NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 3/24/16

March 24, 2016

Ed HerbstmanMaster improvisor Ed Herbstman and friends make up scenes around one scripted bit at Hot Mess (9:00 pm, $10 for the entire evening, The Magnet at 254 West 29th Street)

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

[FREE] 7:00 pm: A free open forum for students and performers to connect with the folks who run The Magnet theatre, with this month’s topic LGTBQ: Magnet Theatre Town Hall Meeting

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm, 8:00 pm, 9:30 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 three shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) and an 8:00 pm show at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Thursday

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5): Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central), Rob Cantrell (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, HBO, VHI, FX’s Totally Biased, documentary Metaphysical Graffiti, High Times), Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, Chelsea Lately, writer for MTV’s Girl Code, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Stripped Stories, comedy album True Love), Mike Recine (Conan O’Brien), Stephanie Simbari, and Brian Parise performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Sean Crespo, Dan Wilbur, and Katina Corrao: Lasers in the Jungle

7:30 pm ($5): Sketches by writer/performers compete for audience laughs and votes at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Gabe Capone & Joanna Hausmann: Battle Sketch

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($8): “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 Dan Wilbur, Glenn Boozan, Taylor Moore, Mark Vigeant, and Sam Reece at Brooklyn’s Union Hall hosted by Colin O’Brien & Michael Wolf: Literati: A Comedy Show About the Greatest American Novels Never Written

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Suggestions for jokes are gathered from the audience and then pro stand-ups are forced to incorporate them into their sets at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue) hosted by Will Carey: You Can Use That

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm-Midnight ($10 for the entire evening): Two veteran house improv groups, master improvisor Ed Herbstman and friends improvise around one scripted bit in Hot Mess, themed improv show Hall of Mirrors (“every piece of this show reflects back some facet of every other piece, revealing the strange and spooky undercurrent of meaningful coincidence that might just underpin the universe as we know it”), and improv competition Inspirado, all for just $10 at The Magnet theatre: The Magnet’s Thursday Night Out

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Two sketch shows at the UCB Chelsea theatre: This Show Will Get a Cease and Desist and Eggs for Sale

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Sketch and improv at Brooklyn’s Legion Bar (790 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by Matt Strickland: I’d Rather Be Weird Than Good

8:00 pm ($5): A variety of comics performing songs, characters, and/or stand-up at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by sketch/improv group Martha

8:00 pm ($5): Three improv house groups make up scenes for an hour at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street): Detention + Gun Club + Dim Wit

8:30 pm ($5): Parker Denton and friends perform sketch at The PIT downstairs lounge: Delusions of Grandeur

9:00 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at UCB East typically hosted by Ashley Brooke Roberts & Jim Tews: Fresh Out

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): A comedic play written by Ryan Douglass, with a cast of seven directed by Anthony Oberbeck, spun off the fact “someone wrote a script titled Cut-Throat with Charlton Heston in mind for the lead and was able to hand it to him. Not much is known about the script other than Heston’s own belief that it ‘seems to have been written without adequately researching the realities of competition tennis.’ Unfortunately for us and Western culture, the movie was never made. Luckily, Ryan Douglass has written what he thinks that movie was probably about” at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street): Cut-Throat

9:00 pm ($5): Similar to The Dating Game, comics Bob Hansen, Scott Sharp, and Conrad Roth compete for the affections of an audience member at Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue) hosted by Joe Welkie: Dating is Hard in NYC

9:00 pm ($5): Skilled improvisors David Rysdahl & Paul Gutkowski make up a play on the spot at The PIT downstairs lounge as improv duo True East

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Breathtakingly subtle genius improvisor John Lutz (cast member of 30 Rock; six years as staff writer for Saturday Night Live; John and Scott) and extreme improvisor Peter Grosz (writer for The Colbert Report, star of over 100 Sonic fast-food commercials, stellar one-man show Recipe for Success) perform duo improv as 2 Square

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($8): Sex educator Lux Alptraum teams with NYC comics—who tonight are Molly Austin and LaKendra Tookes—to “take a tour of classic sex education videos, where some of America’s best community theater actors teach our nation’s youth all about puberty, sexual health, and what’s happening down at the STI clinic” at Brooklyn’s Union Hall: The Wonderful World of Boning: Sex Ed With a Sense of Humor

9:30 pm ($10): A romantic comedy involving show biz written by Marina Tempelsman & Niccolo Aeed, performed by Max Brand & Tessa Hersh, and directed by Kevin Laibson at The PIT upstairs theatre (123 East 24th Street): Role Play: A Story in Parts

[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue) hosted by Dan King: Swamp Thing

[FREE] 10:30 pm: “A curated hour of eclectic comedic material written in a week with no rehearsals” at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street): The Holy Fuck Comedy Hour

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Improv groups Fuck That Shit and Mermaids compete for your laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea in the raucous semi-finals of Cage Match

11:00 pm ($5): I have no idea what this show is about, but it’s hosted by Gary Richardson, John Reynolds, Carmen Christopher, and Joey Dundale at the UCB East theatre: $$$

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

6:00 pm ($3): If you’re a gal who’d like to try stand-up but are wary of being vulnerable in a tough male-dominated room, this show may be the perfect opportunity for you—an all-female open mic, with the first 15 comics to sign up (starting at 5:50 pm) getting 3 minutes each on stage at The PIT downstairs lounge: Ladies Night Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: All-gal stand-up open mic at UCB East hosted by Anna Drezen & Sue Smith: Open Michelle: Ladies Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up with comics’ names drawn from a bucket and each chosen receiving 2 minutes—and if that goes well, maybe a hug (but not actual puppies)—at The Creek’s upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Ross Parsons & Trey Galyon: Free Puppies

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

[ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): A weekly improv jam for which the number of participants on stage is determined by a roll of the dice at The PIT Loft (154 West 29th Street) hosted by Jon Monje, Glorillis Tavarez, Trumane Alston, and Julien Darmon: Chance Encounters Jam

[FREE] 7:00 pm: A weekly improv jam hosted by group Salt at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street): The Blender

[ALMOST FREE] 10:30 pm ($1): A chance for you to get on stage and improvise with PIT faculty at The PIT Loft (154 West 29th Street): Thursday After Class Jam

[FREE] 11:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show that’s first come, first serve, with each comic getting 3 minutes on stage at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue) hosted by Patrick Hastie: Beer, Booze, and Bits

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): A supportively silly jam for duo improv (you’ll be paired up on the spot) in which the audience shows “Good Scene!” at the end of every scene at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by improv group Judith: Good Scene!: A Judith 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; 99-seater; a top venue that’s a powerful rival of UCB, and often surpasses UCB when blending comedy with music and/or theatricality; shows free-$20)

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

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

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Comic Strip Live
(1568 Second Avenue, off 81st; Upper East Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Stand Up NY
(236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; Upper West Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

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

Other NYC Live Shows, Heavily Marked Down via Goldstar

The Stand

Trapped in a Room with a Zombie

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible BestNewYorkComedy.com…It must be exhausting keeping that monster of a website alive. It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, submit material to my short story anthology Ghosts on Drugs, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Saturday 2/7/15

February 7, 2015

Louis C.K. has a new comedy special. Nab it for a mere $5 here.

If you haven’t seen Julie Sharbutt’s Moved, learn more here.

Emma Willmann and Blair Socci

Stand-ups Emma Willmann, Blair Socci, and more tells stories about their most mortifying erotic experiences at the Museum of Sex for Natalie Wall’s Awkward Sex…and the City

Jay Pharoah

Saturday Night Live’s Jay Pharoah headlines tonight and Sunday at Carolines

Ed Herbstman

…and master improvisor Ed Herbstman is slated to join in at tonight’s edition of The Armando Diaz Experience

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

6:00 pm ($5): Musical improv from the group that hosts the weekly Pitch jam, tonight performing at The PIT upstairs theatre: [title of team]

[$] 6:00 pm ($20): Ted Greenberg (Emmy-winning David Letterman writer) performing a fun, fast-paced theatrical comedy show—complete with audience interaction and audience rides home!—at The Complete Performer

6:00 pm ($5): Improv troupes Fried Bologna, Tom Waits For No Man, Kroll & Kreye, and Sad Kids performing at The Magnet theatre: The Rundown

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm, 7:15 pm, 8:45 pm, 9:15 pm, 10:30 pm, 11:15 pm, and 12:15 am ($20-$24 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s stand-ups include Trevor Noah, Ryan Hamilton, Lynne Koplitz, Lenny Marcus, and Keith Robinson (hosting) at the 7:00 show; Trevor Noah, Ryan Hamilton, Greer Barnes, Lynne Koplitz, Lenny Marcus, and Marina Franklin (hosting) at the 7:15 show; Trevor Noah, Ryan Hamilton, Greer Barnes, and Sherrod Small at the 9:15 show; Dave Attell, Ben Bailey, Greer Barnes, and Keith Robinson (hosting) at the 10:30 show; and Dave Attell, Ben Bailey, Ryan Hamilton, Big Jay Oakerson, and Ricky Velez at the 12:15 show, with four of the shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane), and the 7:15, 9:15, and 11:15 shows at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Saturday

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm & 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): Ted Alexandro (one of thevery finest stand- ups in the country; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, two Comedy Central Presentshalf-hour specials; comedy album I Did It; frequently opens for Louis C.K.), Ben Bailey (Emmy Award-winning host of Cash Cab and NBC’s Who’s Still Standing?; Comedy Central Presents, Jay Leno), Gary Vider (fun deadpan stand-up; for great Conan O’Brien set, please click here; for more jokes, please click here), Mike Britt (Comedy Central), and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club: Ted Alexandro, Ben Bailey, and More

[TOP PICK] 7:00 ($5): Comedic musicians Matt Radlow & Betsy Kenney perform and host other funny musicians (not announced) at what’s likely to be a fun show at the UCB East theatre: Matt and Betsy Do Music

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

7:00 pm ($10): A one-woman show from Ali Levin playing “Miami’s most beloved spicy Cuban holistic wellness counselor, Viviana Cortez is on a quest to answer life’s toughest questions while healing her clients one churro at a time” at The PIT downstairs lounge: Steps to Salbachun with Viviana Cortez

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

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

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): Improv powerhouses Charlie Todd, Jim Santangeli, Natasha Rothwell, Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, and more at UCB Chelsea interview an audience member about where he or she grew up and then “turn that town’s tourist attractions, landmarks, hangouts, local celebrities, urban legends, and more into a hilarious show made up on the spot:” The Curfew: Not From Around Here

[$] 7:30 pm & 10:00 pm ($38.25 & 2-drink min.): Saturday Night Live’s Jay Pharoah does stand-up and performs his full range of characters (“on SNL I don’t do white people, but if you break me in half like a coconut, white just spills out”) headlining tonight and Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Jay Pharoah

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

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Improv groups Big Black Car (which includes Chris Grace, Nate Starkey, and Ashley Ward) and The Baldwins (which includes Micah Sherman Brigid Boyle, and Sarah Nowak) make stuff up at The PITupstairs theatre: Big Black Car and The Baldwins

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

8:00 pm ($10): A freestyle rapping long-form improv troupe takes the stage for nearly an hour at The PIT downstairs lounge: North Coast

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10): Improv group Airwolf—which includes such talents as Molly Lloyd, Tim Martin, Achilles Stamatelaky, John Frusciante, and Emily Axford, and in 2012 crushed 15 improv groups in a row at Cage Match, entirely owns the UCB East stage tonight at Airwolf: Let’s Go Back to Your Place

[FREE] 8:30 pm: This show-and-tell event encourages you to “bring your weird family photos, demonstrate how many flips you can do in a row, reveal the tattoo your uncle gave you at last year’s family retreat—share anything crazy, kooky, strange or insane; the best of the best will win prizes and bragging rights,” plus stand-up from Aaron Glaser (Jimmy Fallon, Wolf of Wall Street; host of Midnight Stand-Up), Ashley Brooke Roberts (co-host of Fresh Out), Andy Ross (The Onion), Aaron Glaser (UCB), Chip Dwyer, Shalewa Sharpe, and Lane Pieschel!, all at Brooklyn’s Over the Eight (594 Union Ave) hosted by Tom Cowell & Jeff Simmermon: Showcasey Jones

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:00 pm ($16.82 in advance online or $20 at the door; 15% discount on Pleasure Chest products with ticket): Storytellers & comics Seaton Smith (FOX’s Mulaney), Blair Socci (co-host of Nacho Bitches), Emma Willmann (AxisTV’s Live at Gotham), and Mike Kelton (improv groups Witch, UCB TourCo) tell tales of erotic encounters gone awry at Museum of Sex (233 Fifth Avenue, off 27th Streets) hosted by Natalie Wall: Awkward Sex…and the City

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): An improvised apocalypse from superb comics Anthony Atamanuik, John Murray, and more at the UCB Chelsea theatre: Goat

9:00 pm ($10): Magnet improvisors team up with poets at Kiss*Punch*Poem

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): “Musical sketch comedy that skewers and dissects pop culture one roll of the dice at at time” at The PIT upstairs theatre: Pop Roulette

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): 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 atThe PIT downstairs lounge? Attend at your own peril with hosts J. W. Crump and Jordan Hirsch: Gas Station Horror

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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: Hilarious, organic show in which stand-ups perform anything except stand-up—e.g., sketch, storytelling, improv, songs, dance, puppetry, and things we can’t even imagine—at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Reid Faylor, Kelly Fastuca, and/or Andrew Short: Underbelly

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

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Sharp improvisors Peter McNerney & Nick Kanellis make up scenes at The Magnet as comedy trio Trike

11:00 pm ($5): According to comedy duo Jenn Welch & Jay Malsky, “We think the world would be a better place if we ran it. So here’s your opportunity, live and in-person, to ask us anything on your mind. And since it’s 11:00 pm on a Saturday, anything on your mind is probably related to sex. So toss out a sexy topic or a sexish conundrum; we’ll have an opinion” at The PIT upstairs theatre: Here’s What I Would Say

11:00 pm ($10): A young improv group performs and hosts guests at The PIT downstairs lounge: Tickle Party: An Intimate Evening

[TOP PICK] 11:30 ($5): An enormously fun freestyle rap contest at UCB East with NYC comics (not announced), plus a volunteer from the audience!, hosted by superstar human beatbox Chris “Shockwave” Sullivan (The Daily Show, The Electric Company, Freestyle Love Supreme) and Victor Varnado (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central): Battlicious

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($5): Sabrina Jalees (irresistible dynamo stand-up and rising star; Comedy Central’s Adam Devine’s House Party, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever, MTV’s Failosophy, co-host of How Many Questions), Amber Nelson (bold, dynamic stand-up & character comic; Comedy Central; sketch group Murderfist), Seaton Smith (FOX’s Mulaney, Opie & Anthony Virus Tour), and Nick Turner (Jimmy Fallon, Seth Meyers, Comedy Central, VH1) performing stand-up at UCB Chelsea hosted by Aaron Glaser: Midnight Stand-Up

[TOP PICK] [FREE] Midnight: An eclectic monthly talk show hosted by Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central), with tonight’s guests 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; co-host of Myrtle Comedy), Valdaniel Martins (multi-instrumentalist), and April Brucker (Singing Telegram Delivery Puppeteer) at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Aftermirth

Saturday Open Mics and Jams

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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Veteran improvisors make up scenes with improv students from any school (selected by lottery) at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street):Student 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)

The Annoyance Theatre
(367 Bedford Ave. in Brooklyn; J/M/Z to Marcy or L to Lorimer; 50-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.)

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/The Standing Room
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club; free cover Fri-Sat with code LICVIP; 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.

If you have a comedy show you want considered for listing, simply create a Facebook page for the event—including price & lineup—make sure we’re FB friends, and invite me through that page.

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 Sunday 6/15/14

June 15, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

DC Comics

It’s the final day of Comic Con’s weekend convention at the Javits Center: Special Edition NYC

Dave Razowsky, Rachel Hamilton, and Ed Herbstman

…and ace improvisors perform as a trio for one night only at The Magnet: Razowsky & Hamilton & Herbstman

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] 10:00 am – 5:00 pm ($30): A comic book convention from the producers of New York Comic Con running today and tomorrow at the Jacob Javits Center. Today’s panels include 75-year retrospectives on both Marvel Comics and DC Comics, discussion of self-publishing and creator-owned comics, and “Lost Superheroes of the Golden Age:” Special Edition NYC

[FREE] 5:00 pm: A smorgasbord of of stand-up, comedic music, comedic dance, sketch, and more at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Chris O’Neil: Mishmash Variety Hour

6:00 pm ($5): Twin sisters Claire & Phoebe Tyers sing songs, and then an improv group make up scenes based on the lyrics, at The Magnet theatre: SceneSongs

7:00 pm ($5): Improvisors create children’s tales on the spot based on an audience suggestion at This Theater (154 West 29th Street, 2nd Floor): The Improvised Children’s Book

[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

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($7): Brilliant improvisors Ed Herbstman, Rachel Hamilton, and Dave Razowsky perform powerhouse trio improv at The Magnet theatre: Razowsky & Herbstman & Hamilton

[$] 7:30 pm ($49 & 2-drink min.) A TV and movie comic who first earned fame on Chappelle’s Show, and has gone on to star in the hour-long Comedy Central special I WIll Not Apologize and appear in TBS’ Are We There Yet?, headlining one last night at the Carolines Comedy Club: Charlie Murphy

8:00 pm ($5): Michelle Buteau (FOX’s Enlisted, Comedy Central, Last Comic Standing, Craig Ferguson, VH1’s Best Week Ever, @midnight), Chris Distefano (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV2’s Guy Code), Greg Johnson (Sirius Radio, co-host of Myrtle Comedy), Subhah Agarwal, Jake Young, and Julia Solomon performing at UCB East hosted by Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon): If You Build It

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00, 9:45 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Gary Gulman, Ryan Hamilton, Jon Fisch, UK’s Jimmy Carr, and Joe List at the 8:00 show, and Ted Alexandro, Mark Normand, Jon Fisch, and UK’s Jimmy Carr at the 9:45 show, with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Sunday

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Superb guest improvisors Micah Sherman, Doug Stoley, Morgan Philips, and Philip Markle, and guest improv groups Moonwater and The Scene Lottery, 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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Live stage readings of popular Saved by the Bell episodes, with each cast member allowed an optional 3-minute Zack Morris style “time out” for episode-specific stand-up or a fan fiction bonus scene at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Bayside Myself

[$] 8:00 pm ($15): Carmen Lynch (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing finalist, Comedy Central), 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), Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV, TruTV), Mike Recine (Conan O’Brien), and Nathan Rand performing stand-up that rips something or someone deserving to shreds at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street) hosted by Nathan Rand: An Invitation to a Beheading

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Typically terrific stand-ups (not announced) performing at Brooklyn’s Knitting Factory (361 Metropolitan Avenue) typically hosted by the wonderful 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 specials Animal Furnace and Live From Chicago): Comedy Night

9:00 pm ($5): Sketch group Party. performs a show about “a place where the Dad is treated with respect and not, say, savagely made fun of in a series of absurdist skits by a bunch of irreverent comedians” at The Magnet theatre: Dad Town

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Chip Dwyer TK Kelly, Shalewa Sharpe, and Brian Allen Mitchell performing at the East Village’s Beauty Bar for this free weekly stand-up show hosted by Adam Sokol, Brad Austin, and/or Nate Fridson: Comedy at Beauty Bar

[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), 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), Rachel Feinstein (finalist on Last Comic Standing; Inside Amy Schumer, HBO, The Apprentice, opens for Sarah Silverman on tour), Pat Dixon (Comedy Central Presents, FOX, VH1, E!), Monroe Martin (Last Comic Standing), and Mike Recine (Conan O’Brien) performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander, Nikki Glaser, Rachel Feinstein, and More

Sunday Open Mics & Open Stages

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early walk-in open-mic stand-up show (put your name in the bucket at 3:45), providing 3 minutes or more per comic at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City 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

[FREE] 5:30 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 3 minutes per comic (unless not many folks show up, in which case there’ll be more time), with names drawn out of a bucket at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”) hosted by Emmy Blotnick, Matt Nedostup, and/or Sachi Ezurafor: Sledgehammer

6:00 pm ($5): Open-mic stand-up that includes professional feedback on each comic’s 5-minute set at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.): Mic-Shop: Open Mic Workshop

6:00 pm ($5): Hour-long open mic stand-up providing 5 minutes per comic. Check-in is at 5:45 at the new Comedians Club of New York (158 West 72nd Street), which was formerly The Triad Theatre: Comedians Club Open Mic

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’s 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

[FREE] 10:15 pm: Open-mic show for sketch and character bits running 3-5 minutes at The Magnet hosted by Sebastian Conelli. Everyone who signs up—at 9:45 pm at the box office—is likely to get onstage: Sketch in Progress

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

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$15)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Comic Strip Live
(1568 Second Avenue, off 81st; Upper East Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Stand Up NY
(236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; Upper West Side club with typically solid lineups; 2-drink min.)

Laughing Devil
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club, with MST3K-style movie night on Thursdays; 2-drink min.)

 From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

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 Saturday 3/1/14

March 1, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Ed Herbstman

Master improvisor Ed Herbstman joins duo Nick Kanellis & Peter McNerney for tonight’s Trike

Rebecca Vigil

…and Rebecca Vigil, Myq Kaplan, and other superb comedic singers are in rap competition Battlicious

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

[TOP PICK] [$] 6:00 pm ($15, which includes 1 drink; reservations recommended by calling 212.989.9319): 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 does gets a free t-shirt! This evening’s yarn-spinners are Cyndi Freeman (Moth StorySlam champion, two-time FringeNYC award winner, burlesque performer , co-host of And I Am Not Lying and The Standard Issues), Steve Burns (Nickelodeon’s Blues Clues, The Moth Radio Hour), Joey Novick (New Jersey Councilman, political humorist), and Andy Ross (host of Real Characters) . Come to the West Village’s Cornelia Street Cafe (29 Cornelia Street) and let host Andy Christie (The New York Times, NPR, Moth GrandSlam champion, exceptionally nice guy) attempt to mislead you at The Liar Show

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm & 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): TV & movie star Janeane Garofalo (possibly 9:00 pm only), 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.), DC Benny (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, ABC’s The Unusuals), and more performing stand-up at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm, 7:15 pm, 8:45 pm, 9:15 pm, 10:30 pm, and 12:15 am ($20-$24 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Ali Wong at all shows except for the last one; PLUS Gregg Rogell, Greer Barnes, and Lenny Marcus at the 7:00 show; blowout lineup of Ted Alexandro, Paul Mecurio, Greer Barnes, and Marina Franklin at the 7:15 show; Russ Meneve, Greer Barnes, and James Smith at the 10:30 show; and Greer Barnes, Marina Franklin, and Big Jay Oakerson at the 12:15 show, with four of the shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane), and the 7:15 and 9:15 shows at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Saturday

7:00 pm ($10): A musical Harold—that is, long-form improv with song and dance—at The PIT downstairs lounge from group Big D and the Closers

7:00 pm ($10): Sketch comedy at The PIT upstairs theatre from group Boy Girl Boy Girl

7:30 pm ($10): Improv powerhouses Charlie Todd, Jim Santangeli, Natasha Rothwell, and more at UCB Chelsea interview an audience member about where he or she grew up and then “turn that town’s tourist attractions, landmarks, hangouts, local celebrities, urban legends, and more into a hilarious show made up on the spot:” The Curfew: Not From Around Here

7:30 pm ($10): Sharp Magnet improvisors “perform organic freeform improvisation in two mind-blowing parts; the only rule is that there are no rules:” The Weave

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($20): From the wonderful Gyda Arber and friends, this theatrical event: “Join FutureMate for the latest in post-Cataclysm technology and find your perfect match! Your hosts Matt & Pam will take you through the FutureMate system and help you locate that special someone—who knows, you may even leave with a new mate! Come see all the benefits that await you for doing your part to rebuild our great nation” at Brooklyn’s The Brick Theatre (575 Metropolitan Avenue; take the L subway to Lorimer or G to Metropolitan). This is the final show of the run, so attend tonight or risk staying single: FutureMate Meet & Mate Session

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($20; no min.): Russ Meneve (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno), Kurt Metzger (staff writer for Inside Amy Schumer; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Carmen Lynch (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing finalist, Comedy Central), Michelle Buteau (FOX’s Enlisted, Comedy Central, Last Comic Standing, Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central, VH1’s Best Week Ever, The Jenny McCarthy Show; for stand-up video about Utah, sharing, and tits, please click here), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), and Sherrod Small (writer/performer on TBS’ Are We There Yet?, Comedy Central, VH1) performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Russ Meneve, Kurt Metzger, Carmen Lynch, Michelle Buteau, and More

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Improv groups Big Black Car (which includes Chris Grace, Nate Starkey, and Ashley Ward) and The Baldwins (which includes Micah Sherman Brigid Boyle, and Sarah Nowak) make stuff up at The PIT upstairs theatre: BBC and The Baldwins

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($35 plus 2-drink min.): The co-star of NBC’s Whitney and star of a Comedy Central Presents special, and who’s also performed on Showtime and TBS, headlining one last night at the Carolines Comedy Club: Chris D’Elia

8:00 pm ($10): Smart & silly sketches at The PIT downstairs lounge from group The Foolhardy Manor

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

[FREE] 8:30 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at The Irish Exit (978 Second Avenue, off 52nd Street, in the back room) hosted by Gary Vider (hilarious writer & deadpan stand-up; for sample jokes, please click here): Comedy at Irish Exit

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): One of the gutsiest and most hilarious troupes in comedy history—with honors including being Cage Match Champion for three years in a row, and winning the 2011 ECNY Award for Best Improv Group—UCB Chelsea’s genius improvisors Death by Roo Roo

9:00 pm ($10): Magnet improvisors team up with poets at Kiss*Punch*Poem

9:30 pm ($10): “A monthly show featuring long form improv of three diverse schools of thought and culminating in a cross-team closing” at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Sharif Ali and/or Kelly Ann Rockwell: World’s Fair

[$] 9:30 pm ($11.34 online or $15 at the door): A young all-guy improv troupe making stuff up at The PIT upstairs theatre: Gentlemen Party

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 10:00 pm ($20 online using discount code HY): Valerie Hager was one of the breakout stars at last year’s FringeNYC Festival. A dazzling artist who can pretty much do it all, Hager performed a one-woman show based on her true-life experiences in her 20s as a stripper in Mexico, Alaska, and California. The writing is smart, honest, and brave; and just as impressive is Hager’s ability to bring the other people in her story to life using voice and movement. Plus Hager’s pole skills are spectacular. (For my full review, please click here.) This award-winning show—which was just accepted by the Edinburgh Fringe Festival—is back in NYC for just one last night at the LES’ COW Theatre (21-A Clinton Street) and is highly recommended: Naked in Alaska

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($20; no min.): Paul Mecurio (Conan O’Brien, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents), Dan St. Germain (enormously likeable and rapidly rising star who has several TV shows in the works; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half-Hour Special, The Electric Company, MTV, VH1), Kurt Metzger (staff writer for Inside Amy Schumer; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Michelle Buteau (FOX’s Enlisted, Comedy Central, Last Comic Standing, Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central, VH1’s Best Week Ever, The Jenny McCarthy Show; for stand-up video about Utah, sharing, and tits, please click here), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), and Sherrod Small (writer/performer on TBS’ Are We There Yet?, Comedy Central, VH1) performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Paul Mecurio, Dan St. Germain, Kurt Metzger, Michelle Buteau, and More

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($10): UCBT Artistic Director Nate Dern, Zhubin Parang (writer for The Daily Show), Tracey Wigfield (writer for 30 Rock), Michael Kayne (Baby Wants Candy, Diamond Lion), Aaron Jackson (Newsadoozies), and more form an improv troupe at UCB East that won this year’s prestigious Cage Match championship by springboarding scenes off interviewing an audience member about his or her love life: What I Did For Love

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($20): Ted Greenberg (Emmy-winning David Letterman writer) performing a fun, fast-paced theatrical comedy show—complete with audience interaction and audience rides home!—at the West Village’s Soho Playhouse: The Complete Performer

[TOP PICK] [FREE—plus free cake!] 10:00 pm: Hilarious, organic show in which stand-ups perform anything except stand-up—e.g., sketch, storytelling, improv, songs, dance, puppetry, and things we can’t even imagine—with tonight’s comics Jono Zalay, Alison Leiby & Alyssa Wolff, Charles Gould, Jessica Watkins, Ryan Beck, Kyle Ayers, Eli Yudin, and Casey James Salengo performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Reid Faylor, Kelly Fastuca, and/or Andrew Short, and followed post-show downstairs by free cake: Underbelly

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

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Master improvisor Ed Herbstman joins sharp improv duo Nick Kanellis & Peter McNerney making up scenes at The Magnet as comedy trio Trike

11:00 pm ($10): An hour of sketch comedy aimed to make you howl at The PIT downstairs lounge from group Forever Dog

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 11:30 ($5): A freestyle rap contest at UCB East with NYC comics—who tonight are Myq Kaplan (top stand-up and comedic singer), Rebecca Vigil (powerhouse improv singer), Joyelle Johnson, and returning champion Chaz Kangas—plus a volunteer from the audience!, hosted by genius human beatbox Chris “Shockwave” Sullivan (The Daily Show, The Electric Company, Freestyle Love Supreme) and Victor Varnado (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central) at one of my favorite monthly shows: Battlicious

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($5): Ali Wong (fearless, razor-sharp, hilarious comedy dynamo; Jay Leno, Comedy Central, FOX, NBC’s Are You There Chelsea?, film Savages), Jena Friedman (wry dark comedy stand-up and rising star; producer for The Daily Show, former staff writer for David Letterman), Frank Conniff (TV’s Frank on Mystery Science Theater 3000; Cinematic Titanic), Nick Turner (Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central, VH1), and more performing stand-up at UCB Chelsea hosted by Aaron Glaser: Midnight Stand-Up: Ali Wong, Jena Friedman, Frank Conniff, and More

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($20; no min.): 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), Dan St. Germain (enormously likeable and rapidly rising star who has several TV shows in the works; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half-Hour Special, The Electric Company, MTV, VH1), Adrienne Iapalucci (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, VH1), Michelle Buteau (FOX’s Enlisted, Comedy Central, Last Comic Standing, Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central, VH1’s Best Week Ever, The Jenny McCarthy Show; for stand-up video about Utah, sharing, and tits, please click here), and Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC) performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): MIke Lawrence, Dan St. Germain, Adrienne Iapalucci, Michelle Buteau, and Big Jay Oakerson

Saturday Open Mics and Jams

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early weekly open mic stand-up show (“starts late enough to sleep off that hangover but ends just in time to begin a new one”) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Jhoel Walkowski & Evan Davis: The Amateur Hour

[FREE] 5:30 pm: Walk-in open mic comedy show—stand-up, character, or funny story—providing 5 minutes per comic at The Fifth Estate Bar (506 5th Avenue, off 12th Street) hosted by Meghan O’Keefe: Open Mic-hael Douglas

5:30 pm ($5): Walk-in open mic, with sign-up at 5:15 pm and each stand-up performing for 5 minutes, at the Comedy Village Comedy Club (107 MacDougal Street): Comedy Village

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 Sunday 10/6/13

October 6, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Catch Michelle Wolf for just $7.37 headlining Tuesday at Carolines

Laurie Stanton's Sound Diet

Comedy genius Ed Herbstman and top theatre actors perform at Melanie Hoopes’ special mix of comedy, theatre, and simulated live radio: Laurie Stanton’s Sound Diet…

Risky Bottom

…and superb groups such as Risky Bottom conclude this year’s New York Sketch Comedy Festival

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

[TOP PICK] 2:00 pm-11:30 pm ($8 per show, $50 for all-you-can-see festival pass): A full day of sketch comedy, consisting of 15 shows playing at The PIT upstairs theater and downstairs lounge, for the conclusion of 4 days of this annual festival: New York City Sketch Comedy Festival 2013

[FREE] 5:00 pm: A smorgasbord of of stand-up, comedic music, comedic dance, sketch, and more at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Chris O’Neil: Mishmash Variety Hour (and a Half)

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($7): An extraordinary event that happens only once every few months at The Magnet, this show mixes the style of live radio with the depth of classic theatre and the energy of stage comedy to create something unique and unforgettable. It’s written and produced by Melanie Hoopes, and stars Melanie, her genius improvisor/actor husband Ed Herbstman, and top Broadway & off-Broadway actors. Tonight’s theme is Against Your Will. Be sure to reserve tickets because this is likely to sell out: Laurie Stanton’s Sound Diet

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10) and 9:30 pm [FREE]: UCB Chelsea’s signature improv comedy extravaganza, which typically includes superstars in the improv world such as Chris Gethard, and occasionally network TV & movie stars such as Amy Poehler and Horatio Sanz: ASSSSCAT 3000

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($7): 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), Barry Rothbart (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Comedy Central, MTV’s Punk’d, IFC’s Do Whatever), and Nick Turner (Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central, VH1, host of Nick Turner & Acquaintances) performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Union Hall hosted by Caroline Creaghead: Creaghead & Company

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Paul Mecurio (Conan O’Brien, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents), 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), Kevin Barnett (MTV’s Guy Code, Comedy Central, Sleepwalk With Me, College Humor), Doogie Horner, Kiran Deol, and Casey Ley performing stand-up at UCB East with host Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon): If You Build It

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm, 9:45 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Todd Barry, Nikki Glaser, and Ryan Hamilton at the 9:45 pm, and Mark Normand at the 11:30 show, performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Sunday

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Adam Newman (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV, host of Big Long Sets), Jeffrey Joseph (Jay Leno, HBO, FOX’s In Living Color, Comedy Central), Keith Alberstadt (David Letterman, VH1, contributor to SNL’s Weekend Update), Hadiya Robinson, Tim Dillon, and Ali Prier performing at the Three of Cups lounge (83 First Avenue at 5th Street) hosted by RG Daniels: Sunday Night Stand-Up

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups “have to perform their mental gymnastics while carrying the burden of an entire culture on their backs; and when all is said and done, only one can walk away with The Trophy of Insensitivity, which allows a one-time use of a pre-determined slur. The winner of the prize will be determined by a select few audience members, so don’t miss your chance to give away hate speech guilt-free,” with tonight’s comics Aparna Nancherla, Justin Williams, J.F. Harris, Josh Rabinowitz, and Gabriel Pacheco performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by AJ Thompson and Koshin Egal: The Quota

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Adrienne Iapalucci (Last Comic Standing, VH1), Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, MTV), Brian Jian, and Jason Kanter performing stand-up in 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

9:30 pm ($7): Sketch groups Daphne and Fred perform at The Magnet theatre: Magnet Sketch Teams

Sunday Open Mics & Open Stages

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early walk-in open-mic stand-up show (put your name in the bucket at 3:45), providing 3 minutes or more per comic at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City: Face-Plant Comedy Open Mic

[FREE] 5:30 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 3 minutes per comic (unless not many folks show up, in which case there’ll be more time), with names drawn out of a bucket at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”) hosted by Emmy Blotnick, Matt Nedostup, and/or Sachi Ezurafor: Sledgehammer

6:00 pm ($5): Open-mic stand-up that includes professional feedback on each comic’s 5-minute set at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.): Mic-Shop: Open Mic Workshop

[FREE] 10:00 pm: The only open-stage show for entire groups of improvisors and sketch comics, running weekly at UCB East hosted by Austin Rodrigues: Bring Your Own Team: Improv/Sketch Team Jam

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

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$15)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, specialty & lineup shows weekdays; 2-drink min.)

Eastville Comedy Club
(85 East 4th Street; strong weekend lineups; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
(99 MacDougal Street; convenient if Comedy Cellar’s sold out; no cover using code HyReviews; 2-drink min.)

From legendary NYC comedy site Brooklyn Vegan: If you want to know what is happening in NYC comedy on a particular day, you gotta get hip to this dude Hy Bender and his site Best New York Comedy. The site is updated daily and features a super exhaustive look at what is happening in the NYC comedy world that particular day. The site is updated religiously…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 6/16/13

June 16, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Surreal stand-up Joe Pera headlines at Carolines on July 2nd;
nab tickets for a mere $7 (using code BREAKOUT) here

Jackie Hoffman and Leslie Goshko

Jackie Hoffman and Leslie Goshko tell hilarious tales at “Shut Up: An All-Female Storytelling Show”…

Neal Brennan

…Neal Brennan performs at Comedy Night and the 9:45 pm Comedy Cellar…,

Ed Herbstman

…and improv master Ed Herbstman teams with two other stellar improvisors at Herbstman & Razowsky & Hamilton

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

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($7): Three master improvisors at The Magnet who are likely to dazzle you: Ed Herbstman & David Razowsky & Rachel Hamilton

[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: ASSSCAT 3000

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): 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), Carmen Lynch (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing finalist, Comedy Central), Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central’s Indecision 2012), Adam Conover (VH1’s Best Week Ever, Olde English, College Humor, host of Fresh Out), Seaton Smith (Opie & Anthony Virus Tour), and Anthony DeVito (Conan O’Brien, VH1, FX) performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Kara Klenk: If You Build It

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): All-gal storytelling show of “true tales with feelings; so many feelings…,” tonight starring Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Sirius XM, Huffington Post, host of Sideshow Goshko), Jackie Hoffman (Broadway’s The Addams Family), and Moujan Zolfaghari at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Caitlin Brodnick and Lisa Kleinman: Shut Up: An All-Female Storytelling Show

[TOP PICK] [FREE] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm (FREE online using discount code OFFICIAL; no min.): 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), Ari Shaffir (Conan O’Brien, HBO’s Down and Dirty, Comedy Central, National Lampoon), Seaton Smith (Opie & Anthony Virus Tour), Adrienne Iapalucci (Last Comic Standing, VH1), and more performing stand-up that rips something or someone deserving to shreds at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Invitation to a Beheading

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Colin Quinn (SNL, Comedy Central’s Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn, HBO, NBC, Broadway), Trevor Noah (South African comic; Jay Leno, Chelsea Lately, one-man show Born a Crime), Lynne Koplitz (Joan Know’s Best, IFC’s Z Rock, host of WB’s Life & Style), Mike Vecchione (Last Comic Standing, Howard Stern), and Jeff Lamp (Jay Leno, Comedy Central) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by William Stephenson (FX’s Louie, The Chris Rock Show): Colin Quinn, Trevor Noah, Lynne Koplitz, and More

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Joe Larson (Jay Leno), Mike Brown, Jason Burke, and more performing at the Three of Cups lounge (83 First Avenue at 5th Street) hosted by RG Daniels: Sunday Night Stand-Up

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($7): Great lineup of 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), Neal Brennan (razor-sharp, edgy comedy veteran; HBO, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, co-creator of Chappelle’s Show), The Lucas Brothers (Jimmy Fallon), Kevin Avery, and George Gordon performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Knitting Factory (361 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by the wonderful Hannibal Buress (former staff writer for 30 Rock and Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Louie, The Eric Andre Show): Comedy Night

[TOP PICK] [$] [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): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Harris Stanton (Comedy Central), and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

9:00 pm ($7): Sketch comedy at The Magnet from innovative group Jacktown and Breakfast For Dinner: Magnet Sketch Teams

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Kevin Barnett (MTV’s Guy Code, Comedy Central, Sleepwalk With Me, College Humor), Alison Leiby (host of It’s a Long Story), Shalewa Sharpe, and Eric Grundhauser performing stand-up in 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] [$] 9:45 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Killer lineup of 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), 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), Neal Brennan (razor-sharp, edgy comedy veteran; HBO, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, co-creator of Chappelle’s Show), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), and Phil Hanley (Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by William Stephenson (FX’s Louie, The Chris Rock Show): Amy Schumer, John Mulaney, Neal Brennan, and More

Sunday Open Mics & Open Stages

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

[FREE] 5:30 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 3 minutes per comic (unless not many folks show up, in which case there’ll be more time), with names drawn out of a bucket at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”) hosted by Emmy Blotnick, Matt Nedostup, and/or Sachi Ezurafor: Sledgehammer

6:00 pm ($5): Open-mic stand-up that includes professional feedback on each comic’s 5-minute set at Queens LIC’s Laughing Devil Comedy Club (4738 Vernon Blvd.): Mic-Shop: Open Mic Workshop

[ALMOST FREE] 9:30 pm ($1): Open-mic comedy, with 4 minutes per performer, at The PIT downstairs lounge: Child Support

[FREE] 10:00 pm: The only open-stage show for entire groups of improvisors and sketch comics, running weekly at UCB East hosted by Austin Rodrigues: Bring Your Own Team: Improv/Sketch Team Jam

[FREE] 10:15 pm: Open-mic show for sketch and character bits running 3-5 minutes at The Magnet hosted by Sebastian Conelli. Everyone who signs up—at 9:45 pm at the box office—is likely to get onstage: Sketch in Progress

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

Upright Citizens Brigade Chelsea
(307 West 26th Street; 150-seater; shows free-$10; one of the most respected comedy theatres in the world)

Upright Citizens Brigade East
(153 East 3rd Street; 99-seat main theatre, bar area for open mics; shows free-$10)

The PIT
(123 East 24th Street; 99-seat upstairs theatre, 40-seat downstairs theatre; shows free-$15)

The Magnet
(254 West 29th Street; 60-seat theatre; shows $5-$10)

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

The Stand
(239 Third Avenue; recent competitor to Comedy Cellar; no drink min.—support this policy!)

Carolines Comedy Club
(1626 Broadway; focuses on the world’s top headliners, who perform hour-long sets; 2-drink min.)

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; 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.)

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 Saturday 4/13/13

April 13, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Jim Norton and Michael McDonald

Jim Norton continues headlining at Carolines; Michael McDonald concludes headlining at Gotham…

Ed Herbstman

…master improvisor Ed Herbstman teams with Nick Kanellis at Trike…

Melanie Hamlett

…and hilarious storyteller Melanie Hamlett performs at Underground Americana

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 weekly open-mic stand-up show (“starts late enough to sleep off that hangover but ends just in time to begin a new one”) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Jhoel Walkowski & Evan Davis: The Amateur Hour

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 6:00 pm: TV & Broadway stand-up star Colin Quinn performs bits from a show he’s developing for an off-Broadway run that looks at US history “from the Founding Fathers to the Kardashians” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Unconstitutional with Colin Quinn

6:00 pm ($5): Improv troupes The Gang, Kelly & Justin, and Human Pyramid performing at The Magnet to kick off your Saturday evening: The Rundown

7:00 pm ($5): All-gal improvisors Ashley Ward, Brigid Boyle, Alexis Saarela, and Elizabeth Findlay perform at The PIT upstairs theatre as troupe Taco Supreme

[FREE] 7:00 pm: A sketch comedy group that formed at Vassar and “will melt your face with college loans” performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Shoulder Pads

7:00 pm ($5): Improv troupes not affiliated with any comedy school compete at UCB East for audience laughs and votes—and the privilege to go on to perform at the primary Cage Match show at UCB Chelsea—in this show hosted by the delightful Amey Goerlich & Ryan Karels (Krompf): Indie Cage Match

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm ($20 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), Marina Franklin (developing into one of the finest stand-ups in the country, with an uncommonly gentle, graceful style that’s pure joy; Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Chappelle’s Show, Craig Ferguson, VH1, Comedy Central’s Premium Blend), Lenny Marcus (David Letterman, MTV), Michael Che (David Letterman, Comedy Central), John Joseph (Comedy Central, The View), and Sam Morril (Comedy Central) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Erik Rivera (Jay Leno, MTV): Judah Friedlander, Marina Franklin, Lenny Marcus, Michael Che, and More

7:30 pm ($10): Improv powerhouses Charlie Todd, Jim Santangeli, Natasha Rothwell, and more at UCB Chelsea interview an audience member about where he or she grew up and then “turn that town’s tourist attractions, landmarks, hangouts, local celebrities, urban legends, and more into a hilarious show made up on the spot:” The Curfew: Not From Around Here

7:30 pm ($10): Sharp Magnet improvisors “perform organic freeform improvisation in two mind-blowing parts; the only rule is that there are no rules:” The Weave

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($42 & 2-drink min.): A stand-up veteran who’s appeared on David Letterman, Jay Leno, and Last Comic Standing; hosted the HBO stand-up showcase Down and Dirty; was a cast member of the wonderful though short-lived HBO sitcom Lucky Louie, and performed his own HBO half-hour One Night Stand special; has appeared in such hit films as Spider-Man; is a regular on XM Satellite Radio’s The Opie & Anthony Show; and is the author of the book Happy Endings, headlining tonight (previously reported sold out, but apparently more room was made) and Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Jim Norton

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm & 10:00 pm & 11:45 pm ($25 & 2-drink min.): A 10-year veteran cast member of Mad TV, and performer on numerous other top TV shows (for a sample, please click here), headlining one last night at the Gotham Comedy Club: Michael McDonald

8:00 pm ($10): Barry Rothbart (Jay Leno, Comedy Central, MTV’s Punk’d, IFC), Ben Kronberg (Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, ABC), Roger Hailes (Jimmy Fallon, Chappelle’s Show, VH1, MTV; writer for FUSE’s A Different Spin with Mark Hoppus), musical guest Steve Milton, and more performing at Brooklyn’s Union Hall for a show hosted by Greg Barris: Heart of Darkness

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Erin Lennox, Anthony DeVito, and Nick Maritato, improv troupe Butts, and more performing at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Peggy O’Leary: Hard, Lonely, and Vicious

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10): UCBT improv troupe Airwolf—which includes such talents as John Frusciante, Molly Lloyd, Tim Martin, and Emily Axford, and last year crushed 15 improv groups in Cage Match, entirely owns the UCB East stage tonight at Airwolf: Let’s Go Back to Your Place

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): One of the gutsiest and most hilarious troupes in comedy history—with honors including being Cage Match Champion for three years in a row, and winning the 2011 ECNY Award for Best Improv Group—UCB Chelsea’s genius improvisors Death by Roo Roo

9:00 pm ($10): A sketch troupe using recent events as the foundation for material performing at The PIT upstairs theatre directed and co-written by J.D. Durkin with co-writer Scott Swayze: Gramercy Boulevard

9:00 pm ($10): Magnet improvisors team up with poets at Kiss*Punch*Poem

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:15 pm ($24 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), Lynne Koplitz (Joan Know’s Best, IFC’s Z Rock, host of WB’s Life & Style), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle Show, For the Love of the Game), Michael Che (David Letterman, Comedy Central), John Joseph (Comedy Central, The View), and DC Benny (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, ABC’s The Unusuals) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show): Judah Friedlander, Lynne Koplitz, Greer Barnes, Michael Che, and More

[$] 9:30 pm ($15): “A cabaret of darkly funny songs and topical sketch comedy about culture and politics,” following sold out shows at Joe’s Pub and now enjoying a long run at The PIT upstairs theatre: Political Subversities

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($10): UCBT Artistic Director Nate Dern, Zhubin Parang (writer for The Daily Show), Tracey Wigfield (writer for 30 Rock), Michael Kayne (Baby Wants Candy, Diamond Lion), Aaron Jackson (Newsadoozies), and more form an improv troupe at UCB Chelsea that won this year’s prestigious Cage Match championship by springboarding scenes off interviewing an audience member about his or her love life: What I Did For Love

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($15): Ted Greenberg (Emmy-winning David Letterman writer) performing a fun, fast-paced theatrical comedy show—complete with audience interaction and audience rides home!—at The Complete Performer

[FREE] 10:00 pm: “Staged readings of scenes from selected plays, starring comedians” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Emily Fleming & Jarrid Reed: Fly Space: The Test Drive

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Master improvisor Ed Herbstman teams with Nick Kanellis for one night only at The Magnet to form comedy duo Trike

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): At UCB Chelsea, improv troupe Grandma’s Ashes—which includes stellar talents Ryan Karels, Morgan Grace Jarrett, Brandon Scott Jones, and more—promises to “take your stories of the tragic and depraved and scatter them into laughter:” Grandma’s Ashes Gets Dark

11:00 pm ($8): Nick Carrillo, Langston Belton, and Devin James Heater perform a post-apocalyptic improvised comedy—exploring the relationship of three men trapped in a Generic Underground Shelter—at The PIT upstairs theatre: G.U.S.

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($5): Storyteller Melanie Hamlett (brilliant writer/performer; two-time Moth StorySlam Champion, co-author of the book Leave the Lipstick, Take the Iguana, contributor to Marie Claire Magazine and Nerve.com, amazing blog, roving adventurer), character improvisor Anthony Atamanuik (30 Rock, Conan O’Brien, Huffington Post, Death by Roo Roo, The Nights of Our Lives, The Tony and Johnny Show), stand-ups Mark Normand (red-hot rising star; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here) and Sean Donnelly (MTV, FOX News; host of many shows), and singer/songwriter Megan Kerper performing at UCB Chelsea with hosts Andy Rocco & Steven Slate: Underground Americana

[FREE] Midnight: Stand-up and sketch (performers not announced) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Kingmaker Sketch

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.