NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 8/26/12

August 26, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For FringeNYC 2012 shows rated & reviewed, please click here.

Ashley Wren Collins

On this final day of FringeNYC 2012, Ashley Wren Collins shows off her comedic powers, and more, in polished and consistently fun musical comedy “Mother Eve’s Secret Garden of Sensual Sisterhood”…

Hanafuda Denki: A Tale of Playing Cards

…and it’s your last chance to be a winner by catching FringeNYC’s amazing Japanese dark fantasy comedy before it moves on to Canada for its world tour: “Hanafuda Denki—A Tale of Playing Cards”

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] 1:30 pm ($10): One of the most acclaimed improv duos in the country discuss the art and craft of what they do at The PIT upstairs theatre: A Conversation About Improv with TJ & Dave

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] 2:00 pm; but you should ideally arrive by 1:45 pm for the pre-show ($18): A spectacular dark fantasy comedy that’s my second favorite show at FringeNYC 2012 (out of the 55 I’ve caught so far): colorful, dream-like, overwhelming, and like nothing else you’re likely to see anywhere. It’s from an all-Japanese troupe (with easy-to-read English subtitles projected on the wall); and kudos to FringeNYC for bringing this amazing show to New York. Don’t miss your last chance to see it (before this production’s world tour moves on to Canada), today at 2:00 pm at the HERE Theatre Mainstage (145 Sixth Avenue; take the C/E subway to Spring Street): Hanafuda Denki: A Tale of Playing Cards—Are You a Winner or a Loser in This Life-and-Death Game?

[TOP PICK] [$] 2:00 pm ($18): An award-winning musical that’s one of the most polished comedies at this year’s FringeNYC, and which showcases quadruple-threat talent and star Ashley Wren Collins and a terrific mostly-gal cast, running today at 2:00 pm at The Players Theatre (115 MacDougal Street, between West 3rd Street and Bleecker): Mother Eve’s Secret Garden of Sensual Sisterhood

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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: “Are ready for something sweet and something spicy? Long form improv that will satisfy your hunger” hosted by sharp UCBT comic Andy Rocco at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: The Candy Taco Improv Hour

6:30 pm ($5): A one-woman show at The Magnet about how “Molly Marjorie Rosenblatt is in New York and her musical theater career isn’t taking off. She doesn’t have a job, but thinks finding a boyfriend will make life easier. Learn how she comes into her own as a broke and unemployed hot mess living in Queens through Facebook stalking, online dating, and adventures in Brooklyn. Told primarily through original songs (music and lyrics by Mallory Schlossberg, arrangements by Joel Esher), and directed by Jen Sanders: Molly Marjorie Rosenblatt Needs A Man

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

7:30 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 & R an Karels (Krompf): Indie Cage Match

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

8:00 pm ($8): Improvised episodes of the never-made third season of Twin Peaks at The PIT’s upstairs theatre: In These Woods

8:00 pm ($5): Short-form improv at The PIT downstairs lounge: The Sunday ShortForm Show

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Kevin Avery, Jono Zalay, Anna Drezen, J. F. Harris, and Brendan McLaughlin performing at RG’s free weekly show at the Three of Cups lounge (83 First Avenue at 5th Street): Sunday Night Stand-Up

8:00 pm ($10): At The Magnet, stand-up from Jon Bander & Jarret Berenstein, and improv from Kevin McDonald, Peter McNerney, Louis Kornfeld, Elana Fishbein, Kevin Cragg, Alan Fessenden & Rick Andrews: The Kevin McDonald Show

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Mark Normand (hilarious stand-up; Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Tom Steffen, Missy Baker, and Nimesh Patel performing in the East Village’s Beauty Bar for this free weekly show hosted by Adam Sokol, Brad Austin, and/or Nate Fridson: Comedy at the Beauty Bar

9:00 pm ($5): Improv veterans Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, and Phillip Jackson hosting & performing in a show at UCB East with guest improvisors: Improv Nerds

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

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, MTV, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Dive comedy and Stripped Stories), Mara Herron (Web series That Chick Mara Herron), and Hadiyah Robinson performing stand-up at this free weekly gay-themed show at Therapy hosted by Brad Loekle: Electro Shock Therapy Comedy Hour

10:00 pm ($5): 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

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Saturday 8/25/12

August 25, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For FringeNYC 2012 shows rated & reviewed, please click here.

Hanafuda Denki: A Tale of Playing Cards

There are only two more chances to enjoy the spectacular dark fantasy comedy…

Hanafuda Denki: A Tale of Playing Cards

…that’s my second favorite show of FringeNYC 2012 (out of 51 seen to date)…

Hanafuda Denki: A Tale of Playing Cards

…playing only today at noon and Sunday at 2:00 pm…

Hanafuda Denki: A Tale of Playing Cards

….”Hanafuda Denki—A Tale of Playing Cards—Are You a Winner or a Loser in This Life-and-Death Game?”

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] [$] Noon ($18): A spectacular dark fantasy comedy that’s my second favorite show at FringeNYC 2012 (out of the 51 I’ve caught so far): colorful, dream-like, overwhelming, and like nothing else you’re likely to see anywhere. It’s from an all-Japanese troupe (with easy-to-read English subtitles projected on the wall); and kudos to FringeNYC for bringing this amazing show to New York. Don’t miss your two remaining chances to see it, today at noon and Sunday at 2:00 pm, at the HERE Theatre Mainstage (145 Sixth Avenue; take the C/E subway to Spring Street): Hanafuda Denki: A Tale of Playing Cards—Are You a Winner or a Loser in This Life-and-Death Game?

[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

6:00 pm ($5): Improv troupes Petting Zoo, The Bartender, and Orange Augustus and more at The Magnet kicking off your Saturday evening: The Rundown

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: A gala celebration of a 10 Year Anniversary for The Creek in Queens’ Long Island City, featuring Colin Quinn, Sean Patton, James Adomian, Mark Normand, and more: The Creek and the Cave Turns 10!

[TOP PICK] 7:00 ($5): Dan St. Germain (quick-witted & enormously likeable rising star; Jimmy Fallon, The Electric Company, MTV, VH1), Kevin Bartini (writer for HBO, The Daily Show, MPR podcast), Reid Faylor (host of hilarious monthly Creek show Underbelly), and Cody Hess performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Adam Lash (The Daily Show, HBO, Showtime) and in some way connected to Reddit.com: /r/standup

7:30 pm ($10): Charlie Todd, Jim Santangeli, D’Arcy Carden, Chelsea Clarke, and/or other stellar improvisors 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 ($7): Female sketch writers & performers at The Magnet present Lady Sketch Show

[$] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($32.75 & 2-drink min.): The Emmy Award-winning host of Cash Cab and NBC’s Who’s Still Standing?, and a stand-up who’s performed a Comedy Central Presents special, headlining tonight and Saturday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Ben Bailey

8:00 pm ($10): Two of the most respected PIT improv troupes performing on this weekly double-bill—and occasionally with comedy giants Kristen Schaal and/or Kurt Braunohler participating—at the upstairs theatre: Big Black Car and The Baldwins

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10): Rob Cantrell (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, VHI, documentary Metaphysical Graffiti, High Times) and other sharp stand-ups performing at UCB East hosted by Kara Klenk: If You Build It

[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

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 9:00 pm & 11:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 260-2445 and mention HyReviews.com, but there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): TV & movie star Janeane Garofalo (9:00 pm only), Mike Britt (Comedy Central), and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

9:00 pm ($7): Magnet improvisors team up with poets at Kiss*Punch*Poem

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 ($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

[TOP PICK] 10:30 ($8): NYC’s heavy metal version of a sketch troupe, which doesn’t always ht the mark but provides odd, unsettling, and fearless dark comedy—and won last year’s ECNY Award for Best Sketch Group, tonight joined by guest sketch duo Rue Brutalia: Murderfist: Late and Dirty

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): 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” at this newest UCB Chelsea show to be honored with a weekend time slot: Grandma’s Ashes Gets Dark

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

10:30 pm ($7): Nick Kanellis & Peter McNerney perform at The Magnet as comedy duo Trike

[FREE] Midnight: A weekly chance for you to shine at The Magnet, as students and veteran improvisors share the stage to form “rare and wonderful one-night-only teams,” with sign-up starting at 11:30 pm: Magnet Mixer

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Friday 8/24/12

August 24, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For FringeNYC 2012 shows rated & reviewed, please click here.

Hanafuda Denki: A Tale of Playing Cards

Don’t miss the spectacular dark fantasy comedy…

Hanafuda Denki: A Tale of Playing Cards

…from an all-Japanese troupe (with English subtitles), running
7:00 pm tonight…

Hanafuda Denki: A Tale of Playing Cards

…Saturday at noon, and Sunday at 2:00 at FringeNYC 2012: Hanafuda Denki—A Tale of Playing Cards

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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic show on a lottery system (sign-ups happen at 5:45-6:00 pm) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with hosts Erin Lennox and Eli Sairs: The Orphanage

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm ($18): A spectacular dark fantasy comedy that’s a bit like anime on stage; colorful, dream-like, overwhelming, and like nothing else you’re likely to see this year. It’s from an all-Japanese troupe (with easy-to-read English subtitles projected on the wall); and kudos to FringeNYC for bringing this amazing show to New York. Don’t miss your three remaining chances to see it tonight at 7:00, tomorrow at noon, and Sunday at 2:00 at the HERE Theatre Mainstage (145 Sixth Avenue; take the C/E subway to Spring Street): Hanafuda Denki: A Tale of Playing Cards—Are You a Winner or a Loser in This Life-and-Death Game?

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: For one last night this week, a TV & Broadway stand-up star hones an hour of material at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Colin Quinn

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): A critically acclaimed show described as “Two Men. One Chain. Fully Improvised,” with Dion Flynn (Jimmy Fallon, Matador) & Nate Starkey (Big Black Car, Starkey & Grace) performing at The PIT upstairs theatre: Shackled

7:00 pm ($7): Improv at The Magnet that flows from moment to moment, with no sweeps or tag outs—”each exit starts a new scene, while performers use devices ranging from monologues to in-scene questions to break into characters and relationships quicker and deeper:” Scoresby; plus in the second half of this double-bill, improv troupe LD50

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): Stone Cold Fox is the only sketch troupe (vs. improv troupe) to ever be honored with an ongoing spot on the prestigious UCB Chelsea weekend schedule. It’s earned this slot because its cast is one of the finest in comedy, with each performer strong enough for potential stardom. As for its writers, they sizzle when at their best; but when I saw this new show about two months ago, it was a work in progress. Regardless of the current state of the script, you’re virtually guaranteed a good time from the all-star cast—Fran Gillespie, John Murray, Brandon Scott Jones, Molly Lloyd, D’Arcy Carden, and Johnathan Fernandez. (The scary faces Molly Lloyd makes are worth the trip all by themselves…) Directed by ace improvisor Ryan Karels: Stone Cold Fox: You Probably Think This Show Is About You

[TOP PICK] 7:30 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), and more perform improv at UCB East springboarding scenes off interviewing an audience member about his or her love life: What I Did For Love

8:00 pm ($5): All-gal Improvisors who’ve previously created viral sketch videos performing at The PIT downstairs lounge: Candy Slice Comedy

[$] 8:00 pm ($15): Twelve improvisors at The PIT upstairs theatre will improvise for 24 hours straight, from 8:00 pm tonight until 8:00 pm tomorrow night. For $15, you can come and watch for the entire 24 hours or any portion of it. The performers for this event are Darcy Burke, Nick Carrillo, Kevin Cragg, Patrick Cucuta, David Chase Kimball-Stanley, Michael Greene, Toby Knops, Adam Luke, Oscar Montoya, Chris Roberti, Rebecca Vigil, and Marshall York: 24 Hour Improv Challenge

[$] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($32.75 & 2-drink min.): The Emmy Award-winning host of Cash Cab and NBC’s Who’s Still Standing?, and a stand-up who’s performed a Comedy Central Presents special, headlining tonight and Saturday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Ben Bailey

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Stand-up, pastry buns, and jello shots at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Jonathan Powley: Buns and Puns

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

8:30 pm ($7): Jarret Berenstein performs a one-man show at The Magnet that “mixes stand-up, sketch, and poorly executed animation:” Boosh. Kla-Klau.

[FREE] 8:30 pm: NYC stand-ups Adrienne Iapalucci (Last Comic Standing), Jena Axelrod, Sergio Chicon, Joe Pontillo, and Pat Rigby performing at Mr. Dennehy’s Irish Pub (63 Carmine Street) hosted by Troy Bynum & Carrie Gravenson: The Tomfoolery Hour

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): Some of the finest improv in NYC from comedy geniuses Chris Gethard and Shannon O’Neill, plus stellar comics Silvija Ozols, Zach Woods, Michael Delaney, Will Hines, and Connor Ratliff, performing at UCB Chelsea—the all-star members of The Stepfathers

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): Sharp improvisors at UCB East—Michael Kayne, Amber Petty, Ashley Ward, Morgan Phillips, and Winston Noel—making up a musical on the spot: Diamond Lion

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 9:00 pm & 11:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 260-2445 and mention HyReviews.com, but there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): Mike Britt (Comedy Central), Dan Soder (Comedy Central, VH1; for set about being a hypochondriatic drug user, please click here), Aaron Berg, and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

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

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Long-form improv from troupe CSO at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Casual Sex Offenders

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 10:00 pm ($15 [vs. $25] online or at the box office using discount code BBOX): Telly Savalas returns to life to entertain you and provide life guidance in this 50-minute show that was a hit at FringeNYC 2011 and is now enjoying an open-ended Friday night run at the Soho Playhouse’s downstairs Huron Club. The script is at times very smart, especially in its choices of hilarious video clips and music tracks from the real Savalas…who, in his more intense moments, apparently rivaled William Shatner at his silliest. But even when Hunter Nelson’s writing isn’t consistent, actor Tom DiMenna—who is a professional comic with great timing and skill at engaging an audience—will keep you entertained: Who Loves You, Baby?

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

[TOP PICK] 11:30 pm ($5): Before this Magnet show, audience members may anonymously submit written confessions, secrets, rants, advice and opinions which will be used onstage by the improvisors—who include such talents as Laura Grey (stellar old-time radio style theatrical podcast Horrorgasm, top Maude sketch troupe Gramp’s, sketch/improv duo Klepper & Grey): The Friday Night Sh*w

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

Midnight ($5): A three-person improv competition at UCB East hosted by Brian Glidewell, Josh Patten, and Ben Rameaka: Three for All

[FREE] Midnight ($5): Amber Nelson (fearless rising star; sketch troupe Thunder Gulch, co-host of Late Night Stand and Mustache Party), Tim Diamond, Marilyn Summers, Pepper Jill & Jack, and more performing at a variety show embracing all forms of comedy at The PIT downstairs theatre hosted by Taylor Clark: FGP Late Nite

[FREE] Midnight: This show might not be much fun for audience members, but it’s an amazing opportunity if you want to perform sketch for free and with almost zero hurdles on the prestigious UCB Chelsea stage. Plus it’s hosted by members of Maude troupe Fambly, typically including such wonderful talents as Nicole Byer and Veronica Osorio: Liquid Courage

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.