NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 1/22/14

January 22, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Broad City

Don’t let the snow keep you from experiencing live comedy tonight—highlights include Tom Papa’s Radio Show and Carolyn Castiglia’s Rifftown—but set your DVR to the premiere of Ilana Glazer’s & Abbi Jacobson’s TV series airing 10:30 pm and 2:30 am on Comedy Central, or click the photo above right now to watch Broad City

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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents) tries out stand-up material every night through Friday at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Week at the Creek: Sheng Wang

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

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

[$] 7:00 pm ($15): A monthly burlesque variety show “with a musical theater twist,” tonight featuring Cherry Pitz (ace storyteller Cyndi Freeman, who’s also a bona fide burlesque performer), Carla Rhodes (“rock’n’roll ventriloquist;” for shout-out from David Letterman, please click here; for act with “Keith Richards,” please click here), and more performing at The Slipper Room (167 Orchard Street) hosted by Teddy Turnaround & Matt Knife: Tainted Cabaret

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

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($10, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tom Papa’s live taping for his Come to Papa show on SIrius XM Radio, tonight featuring Jim Norton, Dave Hill, Gary Gulman, Bridgette Everett, and Jermaine Fowler performing and/or being interviewed at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Tom Papa’s Live Radio Show, with Jim Norton, Dave Hill, Gary Gulman, and More

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: The debut of this monthly show in which “stand-ups throw their set lists out the window for a night of wild riffing. Comics premiere a story that they’ve never told anyone, improvise a stand-up set based on an audience suggestion, or rant off the cuff. Also expect freestyling and musical improv in an anything goes atmosphere that makes for a one-of-a-kind experience.” Tonight’s superb comics are Mark Normand, Rob Cantrell, Michelle Buteau, Selena Coppock, Jeffrey Joseph, Jacqueline Novak, and Frank Liotti performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Carolyn Castiglia: Rifftown

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): A rare opportunity to experience acclaimed Canadian sketch duo Gwynne Phillips & Briana Templeton, whose “surreal brand of humor often features hideous Edwardian dresses, stinging social commentary, and dead-pan interpretive dance” performing for one night only at the UCB Chelsea theatre: The Templeton Philharmonic

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($10 online using discount code MASHUP; no min.): TV & movie star Janeane Garofalo, Todd Barry (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, FX’s Louie, HBO’s Flight of the Conchords and Bored to Death, Adult Swim, feature films The Wrestler and Pete Smalls is Dead), 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 Soder (Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1; for set about being a hypochondriatic drug user, please click here), and Louis Katz (Jimmy Fallon, HBO, Comedy Central Presents) performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street) hosted by Adrienne Iapalucci (David Letterman) & Luis J. Gomez: Janeane Garofalo, Todd Barry, Mike Lawrence, Dan Soder, and More

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm, 9:45 pm, and 11:30 pm ($10-$14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Todd Barry and Lynn Koplitz at the 8:00 show; Gary Gulman, Nick Griffin, Gregg Rogell, Greer Barnes and James Smith at the 9:45 show; and Mark Normand, Keith Alberstadt, and Dan Soder at the 11:30 show, with Mike Yard hosting all three shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Wednesday

[FREE] 8:00 pm: DC Benny (Comedy Central), Kevin Avery (Totally Biased), Claudia Cogan (Last Comic Standing), and Davon Magwood (Huffington Post) performing stand-up, plus music from Skrd and Corduroy, all performing at Brooklyn’s Legion Bar (790 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by comic Liz Miele and singer/songwriter Emily Miele: The Miele Sisters Variety Show

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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Seth Herzog (staff comic for Jimmy Fallon; co-host of Nat Geo’s Duck Quakes Don’t Echo; 30 Rock, Comedy Central, CBS, VH1; host of Sweet), Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents), Adam Lowitt (Co-Executive Producer of The Daily Show), Mike Dobbins (unique stream-of-consciousness stand-up), Mike Vecchione (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Howard Stern), Perry Strong (VH1), and Corinne Fisher (Sorry About Last Night) performing stand-up at this free weekly show at Lucky Jack’s Pub (129 Orchard Street) produced by Kyle Fincham, Lance Weiss, and Brendon Fitzgibbons: Gandhi, Is That You?

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

[TOP PICK] 9:30 ($5): Renowned comedy chameleon and sketch comic Livia Scott (Conan O’Brien, Law & Order, VH1, feature film National Lampoon’s Dirty Movie) spearheads this multimedia sketch comedy show written and starring Livia and friends at the UCB Chelsea theatre: The Livia Scott Sketch Program

9:30 pm ($5): Sketch comedy group Awful DJ (Bill Grandberg, Cory Cavin, and Josh Lay) hosts this variety show at The PIT downstairs lounge: Awful DJ

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): Improv group Bucky makes up one long scene in the same location (a winning form that’s helped such teams as Death by Roo Roo win a whole lot of Cage Match victories) at the UCB East theatre: Bucky: Here and Now

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Charla Lauriston (MTV; host of Free Cable) hosts as many as a dozen guests packed into 75 minutes performing stand-up, improv, sketch, and occasionally acts that defy categorization. The level of talent can vary wildly, but for some, like me, that’s part of the laid-back fun. Tonight’s superb lineup includes The Vigilante, Jena Friedman, Brandon Scott Jones, Gibran Saleem, and Negin Farsad; for the complete list, click here.) Come support the experimentation, and periodic magical surprises, that this uniquely organic rollercoaster of a weekly show at UCB Chelsea makes possible—and don’t forget to toss $1 in the bucket on your way out: School Night

Wednesday Open Mics & Jams

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

[FREE] 5:30 pm: A character-based open-mic happening weekly at UCB East hosted by Sean Hart: Don’t Be Yourself: Character Open Mic

[ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): Open mic for both stand-up and sketch, with sign-up starting at 5:30 and ending at 5:55, at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Brian Frange & Rob Stern: Frange & Stern’s Stand-Up and Sketch Open Mic

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

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

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

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

7:00 pm ($2, which includes a free beer or water): Open mic stand-up providing a whopping 10 minutes per comic. Email PhoningItInMic@gmail.com with subject line Phoning Wednesday to sign up; or take a chance at lottery sign-up live between 6:45 and 7:45 at Brit Pack Studios (153 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor) hosted by Lizzie Martinez: Comics Phoning It In

[ALMOST FREE] 10:30 pm ($1): Biweekly open mic stand-up, with each comic getting an unusually long 6-10 minutes, at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by James III & Jamie LeeLo: Hump Day

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Friday 1/17/14

January 17, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Talent Show

Over 20 of NYC’s comedic storytellers gather to show off their non-storytelling talents at Uncle Frank’s Ed Sullivan Show…

Broad City

…and Ilana Glazer & Abbi Jacobson are interviewed about their TV series Broad City—debuting January 22nd on Comedy Central—at Jamie LeeLo’s Brunch Night

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 ($7): Two sketch groups performing at The Magnet theatre: CA$H and The Misses

7:00 pm ($8): Writer/performers Melanie Owens & Teresa Lee, plus some friends, draw back the curtains on what really happens in a sorority in this sketch comedy show at The PIT downstairs lounge: #WaitWhat: A Sorority Chapter Meeting

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm, 8:00 pm, 8:45 pm, 10:30 pm, and 12:15 am ($20-$24 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Ben Bailey and Greer Barnes at the 7:00, 8:45, and 10:30 shows; Ali Wong, James Smith, Lenny Marcus, and Dan Soder also at the 10:30 show; and Dave Attell, Ali Wong, Nick Griffin, and Lenny Marcus at the 12:15 show, with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) except for the 8:00 pm show at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Friday

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:30 pm: A massive gathering of top NYC storytellers who’ll perform anything except storytelling. The talent show includes Ophira Eisenberg, Adam Wade, Leslie Goshko, Andy Christie, Cammi Climaco, David Crabb, Cyndi Freeman (as Cherry Pitz), Peter Aguero, Micaela Blei, Elizabeth Blue, Dana Rossi, and about a dozen more, all performing at the Housingworks Bookstore Cafe (126 Crosby Street) hosted by Frank Gauthier: Uncle Frank’s Ed Sullivan Show

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): Stone Cold Fox is the only sketch group (vs. improv group) to ever be honored with an ongoing spot on the prestigious UCB Chelsea weekend schedule. It’s earned this slot because its writers (who include stellar comics Brandon Gulya and Silvija Ozols) are terrific, and its cast is superb: Brandon Scott Jones, Molly Lloyd, John Murray, Leslie Meisel, Connor Ratliff, and Johnathan Fernandez. (If you’re in the industry, hire them.) Enjoy this new collection of sketches from these sexy performers (which I hope to see soon): Stone Cold Fox: Sexy Idiots

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5): Storyteller/comics Dave Hill, Jena Friedman, Eliza Hurwitz, and more share true tales for this confessional storytelling show at UCB East hosted by the extraordinary Ruby Karp: HelloGiggles

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:30ish pm: Mike Lawrence (nerd persona but razor-sharp mind has made this stand-up a rapidly rising star; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up, comedy album Sadamantium), Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents), Frank Conniff (TV’s Frank on Mystery Science Theater 3000; Cinematic Titanic), Kevin Froleiks, and Bob Palos performing stand-up at the One and One Bar (76 1st Street, corner of First Avenue) hosted by Ben Conrad & Lucas Connolly: Cranky Pants Comedy Hour

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($15): Tony Award-winning playwright/lyricist Greg Kotis (Urinetown) has written “a collection of seven short plays that explore love, sex, truth, sex, money, sex and justice. In that order” featuring wonderful comedic actors Julie Sharbutt, Micah Sherman, Dan Hodapp, Keisha Zollar, and Chris Robert at The PIT upstairs theatre: Give the People What They Want

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: The debut of a comedic game show that pits stand-up comics against each other—tonight featuring Amber Nelson, Andrew Short, Doug Smith, and Peggy O’Leary—plus additional comedy from Michelle Wolf, Reid Faylor, Brendan Eyre, and Joel Walkowski, all performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Natalie Shure & Chip Dwyer: Stand-Up Showdown

[$] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($32.75 & 2-drink min.): DJ Cipha Sounds, Bklyn Mike, Omar the Comedian, and more headlining tonight through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Cipha Sounds Don’t Get Gassed

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10): 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, improv troupe Salmon Diane, sketch/improv duo Klepper & Grey): The Friday Night Sh*w

[$] 8:30 pm & 10:30 pm ($26 & 2-drink min.) A former cast member of Saturday Night Live, and who’s appeared on VH1, Showtime, and CNN, headlining tonight and Saturday at the Gotham Comedy Club: Dean Edwards

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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Sara Schaefer (inventive, luminous comic; co-star of MTV’s The Nikki and Sara Show; Emmy-nominated staff writer for Jimmy Fallon; VH1’s Best Week Ever; co-host of hit podcast You Had to Be There), Trieste Kelly Dunn (actress in Cinemax’s Banshee, lead in Loves Her Gun). Katja Blichfeld & Ben Sinclair (Web series High Maintenance), and Max Silvestri (host of Big Terrific) performing stand-up and/or being interviewed at Brooklyn’s Pine Box Rock Shop (12 Grattan Street) hosted by Chris Rose with DJ Allison Pacelli: Late Night Basement

9:30 pm ($10): Two PIT upstairs theatre improv groups making up a musical on the spot, one with sharpness and the other with a friendly greeting: Dagger and Hello

9:30 pm ($10): Jeanne Stafford (communications coach & fundraiser for the campaigns of President Reagan and President Bush), Robert A. George (New York Post), Tim Wainwright (Christianity Today), Lucas Zachary Hazlett (MTV), and many more gather to make fun of politics at The PIT downstairs lounge: Electoral Dysfunction

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($10): Singing improvisors at The Magnet—tonight with extra-special guest Tara Copeland, briefly back from LA—using an interview with an audience member to craft The Made-Up Musical

[FREE] 10:00 pm: A showcase of NYC comics (not announced) performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Creek Cave Live

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Superb improvisors Craig Rowin, Matt Fisher, Sue Galloway, Dan Klein, Brian Faas, Matt Moses, and/or Conner O’Malley—who this year defeated The Stepfathers and thoroughly crushed another troupe at Cage Match before losing by a single vote—make up scenes about an audience member’s legal dispute at the UCB Chelsea theatre: The Law Firm: Law & Disorder

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Jackie Kashian (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, Last Comic Standing; for hilarious cartoon about LA pet owners, please click here), Hodapp & Rothwell (ace improvisors & sketch comics), and Nat Towsen (co-host of The Moon Show, host of Downtown Variety Hour) performing stand-up or sketch at UCB East hosted by Brandon Scott Jones, D’Arcy Carden, Justin Tyler, Kelly Hudson, and/or Alden Ford: Gentrify

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($10): Abbi Jacobson & Ilana Glazer are interviewed about their new TV series Broad City that debuts January 22nd on Comedy Central, plus an interview with celebrity fitness trainer Joel Harper, at a late night talk show hosted by Jamie LeeLo at The PIT upstairs theatre: Brunch Night

[TOP PICK] 11:00 ($8): “It’s simple. There is a mark. And we are the 11 thieves ready to make the biggest heist of our lives. The catch? You, the audience, suggest the heist. Whether it is stealing the Eiffel tower or a pack of cigarettes from a bodega, we will hatch an elaborate scheme to make sure you get what you want!” for the debut of this improv show at The PIT downstairs lounge: Brocean’s 11

[FREE] 11:00 pm: The debut of a free weekly stand-up show, with tonight’s comics Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents), Liz Miele (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central, Damaged), Troy Allen, Henry Cruz, Julie Kottakis, and Christopher Wagner performing at the Old Man Hustle Bar (39 Essex Street) hosted by Keith Fuerstenberg: Dark Night Comedy

[TOP PICK] 11:30 pm ($5): Sketch comedy from a group that explains what awaits you in the afterlife, and from friends Matt B. Weir and Matt J. Weir who, by total coincidence, have the same last names, at The Magnet theatre: The Junk Brothers: Immortal Family and We’re Matt Weir: The Murder Trilogy

Midnight ($5): A sketch show for those who “have a deep nostalgia for sitcoms such as Full House, Step-by-Step, and Family Matters but wonder what they might have been like without the interference of network censors” at UCB East from group Out of the Woods: TGIF

Friday 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

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

[FREE] 6:00 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 host Eli Sairs: The Orphanage

[ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): Attend to perform improv with experienced PIT performers at The PIT downstairs lounge, with a weekly rotating selection of formats and hosts: Happy Hour

[FREE] 7:00 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 Sarah Tollemache and/or Paul Oddo: The Friday Night Hot Chicks Open Mic

[FREE] 8:00 pm: An open-mic show that’s first come, first serve, with each comic getting 5 minutes on stage at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City: Mic and Cheese

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($5): Improv is dominated by guys…and for no good reason. A way to help remedy this situation are shows like this one, which is an open improv jam for any gal wanting to participate, at any experience level. This monthly UCB Chelsea event is helmed by Shannon O’Neill (breathtakingly innovative, lighting-quick, and fearless improvisor/sketch comic and rising star; The Chris Gethard Show, The Stepfathers, ASSSSCAT 3000, Strangers Wanted, Ladies Night): The Lady Jam

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

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

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

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

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

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 6/19/13

June 19, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Daniel Kitson is performing July 7-13 in NYC; grab tickets here

Ilana Glazer and Abbi Jacobson: Broad City

Ilana Glazer & Abbi Jacobson perform as Broad City…

Whitney Cummings

…and Whitney Cummings performs with Colin Quinn and more at the 8:00 pm Comedy Cellar

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: A free screening at The Magnet of comedy Web series Improv, which “follows Mary McDonald (Maggie Morris) as she takes her first improv class in New York City. There she encounters a strange and hilarious array of characters including the eccentric improv teacher Frederick, the unintentionally racist Ross, and a dysfunctional father and son duo. She befriends two of her more normal classmates, all the while dealing with perhaps an even stranger assortment of characters both at work and at home.” Screening will be followed by a brief Q&A: Improv: A Web Series

6:30 pm ($5): Sharon Spell (host of The Big Shrink) auditions a one-woman show about her parents passing away within three weeks of each other, which Sharon will somehow make hilarious: You’re Doing Great!—A Bold-Faced Lie; plus a show about which I know nothing but sounds promising, Chickawaukasontown: The Most Midwestern Town in the Midwest, also auditions for a spot on the schedule of the prestigious UCB Chelsea stage: Spank

7:30 pm ($5): Expanding the UCB longform improv showcased on Harold Night is this weekly show at UCB East which tonight features groups Hotspur and Never Never: Lloyd Night

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): This UCB Chelsea double-bill kicks off with a one-act play about the Biblical end of the world written by & co-starring Kevin Hines and directed by Brandon Gulya: Apocalypse in Connecticut

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

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Whitney Cummings (star of NBC’s Whitney; HBO, Showtime, Comedy Central, MTV), Colin Quinn (SNL, Comedy Central’s Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn, HBO, NBC, Broadway), Sherrod Small (writer/performer on TBS’ Are We There Yet?, Comedy Central, VH1), Godfrey (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, 30 Rock, VH1; films Zoolander, Original Gangsters, Soul Plane; 7 Up Yours ads), and Jeff Lamp (Jay Leno, Comedy Central) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam): Whitney Cummings, Colin Quinn, and More

[TOP PICK] [FREE] Seating at 8:30, show at 9:00 pm (RSVP to confirm your spot at FreeComedyWednesdays@gmail.com): Mark Normand (hilarious rising star; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; opens for Amy Schumer; co-host of We’re All Friends Here), Michelle Wolf (adorable, irresistible dark comic rising star; IFC), Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award), Tom McCaffrey (Comedy Central, VH1, The Onion), Seaton Smith (Opie & Anthony Virus Tour), and Matt Ruby (MTV; co-host of We’re All Friends Here, blog Sandpaper Suit) performing stand-up at Ella (9 Avenue A) produced by Mark Normand, Matt Ruby, and Gary Vider: Hot Soup

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

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Abbi Jacobson & Ilana Glazer created Broad City as a Web series, which was then picked up for development as a TV series for FX…and is also a monthly stage show at UCB Chelsea. Tonight’s theme is Writer’s Room for this “delicately crafted hour of fun:” Broad City Live

9:30 pm ($5): Each booked performer has 10 minutes to do whatever he or she chooses—stand-up, sketch, improv, music, dance, or something beyond categorization. “It’s simple, it’s fun, and it might get crazy” at The PIT downstairs lounge: Guerrilla Theatre

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:45 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Neal Brennan (razor-sharp, edgy comedy veteran; HBO, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, co-creator of Chappelle’s Show), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Trevor Noah (South African comic; Jay Leno, Chelsea Lately, one-man show Born a Crime), Gregg Rogell (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Louie, Comedy Central), and Lenny Marcus (David Letterman, MTV) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam): Neal Brennan, Gary Gulman, Trevor Noah, and More

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

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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: The wonderful Sasheer Zamata (highly charming, innovative rising star; Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer, FX’s Totally Biased; member of red-hot improv troupe Doppelganger, sketch troupe The Prom, and Harold Night troupe Bucky) hosts as many as a dozen guests packed into 75 minutes performing stand-up, improv, sketch, and occasionally acts that defy categorization. The level of talent can vary wildly, but for some (like me), that’s part of the laid-back fun; plus Sasheer is going to be a huge star, so catch her in this intimate setting while you can. (Tonight’s scheduled guests should eventually be posted here.) Come support the experimentation, and periodic magical surprises, that this uniquely organic rollercoaster of a weekly show at UCB Chelsea makes possible—and don’t forget to toss $1 in the bucket on your way out: School Night

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

Wednesday Open Mics & Jams

[TOP PICK] [ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): Cammi Climaco (co-host of Ask Me Stories) hosts this weekly hour-long open-mic storytelling show, with typically six audience members chosen from a bucket of names getting to tell tales for 6-7 minutes each at The PIT downstairs lounge: Cammi Climaco’s Storytelling Open Mic: Six by Six

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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up providing 5 minutes per comic at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Benel Germosen: Cracking It

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

[ALMOST FREE] 10:30 pm ($1): Biweekly open-mic stand-up, with each comic getting an unusually long 6-10 minutes, at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by James III & Jamie LeeLo: Hump Day

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

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

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Your chance to perform on stage with experienced improvisors at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Lucas Hazlett: Improdome

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

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

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

Gotham Comedy Club
(208 West 23rd Street; headliners on weekends, Comedy Juice on Tuesdays, and more; 2-drink min.)

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

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

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


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Tuesday 6/28/11

June 28, 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.

Ilana Glazer, Nikki Glaser, and Jon Glaser

Ilana Glazer, Nikki Glaser, Jon Glaser, and more gather for the delightfully silly "Glas/zer Family Reunion"...

Pete Holmes

...and Pete Holmes continues his week-long visit to NYC from LA tonight at "Righteous Kill" and "Sweet"

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

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm: Lauren Adams & Megan Maes performing musical improv, plus stellar guest improv troupe Doppelganger, at Warbucks

7:00 pm ($5): Two tough guys from the 1930s will explain the ins and outs of Hollywood at sketch show Listen Kid! ; and duo improv by Dustin Drury and Andrew Yurman-Glaser in Upstate New York

[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 ($5): Todd Barry (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, FX’s Louie, HBO’s Flight of the Conchords and Bored to Death, Adult Swim, feature films The Wrestler and Pete Smalls is Dead), 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), Dan Crohn (stand-up visiting from Boston), Justy Dodge, and musical guest Scott Gibson performing at the Lolita Bar at Liam McEneaney’s Tell Your Friends

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Comic book creators join super-hosts Alex Zalben, Justin Tyler, and Pete LePage for a lively & hilarious discussion about four-color pop culture at The PIT’s downstairs lounge: Comic Book Club

[TOP PICK] [FREE; plus free BBQ!] 8:00 pm: Jon Glaser (long-time writer for Conan O’Brien, star of Adult Swim’s Delocated), Nikki Glaser (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing), Aaron Glaser (Funny or Die), and brother & sister Eliot Glazer (author of My Parents Were Awesome) and Ilana Glazer (co-star of Broad City) in a very silly show gathering all the comics in NYC whose last names happen to be Glaser or Glazer (only Eliot & Ilana are actually related) at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street): The Glas/zer Family Reunion

8:00 pm ($5; includes free tecate): “A panel of comedians give their hilarious takes on the more grim/sensational crime stories taken from NYC’s daily newspapers. It’s live comedy with a streak of yellow journalism and dark New York flavor” at Queens LIC’s The Creek hosted by Pat Dixon (Comedy Central Presents): The New York City Crime Report

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

8:00 pm to Midnight ($5): Four full hours of improv for only five bucks—tonight featuring UCBT house troupes Mr. Crime, Standard Oil, American Cousin, Sandino, and Airwolf, and at 11:00 pm UCBT students mixing it up with improv veterans—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: Tambourine & BEEES!

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): Pete Holmes (one of the very best stand-ups in the country; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, The Daily Show, John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up, Ugly Americans, VH1’s Best Week Ever, staff writer for NBC’s OutsourcedThe New Yorker; co-star of the hilariousFront Page Films), Stuckey & Murray (superb singing comedy duo), Colin Jost (writer for Saturday Night Live), Greg Barris (host of Heart of Darkness), Nick Turner (host of Monsters and Too Cool for School), and guest DJ Matt McCarthy performing at Ella (9 Avenue A) guest-hosted tonight by Roger Hailes (Comedy Central’s Chappelle’s Show, Live at Gotham): Sweet

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Pete Holmes (one of the very best stand-ups in the country; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, The Daily Show, John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up, Ugly Americans, VH1’s Best Week Ever, staff writer for NBC’s OutsourcedThe New Yorker; co-star of the hilariousFront Page Films), Kumail Nanjiani (David LettermanSaturday Night Live, The Colbert Report,Jimmy Kimmel, writer/performer for Comedy Central’s Michael & Michael Have Issues; winner of the 2009 ECNY Awards for Best Male Stand-Up), Mike Lawrence (shrewdly funny curmudgeon; Comedy Central), and Anton Laroid 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 ($5): A one-woman show from Julie Ann Dulude about being raised by strict Catholic parents: Bless This Mess

[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.

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.