NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 8/1/16

August 1, 2016

Best New York Stand-Up with Myq Kaplan is a new show produced by me that lives up to its name—the debut next Friday August 5th includes Mike Lawrence, Sean Patton, Mark Normand, Chris “Shockwave” Sullivan, and more TBA, plus host Myq Kaplan offering observations following each set. For details on this group of comedy giants, please click here. For further info on the show and to nab tickets (a mere $10 each), please click here.

Eric Andre

Eric Andre (hilarious wild man star of Adult Swim’s The Eric Andre Show), Mark Normand (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, Inside Amy Schumer, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever; comedy album Still Got It; opens for Amy Schumer), Jackie Kashian (Comedy Central Presents, Last Comic Standing; for cartoon about LA pet owners, please click here), Reggie Conquest, Peggy O’Leary, J.P. McDade, and Raghav Mehta guest-hosted by Alzo Slade: Night Train: Eric Andre, Mark Normand, Jackie Kashian, and More (8:00 pm, $8, Brooklyn’s Littlefield at 622 Degraw Street; take R subway to Union 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] [$] 7:00 pm ($5 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Broadway, TV, and film star Colin Quinn (Trainwreck, comedy national treasure) hones material for a one-man show at The Fat Black Pussycat Lounge (130 West 3rd Street): Colin Quinn: Ruined!

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm, 9:30 pm, and 11:30 pm ($12 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): Comedy Cellar Monday

7:30 pm ($5): A one-woman show by Susan-Kate Heaney about the troubles that followed her mother joining Facebook at The PIT Loft (154 West 29th Street): Facebook with Mom

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($15): Sean Patton (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; killer sets on Jimmy Fallon and Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1, feature film Wifed Out; co-host of Esquire Network’s Best Bars in America; frequent guest host of Whiplash), Michelle Buteau (VH1’s Morning Buzz and Best Week Ever, Comedy Central’s Key & Peele, FOX’s Enlisted, Craig Ferguson, Last Comic Standing, @midnight, comedy album Shut Up), Ben Kronberg (Jimmy Kimmel, Seth Meyers, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, ABC), and headliner Nick Thune (Comedy Central Presents, Jay Leno, Jimmy Fallon) performing stand-ups at Brooklyn’s Union Hall: Sean Patton, Michelle Buteau, and Ben Kronberg Opening for Nick Thune

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): At the UCB Chelsea theatre, a mini-play “exploring everything you love about karaoke: mediocre singing, friendship, Tsing-Tao, accidental meet cutes, homicidal Korean women, and of course your favorite 90’s jams!”: Let’s Check Out That Karaoke Spot!

…and in the second half of this double-bill, sketch group One Idiot performs a parody of series such as Serial and Making a Murderer: This Murder A Real Murder

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Mike Cabellon, Adrien Pellerin, Katie Sicking have written and star in this musical about “three Millennial janitors who band together to launch a promising enterprise that breaks every promise from boom to bust; it’s never about the product, it’s an excuse to give a TED Talk” at The PIT upstairs theatre (123 East 24th Street): Meet the CEOs: A Start-Up Musical

8:00 ($5): : Dean Haspiel (HBO’s Bored To Death, Marvel Comics), Carmen Christopher (MTV, IFC), and Mina Liccione (STOMP) performing stand-up and/or being interviewed at UCB East hosted by Nat Townsen: Downtown Variety Hour

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Emma Willmann, Cyrus McQueen, Nick Naney, Sarah Tollemache, and Shalewa Sharpe performing at Brooklyn’s The Topaz (251 Bushwick Avenue) hosted by Paul Lombardo: Dodgers Baseball Comedy

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Four improvisers form teams with comics they’ve never performed with before at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: The Kaleidoscope

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($5): Frank Conniff (TV’s Frank on Mystery Science Theater 3000) hosts as “Moodsy, the Clinically Depressed Owl showing weird/crappy old cartoons in between sets,” with guests Sean Lynch, Liam McEneaney, and Carolina Hildago at Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue). Described by Patton Oswalt as “like a kid’s show done in Bosnia,” it’s Frank Conniff’s Cartoon Dump

8:30 pm ($5): Producers, writers, and other staff members of TruTV show Impractical Jokers improvise scenes at The PIT Loft (154 West 29th Street): Impractical Jokers Staff Infection

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Andy Curtain, Debbie Bazza, Ken Schultz, Dan Howlett, Vicky Kuperman and Max Cohen performing at Brooklyn’s Freddy’s Backroom (627 5th Avenue) hosted by Calvin S. Cato & Richard James: Ed Sullivan on Acid

9:30 ($5): House sketch groups Mama’s Gotta Go and Choir try out new material at UCB Chelsea for Maude Night

9:30 pm ($5): Improv veterans Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, Phil Jackson, and/or Steve Theiss hosting & performing in a show at UCB East with guest improvisors: Improv Nerds

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Laurie Kilmartin, Derek Gaines, Sarah Tollemache, Joe Praino, Shane Torres, Dean Delray, Theo Von, and Dave Temple perform for this free weekly show at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue, off 20th Street) hosted by Aaron Berg (TV series 24 Hour Rental, documentary A Universal Language): Frantic Mondays: Laurie Kilmartin and More

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Each stand-up performs a set, then improv group The Bodega Cats makes up scenes based on the material, at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue); audience applause then determines the “winner” of Rumble

10:30 pm ($7): Comics compete on their knowledge of X-Men at The Magnet theatre: Stump Podcast: X-Men Trivia Challenge

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest comics in the world-who aren’t announced in advance, but it’s usually a great lineup and often an extraordinary one—at UCB Chelsea typically hosted by Aparna Nancherla (one of the best stand-ups in the country; writer for Seth Meyers; Conan O’Brien, @Midnight, comedy album Just Putting It Out There). Reservations go quickly, but you can probably get in if you arrive early and are okay with standing: Whiplash

Monday Open Mics & Jams

4:30 pm-7:00 pm ($5 plus 1 drink min., with drinks as low as $2): Walk-in stand-up open mic with two rounds, the first providing 5-6 minutes per set and the second 2-3 minutes per set, at The Grisly Pear (107 MacDougal Street) hosted by Tuval Mor: Kickin It Open Mic

5:00 pm ($5): Two-hour open-mic for 20 stand-ups performing for 5 minutes each, with sign-up online here, at the Stand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): Stand Up NY Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open mic stand-up show that provides each performer whose name is pulled from a bucket 3 minutes on stage. Arrive at around 5:45 to sign up, or wait for the late bucket at 6:15, to perform at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue) hosted by Matt Anderson: First Stop Open Mic

6:00 pm & 8:00 pm (no cover, 1 drink min. for both comics and audience members): Open mic stand-up providing 5-7 minutes per comic, with each show running 1 hour and 45 minutes. Arrive 30 minutes before the show you want to be in to get on the signup sheet. This is a fine opportunity to perform at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club Open Mic

7:30 pm ($10; sign-up starts at 7:00 pm): Open mic for stand-ups, storytellers, singers, poets, actors, and more, with 5 minutes per performer and 25 slots available, at The Parkside Lounge (317 East Houston Street, off Avenue B) hosted by Nathan P., followed by a raucous afterparty with dancing & drink specials from 10:00 to midnight: Inspired Word’s Open Mic Joint

[FREE] 10:30 pm: Improv veterans Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, and Phillip Jackson hosting & performing in a show at UCB East with improvisors taken from the audience…and who may include you: Improv Nerds Jam

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Open mic stand-up show that provides each performer whose name is pulled from a bucket 4 minutes on stage at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Joseph Robert: PBR & Scrap Paper Open Mic Stand-Up

11:00 pm ($3): Open mic stand-up, with each comic getting 5 minutes and room for 15 comics who sign up per show, at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by John Field: The Power Exchange

 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

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.

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NYC Top Comedy Choices for Saturday 1/23/16

January 23, 2016

PLEASE NOTE: Most of the shows listed below have been CANCELED due to the blizzard. Please double-check on any show you were planning to attend, because the chances are it’s not happening tonight. Most shows will be rescheduled post-blizzard.

Eric AndreA hilarious wild man who’s the creator & co-star of Adult Swim series The Eric Andre Show, and has also performed on Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, ABC’s Apartment 23, FXX’s Man Seeking Woman, Comedy Central, FOX, and TBS headlines for just one night at Carolines: Eric Andre (7:30 pm & 10:00 pm, $31.25 plus 2-drink min., Carolines Comedy Club at 1626 Broadway)

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:

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

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 5:45 pm, 8:00 pm, 10:00 pm, and midnight ($16.25 online using discount code DAYAFTER; no min.): Dan St. Germain, Big Jay Oakerson, Adrienne Iapalucci, and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue, off 20th Street): The Stand Saturday

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

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($10): “On every improv team there is the glue, the person who just tries to hold shit together while everyone descends into madness around them. Longtime UCB performer Silvija Ozols gathers some of her favorite gluey types to perform a fully improvised show. Will they stick to each other? Or will they end up huffing themselves into oblivion? Has this analogy been taken too far or is there room for one last pun? GLUE be the judge!” at the UCB East theatre: Gluebag

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Stand-up Dan Wilbur (College Humor, McSweeney’s, The Onion News Network, Someecards, author of How Not to Read: Harnessing the Power of a Literature-Free Life) tries out material one last night this week at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue): Dumbing it Down with Dan Wilbur: Grimm’s Fairy Tales

7:00 pm ($5): Three improv groups performing at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street): New Year, New You + Fetch + Distant Cousins

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): “David Bowie returned to his home planet on January 10, 2016, leaving us his 40-plus years legacy of music, magic, and mystery. Jay Malsky, Adrian Sexton, and Chris Booth host a night of comics paying tribute to the Thin White Duke, Ziggy Stardust, Aladdin Sane, and the Man Who Fell to Earth. Put on your red shoes and dance the blues! Come dressed as your favorite Bowie-era and you might win a prize!” at The PIT downstairs lounge: Oh! You Pretty Things: Underground Cabaret Tribute to David Bowie

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): Improv powerhouses Charlie Todd, Jeff Hiller, Jim Santangeli, Natasha Rothwell, Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, Kevin Hines, Erik Tanouye, and John Timothy 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

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

7:30 pm ($5): Nearly a dozen stand-ups each perform 5-minute sets at Astoria Queens comedy venue QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue) hosted by Chris Gersbeck: QED Live

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: In this solo storytelling double-bill, first David Lawson tells fascinating takes about how he makes his living handing out flyers in Times Square while competing with a wide variety of unusual characters for the attention of tourists; and then Will Carey talks about turning hardships into laughs, all at Bunga’s Den (137 West 14th Street, between Sixth & Seventh Avenues): Flyer Guy and Laugh Through the Sad

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Improv groups Gypsy Danger (which includes brilliant comics Katie Hartman and Evan Kaufman, and which will make up a feature film on the spot) and The Baldwins (which includes brilliant comics Micah Sherman and Sarah Nowak) make stuff up at The PIT upstairs theatre: Gypsy Danger: The Improvised Movie and The Baldwins

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Politically incorrect stand-ups compete in this unique show for which each comic performs a set and then has to provide biting commentary on a popular online video. The audience then votes on who was the most savagely funny and has won the right to return the following month. It all happens at The Creek’s upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue) hosted by Mike Feeney: On the Offensive

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10): Improv group Airwolf—with big talents Molly Lloyd, Tim Martin, Achilles Stamatelaky, Eddie Dunn, Ben Rameaka, and Adam Fruccie—make up scenes about terrible audience experiences related to a home at UCB East: Airwolf: Let’s Go Back to Your Place

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): An improvised apocalypse from superb comics Anthony Atamanuik, John Murray, Sean Casey, Jackie Jennings, Joanna Bradley, Chad Carter, and Joel Weidel at the UCB Chelsea theatre: Goat

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): A freestyle rapping long-form improv group that includes such talents as Evan Kaufman (Your Love Our Musical) takes the stage for nearly an hour at The PIT downstairs lounge: North Coast

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

9:00 pm ($10—CANCELED DUE TO BLIZZARD FOR TONIGHT ONLY, WILL BE BACK NEXT WEEK): NYC stand-ups performing for this weekly show at Brooklyn’s The Experiment Comedy Gallery (20 Broadway) hosted by Camille Harris, Camille Theobald, and Mo Fathelb: The Weekend Drop

9:30 pm ($10): Game-based sketch and improv at The PIT upstairs theatre from group Gentlemen Party

9:30 pm ($10): Comics dissect current events at Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue) hosted by Tracey Carnazzo: Hashtag Comedy

[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), and Nate Dern (News Editor for Funny or Die)—springboard scenes off interviewing an audience member about his or her love life at the UCB East theatre: What I Did For Love

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: Henry Zebrowski, Ben Kissel, and Marcus Parks of Cave Comedy Radio’s Last Podcast On The Left  “explore the dark recesses of humanity, both real and imagined, via short films, clips from favorite features, and audio spookiness” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Last Podcast on the Left Live

[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): Long form improv about the behavior of a theatrical troupe both on-stage and off-stage, revolving around a different show biz theme each week—which tonight is Motivational Seminar—at The Magnet theatre: The Cast: Motivational Seminar Edition

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($5): A unique musical improv show in which scenes explode into popular songs with tunes you know but entirely made up lyrics. Instead of an improv pianist, this show uses a DJ spinning karaoke tracks at Brooklyn’s The Annoyance Theatre (367 Bedford Avenue; take J/M/Z to Marcy Avenue or L to Lorimer Street) directed by Philip Markle (Executive Director of The Annoyance Theatre): Happy Karaoke Fun Time!

10:30 pm ($5): This inexpensive variety show features improv by group Kibbles and Bits (Mehdi Barakchian, Michael Delisle, and Ronny Pascale), improv duo Taylor Ortega & Sarah Morgan Ashey, character sketch by Michael Delisle, stand-up by Andrew Tavin, and a magic act by David Frasure, all performing at The PIT upstairs theatre: The Really, Really Cheap Date Show

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

[TOP PICK] 11:30 pm ($5): Comics share true-life longish funny tales at this UCB East mashup of stand-up and storytelling hosted by Alison Leiby: It’s a Long Story

11:30 pm ($5): NYC comics performing stand-up or sketch at The PIT downstairs lounge produced by Tovah Silbermann and hosted by Griffin Newman & Andrew Tavin: The Awooga Comedy Hour

[FREE] Midnight: “Mother Oslo (a.k.a. Oslo The Gay Black Metal Southerner) will host and read scriptures from the most unholy book of all eternity. The Black Metal Bible. Come for the damnation, stay for the sacrifice” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue): Black Metal Chvrch

Midnight ($5): Two sketch groups compete for audience laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea hosted by Alden Ford & Justin Tyler: Backyard Brawl

Saturday Open Mics and Jams

[FREE] 4:00 pm: An unusually early weekly open mic stand-up show, with names drawn out of a bucket, at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ LIC (10-93 Jackson Avenue) hosted by Rachel Coleman: Let’s Be Friends

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): Your opportunity to improvise on The PIT upstairs theatre stage: Snow Jam

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

The Stand

A Gentleman's Guide to Love & Murder

Kinky Boots

The Imbible: A Spirited History of Drinking

Trapped in a Room with a Zombie

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

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


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 8/4/13

August 4, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Eric Andre

A comedy force of nature celebrates 10 years of stand-up with what’s likely to be a hilarious solo show: Eric Andre at The Knitting Factory

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] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 3:00 pm & 5:30 pm ($35 using code CQUBTX online or at the box office): TV & Broadway stand-up star Colin Quinn performs a show that looks at US history “from the Founding Fathers to the Kardashians” at the Cherry Lane Theatre (38 Commerce Street, just a few blocks from the #1 subway’s Christopher Street stop) running through August 8th: Colin Quinn: Unconstitutional

[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)

[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

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm ($7 online with code GODFREY; no min.): 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), Adrienne Iapalucci (Last Comic Standing, VH1), Derek Gaines, and more performing stand-up for a comedy taping at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Christian Finnegan, Adrienne Iapalucci, and More

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Tim Gage (Comedy Central) tries out new material every night this week at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Week At the Creek: Tim Gage

[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] 7:30 pm ($10; seats are sold out, but there’ll be a standby line if you’re okay with standing) 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—plus tonight’s 7:30 show features world-class storyteller Melanie Hamlett (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): ASSSSCAT 3000

7:30 pm ($5): “Jamie Rivera invites a great improviser to play, who invites a third, who invites a fourth, who invites one more” at The Magnet theatre: The Mullaney Chain NYC

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on most recent Last Comic Standing; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, hit comedy CDs Vegan Mind Meld and Meat Robot), Sam Morril (Comedy Central), Adam Newman (Comedy Central, MTV, College Humor, host of Big Long Sets), Jermaine Fowler (MTV’s Guy Code and Wildn Out, Comedy Central, Adult Swim’s The Eric Andre Show), Ben Kronberg (Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, ABC), Katie Hannigan, and Mike Finoia performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon): If You Build It

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Aparna Nancherla (delightfully wry stand-up; writer for FX’s Totally Biased), Sean Donnelly (MTV, FOX News; host of many shows), Myka Fox, Chip Dwyer, Casey James Salengo, and Steven DeSiena performing stand-up at Klimat Lounge (77 East 7th Street) hosted by Christy Coffey & Ashley Bez: Large Naturals

[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 Shak Standley, Subhah Agarwal, Tim Dillon, Nhan Du, and Mo Diggs performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by AJ Thompson and Koshin Egal: The Quota

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

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($7): Star comic and wild man Eric Andre (Adult Swim’s The Eric Andre Show) celebrates doing 10 years of stand-up “with a tumble through old notepads, voice memos, unfinished new material, and old jokes that never worked, as he honors his 10th year of bombing” at Brooklyn’s Knitting Factory (361 Metropolitan Avenue). Please note this solo show is taking the place of Hannibal Buress’ usual stand-up showcase for one Sunday only: Eric Andre: 10 Year Stand-Up Anniversary

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 9:00 pm ($9.75 online with code GODFREY; 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), Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on most recent Last Comic Standing; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, hit comedy CDs Vegan Mind Meld and Meat Robot), Phil Hanley (Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central), Jamarr Johnson, and Joyelle Johnson performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Mark Normand, Myq Kaplan, Phil Hanley, Michelle Buteau, and More

9:00 pm ($5): Top teachers and performers at The Magnet “gather to bring you the most grounded, organic, and simplified scenes ever…you’re going to think you paid more to see this show, or you’ll think you died and went to some hilarious way station on the road to Heaven. Students and improv lovers are strongly encouraged to attend:” Whizbang

[$] [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): 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), Andrew Schulz (MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Failosophy), and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Andy Sandford, Chris Waelti, Ashley Brooke Roberts, Matt Wayne, and Scotland Green 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 Beauty Bar

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

[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

[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; 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 Thursday 7/5/12

July 5, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For best video previews of FringeNYC 2012 shows, please click here.

Colin Quinn and Eric Andre

TV stars Colin Quinn and Eric Andre perform stand-up at Free Healthcare…

John Flynn and Jackie Clarke

…and one of John Flynn’s dearest friends, Jackie Clarke, visits from LA to celebrate his upcoming birthday at Oh, Hey Guys

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] 6:00 pm: Jackie Clarke (NPR’s This American Life, FOX, VH1, Logo, Playgirl, former member of Death by Roo Roo; co-creater/co-star with John of Showgirls: The Best Movie Ever Made Ever!) visits from LA to be 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 (memorably featured here): Oh, Hey Guys!

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Veteran musical improvisors at The PIT mix with novices on-stage at Pitch

[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

7:00 pm ($5): Two singing improv troupes make up entire musicals on the spot in this double-bill at The PIT downstairs lounge: Hot Diner and THEM

[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

8:00 pm ($5): Two singing improv troupes make up entire musicals on the spot in this double-bill atThe PIT downstairs lounge: East Side Orphan Riot and Harvey

8:00 pm-MIdnight ($7 for the entire evening): The Magnet house troupes Phooka, Hello Laser, The Boss, and Junior Varsity performing improv for two hours, followed at 10:00 pm by Alex Marino directing Events (improv that explores a single event through flashbacks, dashes, and other time-bending techniques), and then at 11:00 improv competition Inspirado (like UCBT’s Cage Match, but with a game-like challenge component), featuring last week’s winner against Hello Laser: The Magnet’s Night Out

[FREE] 8:00 pm: “A stand-up comedy showcase and baking competition—come to eat or come to compete” at The Creek’s upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Cody Hess & Jessica Gross: Cookies!

8:00 pm ($8): Sketches from young and forlorn comics at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Meredith Hackman: The Saddest Sketch Show Ever

[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): Kurt Braunohler (Comedy Central; creator & host of IFC game show Bunk; co-creator & co-star of UK TV series Penelope: Princess of Pets; co-host of Hot Tub Variety; triple 2011 ECNY Award winner), Jamie Lee (Last Comic Standing, MTV’s Ridiculousness, VH1), Michael Che (Comedy Central), Sean Donnelly (host of many shows), and Alison Leiby performing at UCB Easthosted by Adam Conover: Fresh Out

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($8): TV & Broadway star Colin Quinn, Eric Andre (hilarious wild man; creator and co-star of genius new Adult Swim series The Eric Andre ShowConan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon,HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, ABC’s Apartment 23, Comedy Central, FOX, TBS), and DC Benny (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), performing stand-up at The PIT downstairs lounge co-produced by Meg Cupernall and hosted by Ryan Conner (freelance writer for SNL, BBC): Free Healthcare

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Saturday Night Live write Mike O’Brien “performs solo sketch and stand-up, reads a short story, and in general, does things. Come out to see experimental comedy as well as comedy that involves no experimentation” at UCB ChelseaMIke O’Brien: 45 Minutes of Things

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: Sharp improvisors from UCBT, The Magnet, The PIT, and/or more try their hand at stand-up at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City: Improvisers Standing Up

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Grandma’s Ashes beat up a girl last week, besting improv troupe GoodGirl 75-16. Tonight it’s likely to burn down Out of the Woods as these two teams compete for audience laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea for the raucous Cage Match

11:00 pm ($5): “Secret movie screenings of movies you probably haven’t seen and/or should see again” at UCB East (which used to be a movie theatre) hosted by Ryan Karels (Grandma’s Ashes, Krompf), JD Amato (Harold Night), and Mike Roth (Two Boots Video): Secret Movie Show Presented by Two Boots Video

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Tuesday 7/3/12

July 3, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For my write-up of the epic 14th Del Close Marathon, please click here.

Julia Wiedeman and Eric Andre

Don’t miss what may be the last chance in a long while to see Julia Wiedeman in her memorable sketch show Naked People; and catch frenetic anarchy from the wonderful Eric Andre headlining at the Gotham Comedy Club for ComedyJuice

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] 6:30 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, a witty and ultimately exhilarating exploration of baring it all by fabulous long-time nudist Julia Wiedeman. Julia is a charismatic actress whose star is just starting to rise, and is well worth catching even beyond the enjoyment of her playful beauty. Check out promo videos here and here and here, and then run to see what may be the last performance for quite a while of Naked People

[FREE] 6:30 pm: Open mic for comedy of all types (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Chesley Calloway (co-host of renowned Comedy as a Second Language): The Ches Club

7:00 pm ($5): Improv piano wizard Frank Spitznagel working with both veteran and student musical improv performers at The Program

7:30 pm-9:15 pm ($5): Long form improv known as The Harold from UCB Chelsea house troupes GoodGirl, Johnny Romance, and Bucky at this first half (see 9:15 pm for more) of Harold Night

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): One of my favorite people, Julie Sharbutt—who’s performed with some of the greatest improvisors alive at UCBT’s Gravid Water—goes for improv gold herself with comedy partner Cathleen Carr (Birds, The Scene, Dos Experimentos) as they “hope to establish themselves as the leading voices in contemporary South Boston crime noir improv comedy. Watch them, along with special guests Bob Kulhan and Joe Schiappa, unspool a suspenseful, heavily-accented mystery thrilla” at The PIT downstairs lounge: Mystic Improv

8:00 pm ($8): Newest PIT house sketch troupe National Scandal performs at The PIT downstairs lounge: National Scandal

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

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

9:00 pm (no cover, one drink min.): Erin Judge (Comedy Central; new album So Many Choices), Josh Gondelman, Katie East, Brendan McLaughlin, and “special guests” performing stand-up for this weekly show at Sidewalk NYC (94 Avenue A) with tonight’s host Erin Judge: The Afterlife: Independence

9:15 pm-Midnight ($5): Long form improv known as The Harold from UCB Chelsea house troupes Creature, The Regulars, and Sandino—plus four separate three-person groups of advanced students each perform one long scene in a form called The Three-Hander—at this second half (continued from 7:30 pm) of Harold Night

9:30 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Chris Grace: Cold Soda Comedy

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Stand-up, sketch, videos, and more at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre with Jeffrey Joseph and hosts Ron Krasnow & Joel Walkowski: The Short Bus

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($15 & 2-drink min.): Eric Andre (hilarious wild man; creator and co-star of genius new Adult Swim series The Eric Andre Show; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, ABC’s Apartment 23, Comedy Central, FOX, TBS), John Roy (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Comedy Central), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, HBO, Showtime, MTV), Bryan Callen (The Hangover, The Hangover 2, Warrior, Comedy Central, Mad TV, Entourage), and more performing at the Gotham Comedy Club hosted by Jared Freid: ComedyJuice

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

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

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Tuesday 6/12/12

June 12, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.
For excerpts from Dave Hill’s new bestselling book, please click here.

Eric Andre

Eric Andre, star of Adult Swim’s wonderful The Eric Andre Show, is briefly back in NYC…

Eric Andre

…and performing tonight at Sweet and Comedy Juice

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

[FREE] 6:30 pm: Open mic for comedy of all types (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Chesley Calloway (co-host of renowned Comedy as a Second Language): The Ches Club

7:00 pm ($5): A two-person sketch show about dating and choices at The PIT downstairs lounge that I haven’t seen but sounds sweet & fun: The New York Smiths—Speed Dating

7:00 pm ($5): Twin brothers Buck & Clint Vrazel perform improv, sketch and musical comedy at The Magnet as duo TwinProv

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:30 pm: Ben McCool (comic book writer for PIGS, Choker) joining 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: Comic Book Club

7:30 pm-9:15 pm ($5): Long form improv known as The Harold from UCB Chelsea house troupes GoodGirl, The Regulars, and The Pox at this first half (see 9:15 pm for more) of Harold Night

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($15 at the door or $18.88 online): W. Kamau Bell (host of new FX late-night summer series Totally Biased, exec produced by Chris Rock; co-host of The Field Negro Guide to Arts & Culture podcast with Living Colour guitarist Vernon Reid), James Adomian (hilarious, super-charged character comic/impressionist; finalist on most recent Last Comic Standing; Harold and Kumar 2), Baratunde Thurston (author of How to Be Black; The Onion, Discovery Science), Hari Kondabolu (Comedy Central Presents, Jimmy Kimmel), and Janine Brito (just moved here from San Francisco; 2011 “Best Comedian with a Message” via East Bay Express) performing at Lolita Bar hosted by Liam McEneaney: Tell Your Friends

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5 at the door or $7.63 online): Leo Allen (former writer for Saturday Night Live; Comedy Central Presents, Conan O’Brien, HBO’s Funny or Die, director/co-writer of Comedy Central’s Jon Benjamin Has a Van, host of top NYC comedy show Whiplash), Phil Hanley (Craig Ferguson), Adam Pateman (NPR), and Josh Gondelman performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Union Hall for this show hosted by Calvin Cole and Sharron Paul that calls attention to its inexpensive price: Cheap Date

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): A musical show at UCB East describing itself as “Female-fronted folky-pop band. Hyper-articulate, nerdy, post-modern sort of musical comedy. Folk singalongs and catchy pop jams are merely the metaphorical table holding up the buffet of wordplay, sarcastic wit, and rapid-fire pop culture references:” Summer & Eve: Folky-Pop Musical Comedy

8:00 pm ($5): Cathleen Carr (Two Girls for Five Bucks, Birds, The Scene) and Bob Kulhan (Second City, The Scene) host a show featuring two-person improv teams challenged with separation anxiety—the audience is asked to scramble them and create one-night-only pairings.The established duos participating tonight are Brigid Boyle & Alexis Saarela, Lucas Kavner & Bradford Jordan (Swords), and Cathleen Carr & Bob Kulhan at The PIT downstairs Lounge: Carr Kulhan: Dos Experimento

8:00 pm ($8): Newest PIT house sketch troupe National Scandal performs at The PIT downstairs lounge: National Scandal

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

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

9:00 pm (no cover, one drink min.): Louis Katz (HBO, Comedy Central), Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, Comedy Central’s Indecision 2012), Dan Soder (Comedy Central, VH1; for set about being a hypochondriatic drug user, please click here), Jake Weisman (The Morning After podcast), and George Gordon performing on the topic Enlightenment for this weekly show at Sidewalk NYC (94 Avenue A) hosted tonight by Emily Heller: The Afterlife

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): Eric Andre (hilarious wild man; creator and co-star of genius new Adult Swim series The Eric Andre Show; HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, ABC’s Apartment 23, Comedy Central, FOX, TBS), Neal Brennan (razor-sharp stand-up veteran; HBO, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, co-creator of Chappelle’s Show), Streeter Seidell (Editor-in-Chief of College Humor; Jimmy Kimmel, MTV), Kevin Barnett (Comedy Central, MTV, College Humor), and more performing at Ella (9 Avenue A) hosted by Seth Herzog (Jimmy Fallon, 30 Rock, VH1): Sweet

9:15 pm-Midnight ($5): Long form improv known as The Harold from UCB Chelsea house troupes Johnny Romance, Creature, and Sandino—plus four separate three-person groups of advanced students each perform one long scene in a form called The Three-Hander—at this second half (continued from 7:30 pm) of Harold Night

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Kurt Braunohler (Comedy Central; creator & host of IFC game show Bunk; co-creator & co-star of UK TV series Penelope: Princess of Pets; co-host of Hot Tub Variety; triple 2011 ECNY Award winner), Dan McCoy (staff writer for The Daily Show), and musical guest Moon Hooch (2 saxophones + drums) are interviewed about “their earliest creative experiences and the nuances of having a creative career” for a weekly podcast that once a month goes live on the UCB East stage with hosts Andy Beckerman & Mark Bisi: Beginnings

9:30 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing stand-up at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Chris Grace: Cold Soda Comedy

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

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($15 & 2-drink min.): Eric Andre (hilarious wild man; creator and co-star of genius new Adult Swim series The Eric Andre Show; HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, ABC’s Apartment 23, Comedy Central, FOX, TBS), Neal Brennan (razor-sharp stand-up veteran; HBO, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, co-creator of Chappelle’s Show), James Adomian (hilarious, super-charged character comic/impressionist; finalist on most recent Last Comic Standing; Harold and Kumar 2), John Mooney (Reverend Gary on 30 Rock), Bryan Callen (The Hangover 1 and 2, Comedy Central, Chelsea Lately, HBO’s Entourage), and more performing stand-up at the Gotham Comedy Club hosted by Jared Logan (rising star; Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central): ComedyJuice

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

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): TV & movie star Kristen Schaal practices for her upcoming one-hour taped special (in San Francisco) at UCB East. This has already sold out, but you might be able to get in if you’re okay with standing: Kristen Schaal: Going Blue

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

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Tuesday 7/26/11

July 26, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

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

Adam Wade and Jon Friedman

Two of the most beloved nice guys in comedy, Adam Wade and Jon Friedman, perform one-man shows in "Cool as Nice"...

Sean Patton and Eric Andre

...and two of the most beloved wild men in comedy, Sean Patton and Eric Andre, perform tonight at "Righteous Kill"

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

7:00 pm ($5): Duo improv from team Snazzle Dazzle ; and improv revolving around “the anticipation, the fall-out, that fragile moment when love blooms or dies” in Double Date

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

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Two one-man shows from top comedic storytellers beloved for their sweet, vulnerable styles: Adam Wade (two-time Moth GrandSlam Storytelling Champion (2006 & 2009) and record-breaking 17-time StorySlam Champion; The New York Times Magazine; host of hilarious monthly storytelling extravaganzas Real Tales of College and The Adam Wade show; for Adam’s award-winning tale of being an NBC page on Conan O’Brien, please click here) and Jon Friedman (Jimmy Fallon, The Rejection Show) performing at Brooklyn’s Union HallCool at Nice

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Amazing Spider-Man writer Dan Slott, and Marvel Assistant Editors Ellie Pyle and Rachel Pinnelas, talk about Dan’s new story arc Spider Island with super-hosts Alex Zalben, Justin Tyler, and Pete LePage, as well as conduct a lively & hilarious discussion aboutfour-color pop culture, at The PIT’s downstairs lounge: Comic Book Club

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Jennifer Dziura, who hosts Brooklyn’s Spelling Bee and writes women’s blog TheGrindstone.com, debuts a one-woman show about women through the ages, from Eve to Oprah: The History of Women in 60 Minutes

8:00 pm to Midnight ($5): Four full hours of improv for only five bucks—tonight featuring UCBT house troupes Airwolf, Mr. Crime, Grandma’s Ashes, Sandino, American Cousinl, and at 11:00 pm advanced UCBT students acting weird—all at Harold Night

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

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): Andy Blitz (comedy genius best known for being an Emmy-nominated and long-time writer/performer for Late Night with Conan O’Brien; has also written for Comedy Central’s Important Things, MTV’s Human Giant, etc.; a thoroughly unique stand-up whose sets—ranging from talking peanut butter to jet-flying cats—tend to be unforgettable), Christian Finnegan (co-star of TBS’ Are We There Yet?; three Comedy Central specials; MSNBC, VH1’s Best Week Ever, Chappelle’s Show, The Today Show), Jane Borden (treasured Comedy Editor of Time Out New York, author of I Totally Meant to Do That), James Adomian (talented impressionist; finalist on last summer’s Last Comic Standing), and more performing at Ella (9 Avenue A) hosted by Seth Herzog (Jimmy Fallon, VH1): Sweet

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Sean Patton (red-hot rising star; killer set on Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central, VH1; co-host of Comedy as a Second Language, frequent guest-host of Whiplash), Eric Andre (hilarious wild man; HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, ABC’s Apartment 23, TBS’ Lopez Report, Comedy Central, FOX’s In the Flow), and Maysoon Zayid (self-described “Palestinian Muslim virgin with cerebral palsy, from New Jersey;” cast member for two seasons of As the World Turns; pundit for Keith Olbermann) performing at the PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Joe DeRosa (HBO’s Down and DirtyComedy Central Presents) and Jared Logan (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central): Righteous Kill

9:30 pm ($8): Two one-woman shows from Peter Michael Marino’s Flying Solo class: “Becky Flaum thinks she’s Julia Roberts. And Sandra Bullock, Meg Ryan, Drew Barrymore, even Katherine Heigel. But she isn’t. Her high cinematic hopes for her love life start to get in the way of reality on her quest for the perfect co-star” in Hopeless Romantic Comedy; and “What is success and what is failure? A tale of a girl growing up, figuring out what is important to her and learning that she can have her cake and eat it too!” in One Fat Step at a Time

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

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

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

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