The Importance of Being Gullible

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Mark Normand (hilarious stand-up; Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Emily Heller (Comedy Central; staff writer for Rooftop Comedy; for ruminations on pregnancy, please click here), Adam Newman (Comedy Central, MTV, College Humor, comedy CD Not for Horses), Phil Hanley (Craig Ferguson), Matt Koff (Onion News Network, WitStream, 9 Am Meeting), and Charlie Kasov (MTV’s Guy Code) performing at RG’s free weekly show at the Three of Cups lounge (83 First Avenue at 5th Street): Sunday Night Stand-Up

8:00 pm ($5):Sketch comedy from a Magnet team directed by Chet Siegel and with a nerdy Jewish name: Darth Vader Ginsburg

8:00 pm ($5): Two improv troupes performing at The PIT’s downstairs lounge: Herschel and Gameface

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Kurt Metzger (Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Kate Hendricks, Zach McGovern, Joe Zimmerman, and Rob Haze performing in the East Village’s Beauty Bar for this free weekly show hosted by Adam Sokol, Brad Austin, and/or Nate Fridson: Comedy at the Beauty Bar

9:30 pm ($5): Magnet sketch comedy teams try out new material at this show with the on-the-nose title Magnet Sketch Teams

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with four minutes per comic, at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Molly Austin & Mike Brown: Vicious Cycle

[$] 10:00 pm (call 212.757.4100 for cover price, plus 2-drink min.) A stand-up who’s performed on Comedy Central, and has some fine bits about cigarettes and pedophiles, headlining for one night only at the Carolines Comedy Club: Mike Recine

[FREE] 10:00 pm:Jessimae Peluso (Last Comic Standing, Chelsea Lately, TruTV, Tyra Banks), Allison Castillo , and Hadiyah Robinson performing stand-up for this free weekly gay-themed show at Therapy hosted by Brad Loekle: Electro Shock Therapy Comedy Hour

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 1/19/12

January 19, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For my favorite stand-up jokes, please click here.

Daniel Kitson

Genius stand-up Daniel Kitson plays around with new material in ways only he can at Work in Progress...

Leslie Goshko

...and birthday gal Leslie Goshko and four other stellar storytellers attempt to fool you at The Liar Show

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $12 marked with $) include:

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Naomi Ekperigin (stand-up/improvisor/actress; Huffington Post) is tonight’s guest at this weekly open-mic storytelling show, with each performer given a whopping eight minutes to captivate & impress, at UCB East hosted by John Flynn: Oh, Hey Guys!

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up with comics’ names drawn from a bucket and each chosen one receiving three minutes at The Creek’s upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Corby Haas

6:30 pm ($5): Two shows about which I know nothing audition for a regular spot on the prestigious UCB Chelsea schedule: Dog Fleet and Newsadoozies. These might be great or awful; but at $2.50 per show, you can’t go far wrong either way. That’s part of the fun of Spank

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($12): Five funny people tell amazing stories. Three of the tales are absolutely true…but two of them are a pack of lies. The audience then asks questions to try and identify the fibber—and everyone who does gets a free t-shirt! Tonight’s yarn-spinners are birthday gal Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Manhattan Monologue Slam Champ, host of Sideshow Goshko), Jim O’Grady (WNYC, The New York Times), Kambri Crews (author ofBurn Down The Ground), Tracy Rowland (TV writer and producer), and Colin Dempsey (ComedyLand) performing at the 92YTribeca with host Andy Christie (The New York Times, NPR, WFUV’s CityScape, Moth GrandSlam Champion): The Liar Show

[FREE] 7:00 pm: In this free Magnet show, audience members (signing in at 6:00) can join in with improv troupe The Boss to make up scenes on the spot: Magnet Mixer

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5): “If you were alive in the 70’s, you may have attended some ‘Key Parties’ where you were randomly paired with someone to go home with and engage in free spirited coitus. (Today we either stay at home alone or congregate at an improv theater.) Key Party combines the 70’s arrangement with modern anxiety, exploring the rich moments leading up to that act of coupling and the fallout that follows” at UCB East with stellar comics Jordan Klepper, Laura Grey (delightful old-time radio style theatrical podcast Horrorgasm), and guest improvisors: Key Party; plus in the second half of this double-bill, improv based on the iPods, CDs, and mp3 players provided by audience members, executed by superb performers Fran Gillespie, Ryan Karels, Megan Neuringer, Jesse Falcon, Silvija Ozols, Doug Moe, Lou Perez, Sue Galloway, and Emily Axford: Soundtrack USA

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10 at the door or $11.78 in advance online): At this all-musical edition, top musicians Ted Leo, Corn Mo, and the Gregory Brothers (famed for auto-tuning the news) share memorable tales of their material being turned down at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) for Jon Friedman’s wonderful The Rejection Show

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($25 at the box office or $28 online): UK-based Daniel Kitson is one of the sharpest and most respected writer/performers alive. This is a rare opportunity to spend an intimate 90 minutes with a true genius of both stand-up and storytelling. This show is the latter—a carefully constructed, detail-packed theatrical tale of two people and the small, quiet moments that make up their lives. Daniel says it’s “about everything and nothing,” and that’s precisely right. After you see it, you may find it hard to not consider all the small moments lived by any person you pass by…and what the moments of your own life add up to. This one-man show played to packed houses at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, and is now running every day except Mondays through January 29th at Brooklyn’s St. Ann’s Warehouse (38 Water Street). Read the review from The New York Times, and the grab tickets for It’s Always Right Now, Until It’s Later

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Comedy duo Nick Kocher & Brian McElhaney perform new sketches atUCB Chelsea, as well as host stand-up and improv guests: BriTANicK: The Monthly Mankerthon

8:00 pm ($5): Two singing improv troupes, Hot Diner and THEM, make up entire musicals on the spot in this double-bill at The PIT upstairs theatre for the most on-the-nose show title tonight: Improvised Musical

8:00 pm-MIdnight ($7 for the entire evening): The Magnet co-owner helming The Armando Diaz Experience, plus house troupes The Boss, Junior Varsity, Hello Laser, and Phooka performing improv, followed by improv competition Inspirado (like UCBT’s Cage Match, but with a game-like challenge component) with Leviathan and last week’s winner competing at 11:00 pm: The Magnet’s Night Out

[$] 8:00 pm ($32.75 & 2-drink min.): A cast member of the much-missed Chappelle’s Showheadlining tonight, Friday, and Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Donnell Rawlings

8:00 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups Jon Rineman (Jimmy Fallon), Luke Thayer (MTV, Tyra Banks), Yvonne Orji, and Marvin Izquierdo, plus freestyle hip-hopper James Robilotta, performing at The PITdownstairs lounge hosted by comedic rapper Andrew Singer and Kara Klenk: Positively Awesome

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm (no cover, 1-item min.): Jessi Klein (fresh, unique, deliciously organic comic who’s one of the best stand-ups in the country; former staff writer for Saturday Night Live; Comedy Central, VH1, NBC, CNN, Adult Swim), Dan St. Germain (quick-witted & enormously likeable rising star; Jimmy Fallon, MTV, VH1; for reenactment of Dan’s breakup, please click here), Ryan Conner, Neruda Williams, and Darrin Rose performing stand-up at Luca Lounge (222 Avenue B off 14th Street) for this weekly comedy show hosted by Sean Crespo & Dan Wilbur and produced by Carol Hartsell: Lasers in the Jungle

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00ish pm: Terrific NYC stand-ups (the lineup is typically announced around 3:00 pm; for an update, please click here) performing on this free weekly show at the Kabin Bar and Lounge hosted by Chesley Calloway and/or comedy genius Sean Patton: Comedy as a Second Language

9:00 pm ($5): Typically terrific stand-ups (not yet announced) performing at UCB East with host Noah Garfinkel (co-host Joe Mande is at UCBT-LA this week): Totally J/K

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): The Emmy-winning writers of The Colbert Report gather on the UCB Chelsea stage to perform an all-improvised show at Seize the Mustard

9:30 pm ($5): Ashley Ward & Chris Grace host indie musical improv troupes, and also perform themselves as A/C, a musical monoscene duo, at The PIT upstairs theatre: Playlist

9:30 pm ($5): Improvisors (not announced) make up one-act plays on the spot at The PITdownstairs lounge for The Scene

[FREE] 9:30 pm: A monthly showcase of both stand-ups and improvisors at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City, hosted by stand-up Zach Broussard and improv troupe Priest & the Beekeeper: Pig Pile

[TOP PICK] [$] 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 through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Paul Mooney

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): One of the quickest and sharpest minds in comedy plays around with the audience in ways only he can at UCB East while developing new material for an international stand-up tour: Daniel Kitson: Work in Progress

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Genius improv trio Outlook of the Poet and ace musical improv troupe Diamond Lion compete for audience laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea for the raucous Cage Match

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

New Year, Healthier You: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Thyroid Disease.