NYC Top Comedy Choices for Saturday 12/29/12

December 29, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

My favorite fast food place, Tuck Shop, got hit hard by Sandy. Please check out its amazing meat & veggie mini-pies; the 68 East 1st Street store is near UCB East and open very late…and is run by a fiery Aussie redhead who’s a delight.

Kate McKinnon and Ted Alexandro

SNL’s Kate McKinnon performs a character bit at Characters Welcome; Ted Alexandro does stand-ups at The Stand (8:30) and Comedy Cellar (11:00)

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

[TOP PICK] [$] 2:00 pm & 8:00 pm ($65): This isn’t pure comedy, but an enchanting hodgepodge of original tall tales fueled by laughs. The 2-hour play from the wonderful guys of PigPen blends shadow puppetry, songs, inventive staging, and more to create living dreams. For my review of PigPen’s two previous shows at FringeNYC, please click here and here. This newest work is their most ambitious, and that sometimes results in the story feeling too slow or padded; but it also yields a deeper emotional payoff. And even though not all the bits hit the mark, so many of them do that you’re likely to feel satisfied—and missing PigPen’s world after the show is over. The production is at The Gym at Judson (243 Thompson Street) in the West Village: The Old Man and the Moon

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

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): Kate McKinnon (genius sketch comic and stellar cast member of Saturday Night Live; voice actress for Adult Swim’s Venture Brothers and Comedy Central’s Ugly Americans), Sasheer Zamata (highly charming, innovative rising star; host of UCBT’s School Night, member of red-hot improv troupe Doppelganger, sketch troupe The Prom, and Harold Night troupe Bucky), and many more performing character bits at UCB East hosted by Justin Tyler and Michael Hartney: Characters Welcome

7:00 pm ($5): A one-woman show by Anna Drezen about “lonely cannibals, clingy ghost roomies, manic pixie devil worshipers, and other adorable stains-on-society who just want to make a friend” at The PIT upstairs theatre: Spooky Jerks

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($7): A sharp musical improv troupe makes up stories with song and dance based on an audience suggestion: Choral Rage

7:30 pm ($10): Talented 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

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($42 plus 2-drink min.): The creator & star of Showtime’s Dave’s Old Porn and Comedy Central’s Insomniac, has also performed on HBO, David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, The Daily Show, and his own Comedy Central Presents special, and is one of the most respected stand-ups in the biz, headlining tonight through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Dave Attell

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:30 pm ($20): TV & movie star Janeane Garofalo, Ted Alexandro (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, two Comedy Central Presents half-hour specials; frequently opens for Louis C.K.), Rachel Feinstein (finalist on Last Comic Standing; Comedy Central; opens for Sarah Silverman on tour), Sherrod Small (writer/performer on TBS’ Are We There Yet?, Comedy Central, VH1), and Yannis Pappas performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Janeane Garofalo, Ted Alexandro, Rachel Feinstein, and More

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10): James Adomian (hilarious, super-charged character comic-impressionist; finalist on most recent Last Comic Standing; Harold and Kumar 2), Mark Normand (hilarious stand-up; Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Claudia Cogan (Last Comic Standing, MTV, Logo, here! TV), Andy Haynes (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Last Comic Standing), Alice Wetterlund (improv troupe Garamond; College Humor), and Toby Muresianu performing stand-up at UCB East guest-hosted by Nick Turner: 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

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

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($11.34 online; or $10 at the door—but this show typically sells out in advance): Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, Comedy Central’s Indecision 2012), Amber Nelson (fearless, innovative rising star; sketch troupe The Prom, co-host of Late Night Stand and Mustache Party), Tom McCaffrey, Pete Lee, Christie Walsh, Nick Turner, Nate Fridson, Nathan Anderson, Abigoliah Schuman, Ron Krasnow, and Joel Walkowski performing stand-up for this show in which comedy and burlesque are weirdly blended together based on the reasoning “The nude female form is truly a work of art. That’s why people the world over like to jerk off to it. Who are we to disagree with the world?”at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Pat Dixon (Comedy Central Presents): Pat Dixon’s (Nearly) Naked Lady Hour: Now with Bacon Bar

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

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): UCBT improv troupe Airwolf—which includes such talents as John Frusciante, Molly Lloyd, Tim Martin, and Emily Axford—makes stuff up at UCB East based on hellish experiences of audience members: Airwolf: Let’s Go Back to Your Place

10:30 pm ($7): Magnet Instructors Louis Kornfeld and Rick Andrews pair together for one night of improvisation as comedy duo Kornfeld & Andrews

[TOP PICK] [$] 11:00 am ($20 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Ted Alexandro (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, two Comedy Central Presents half-hour specials; frequently opens for Louis C.K.), Pete Correale (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Comedy Central one-hour special), Mark Normand (hilarious stand-up; Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle Show, For the Love of the Game), Lenny Marcus (David Letterman, MTV), Robert Kelly (Louie, Comedy Central, Opie & Anthony), and Matt Simons (Jay Leno) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua: Ted Alexandro, Pete Correale, and More

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($5): Adam Newman (Comedy Central, MTV, College Humor, comedy CD Not for Horses), Leah Bonnema (VH1, WeTV, Logo), Missy Baker, and Tim Dillon 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

Midnight ($5): Sketch troupes Coker & Stratton and a challenger TBA compete for audience laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea hosted by sketch troupe Sidecar: Backyard Brawl

[FREE] Midnight: NYC stand-ups (not announced) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Nick Turner (Jimmy Fallon, VH1): Midnight Run

[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

[TOP PICK] [$] 12:45 am ($20 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, HBO, Showtime, MTV), Pete Correale (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Comedy Central one-hour special), Mark Normand (hilarious stand-up; Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle Show, For the Love of the Game), Modi (HBO’s The Sopranos, Comedy Central), and Dan Naturman (David Letterman, Jay Leno) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua: Big Jay Oakerson, Pete Correale, Mark Normand, and More

 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 11/29/12

November 29, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Kate McKinnon and Melanie Hamlett

It’s a night for hilarious tales, with comedy geniuses Kate McKinnon (above) and Chris Gethard at Don’t Tell My Mother; traveling adventurer Melanie Hamlett (and yes, that’s a real photo) at both Sideshow Goshko and Risk!…

Leslie Goshko and Lillian DeVane.jpg

…superb storyteller Leslie Goshko hosting her monthly extravaganza Sideshow Goshko; Boston-based Lillian DeVane visiting NYC to perform at Kevin Allison’s Risk!…

Tom Shillue and Jim O'Grady

…and ace storytellers Tom Shillue and Jim O’Grady performing at Tom Shillue’s Funny Story

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: Carter Edwards (UCB talent booker) is tonight’s guest at this weekly open-mic storytelling show, with each performer given a whopping eight minutes to captivate & impress, at UCB East hosted by John Flynn: Oh, Hey Guys!

6:00 pm ($1): PIT musical improv troupe Adorable mixes with musical improv novices on-stage at the downstairs lounge for Pitch

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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Sirius XM, Huffington Post) hosts this monthly storytelling show at the KGB Bar (85 East 4th Street, off Second Avenue), with tonight’s guests Melanie Hamlett (brilliant storyteller/writer; Moth Grandslam Champion, Marie Claire Magazine, amazing blog, roving adventurer), Andrew Linderman (host of Local Stories), Ted McAdams, and Michele Carlo, plus accordion playing by Dr. Michelle-Leona Godin: Sideshow Goshko

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

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

7:30 pm ($5): Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central’s Indecision 2012), Emily Heller (Comedy Central; staff writer for Rooftop Comedy; for ruminations on pregnancy, please click here), Ilana Glazer (Broad City), and Nick Turner (Jimmy Fallon, VH1) performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Halle Kiefer: Splitsider and Tumblr’s Dog and Pony Show

[TOP PICK] 8:00 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 Chelsea: Mike O’Brien: 45 Minutes of Things

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($20): A former roommate & drinking buddy of such comedy giants as David Cross and Marc Maron performs a one-man show that was such a hit at August’s FringeNYC it’s been extended indefinitely. Please read my review by clicking here, and Jason Zinoman’s New York Times review by clicking here; and then come share an intimate hour with Matt Graham at the Soho Playhouse’s downstairs Huron Club so he can explain life and meaning and why This Too Shall Suck

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5 at the door or ($6.17 online): James Adomian (hilarious, super-charged character comic/impressionist; finalist on most recent Last Comic Standing; Harold and Kumar 2), Annie Lederman (Chelsea Lately), Liam McEneaney, and more perform stand-up along with sideshow attractions including the wonderful Cherry Pitz (burlesque), Vincent Price Lady Aye (sword swallowing), Miss Vivien (piercing burlesque), and The Goon (human blockhead) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City for this unusual carny experience: Abigoliah’s Bizzarre Bazaar

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($65 retail or $40 here): This isn’t pure comedy, but an enchanting hodgepodge of original tall tales fueled by laughs. The 2-hour play from the wonderful guys of PigPen blends shadow puppetry, songs, inventive staging, and more to create living dreams. For my review of PigPen’s two previous shows at FringeNYC, please click here and here. This newest work is their most ambitious, and that sometimes results in the story feeling too slow or padded; but it also yields a deeper emotional payoff. And even though not all the bits hit the mark, so many of them do that you’re likely to feel satisfied—and missing PigPen’s world after the show is over. The production is at The Gym at Judson (243 Thompson Street) in the West Village: The Old Man and the Moon

8:00 pm ($5): Two singing improv troupes make up entire musicals on the spot in this double-bill at The PIT downstairs lounge: Team Black and Dagger

[$] 8:00 pm ($32.75 & 2-drink min.) A TV star who was a cast member of MTV’s Punk’d and is now a cast member of FX’s The League headlining through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Stephen Rannazzisi

8:00 pm-MIdnight ($7 for the entire evening): The Magnet house troupes Junior Varsity, Hello Laser, Horses, and The Boss performing improv for two hours, followed at 10:00 pm by Medusa (all improvisers stay on stage at all times, and alternate between speaking roles and playing inanimate objects), and then at 11:00 improv troupe competition Inspirado (like UCBT’s Cage Match, but with a game-like challenge component) featuring Featherweight vs. Weekend of Regret: The Magnet’s Night Out

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm doors, 8:30 pm show ($10, which includes a free beer): Star storyteller Tom Shillue (Conan O’Brien, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents, 2011 ECNY Award for Best Storyteller) gathers top comics to tell funny stories at the Brooklyn Brewery (79 North 11th Street), with tonight’s guests Eric Slovin (writer for Saturday Night Live 2002-2005 and Important Things with Demetri Martin; Comedy Central Presents), Jim O’Grady (The New York Times, Moth GrandSlam Champion), Carolyn Castiglia (Last Comic Standing, VH1; for sample of Carolyn as white rapper, please click here), and Joanne Solomon (upcoming essay collection Walking Mr. Lieberman): Tom Shillue’s Funny Story

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:30 pm ($30 & 2-drink min.): A TV & movie star who created & hosted Last Comic Standing, was a cast member of CBS’ Gary Unmarried and Ghost Whisperer, has done extensive sports broadcasting for ESPN, and has appeared in such feature films as Jerry MacGuire, Pay It Forward, and Hereafter (opposite Matt Damon) headlining through Saturday at the Gotham Comedy Club: Jay Mohr

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:00 pm ($15): A killer lineup of genius comics telling confessional stories:Kate McKinnon (genius sketch comic and stellar cast member of Saturday Night Live; voice actress for Adult Swim’s Venture Brothers and Comedy Central’s Ugly Americans), Chris Gethard (brilliant improvisor and comedic storyteller; star of Comedy Central sitcom Big Lake and Manhattan Cable Access’ The Chris Gethard Show; The Stepfathers, The Nights of Our Lives, author of new bestseller A Bad Idea I’m About to Do and Weird New York), Lizz Winstead (co-creator of The Daily Show, former host on Air America), and Jen Kober (co-star of HBO’s Treme, punched out Larry David on HBO’s Curb Your Enthusiasm, Showtime) sharing embarrassing moments at 92Y Tribeca (200 Hudson Street): Don’t Tell My Mother

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 9:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 260-2445 and mention HyReviews.com, but there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): Ted Alexandro (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, two Comedy Central Presents half-hour specials; frequently opens for Louis C.K.), Mike Yard (Comedy Central), and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[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): Erin Judge (Comedy Central; comedy album So Many Choices; for hilarious short bit on men vs. women, please click here), Adam Lowitt (Executive Producer of The Daily Show), Neal Stastny, Anthony Devito, Anton Shuford, and David Smithyman performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Adam Conover and/or Emily Heller: Fresh Out

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Tig Notaro (hilarious stand-up; Comedy Central Presents, The Sarah Silverman Program, staff writer for the upcoming Amy Schumer show on Comedy Central; for Louis CK on Tig, and to buy an extraordinary set she performed, please click here and here) makes a rare NYC appearance with her friend Dave Hill (one of the most original and hilariously sharp alternative comics in the country; HBO, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, NPR, bands Valley Lodge and Diamondsnake, champion rapper; book Tasteful Nudes) at The Dave Hill Explosion

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): Melanie Hamlett (brilliant storyteller/writer; Moth Grandslam Champion, Marie Claire Magazine, amazing blog, roving adventurer), Lillian DeVane (Boston-based stand-up), Julia Wiedeman (one-woman show Naked People), and Candice Guardin performing at The PIT upstairs theatre to share tales on tonight’s theme Thanks at one of the finest storytelling shows in the country along with host Kevin Allison (legendary MTV sketch series The State, HBO, Comedy Central, VH1): Risk!

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Improvisors make up one-act plays on the spot at The PIT downstairs lounge, produced by Dan Hodapp & Micah Sherman: The Scene

[TOP PICK] 9:45 doors, 10:15 pm show ($9; show up 30-60 minutes early to buy snacks/drinks): Mystery Science Theater 3000 goes street in this delightful series by Wyatt Cenac (star correspondent for The Daily Show) and Donwill (hip-hop group Tanya Morgan) in which the boys watch a ridiculous movie and yell comments at it throughout. It all happens at Brooklyn’s reRun (147 Front Street, between Pearl & Jay Streets), with tonight’s film a happy surprise: Shouting at the Screen

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 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’ Long Island City hosted by Mike Feeney: On the Offensive

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): UCBT improv troupes Airwolf and Graceland compete for audience laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea for the raucous Cage Match

11:00 pm ($5): Nick Turner and Team Submarine each perform 30-minute stand-up sets at UCB East hosted by Adam Newman: Big Long Sets

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 Monday 8/13/12

August 13, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.
For FringeNYC 2012 shows rated & ranked, please click here.

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:

Kate McKinnon

Saturday Night Live star Kate McKinnon…

Nikki Glaser

…and MTV star Nikki Glaser perform at Jena Friedman’s Entertaining the Bartender

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Weekly open-mic storytelling show running for an hour (sadly, cut down from 90 minutes), with audience members chosen from a bucket of names getting to tell tales for 8 minutes each at The PIT downstairs lounge along with host Jake Hart: The Dump

6:00 pm ($5 cover & $5 drink min.): The perfect show for short attention spans—open-mic stand-up with 4 1/2 minutes per set and 20 comics crammed into 2 hours—at the Greenwich Village Comedy Club (99 MacDougal Street) for John Morrison’s Village Motel

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show running about 90 minutes at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with host Chris Gaynor: Open Mic Mondays

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): A monthly storytelling show from the wonderful Adam Wade (two-time Moth GrandSlam Storytelling Champion (2006 & 2009) and record-breaking 18-time StorySlam Champion; The New York Times Magazine; host of hilarious monthly storytelling extravaganzas Tales of the Cosmos and Whatever Happened to the Nerds?; for a sampling of Adam’s award-winning tales, please click here), along with guest storyteller Diana Spechler, at Under St. Marks: The Adam Wade from New Hampshire Show: Tales of Life, Love, and Little League

[FREE] 7:30 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

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 One and One Bar’s Downstairs Nexus Lounge (76 1st Street, corner of First Avenue) hosted by Nathan P., followed by a raucous afterparty with dancing & drink specials from 10:00 to midnight: Inspired Word’s Open Mic Joint

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($9.47 online or $8 at the door): Wyatt Cenac (star correspondent for The Daily Show), Barry Rothbart (Jay Leno, Comedy Central, MTV’s Punk’d, IFC), JC Coccoli (Key & Peele; looks great in a hat), and RG Daniels (host of Sunday Night Stand-Up) performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) hosted by Jared Logan (rising star; Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, host of ComedyJuice): Hot Tub Variety

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Two UCB Chelsea house sketch troupes try out fresh material: The Prom (which includes such stellar talents as Sasheer Zamata, Amber Nelson, Stephen Soroka, Siobhan Thompson, and Ari Scott), and Everything Rabbits (which includes the lovely & uniquely hilarious Violet Krumbein): Maude Night: The Prom & Everything Rabbits

8:00 pm ($5): Making great use of UCB East’s previous incarnation as an indie movie theatre, tonight features screenings of select films running five minutes or less—most of them funny—crafted in the style of TV pilots. The shorts receiving the most audience votes get to continue with additional episodes, while the others are “canceled” at Channel 101

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Kate McKinnon (genius sketch comic and latest cast member of Saturday Night Live), Nikki Glaser (co-star of MTV’s The Nikki and Sara Show; Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing; podcast You Had to Be There), Kurt Metzger (Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Phoebe Robinson, and the Cocoon Central Dance Team performing at the Ace Hotel lobby (20 West 29th Street, between Fifth Avenue & Broadway) for this monthly stand-up show hosted by wonderful dark humor comic Jena Friedman (staff writer for David Letterman) : Entertaining the Bartender

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Making great use of UCB East’s previous incarnation as an indie movie theatre, a screening of Mike Birbiglia’s Sleepwalk with Me—plus a live appearance by Mike: Sleepwalk with Me

9:30 pm ($5): Two UCB Chelsea house sketch troupes try out fresh material: Charlemagne (which includes such talents as Daily Show writer Zhubin Parang) and Beige: Maude Night: Beige & Charlemagne

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Following a club format, hosts Nore Davis & Andrew Short perform stand-up throughout for a total of 25 minutes, two comics each perform a 15-minute set, and then a seasoned headliner closes out the show with a 20-minute set, all at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: On the Road

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): Twelve improv comics who are “friends of Dorothy” perform at The Magnet hosted by Andrew Fafoutakis: There’s No Place Like Home: A GLBTQ Event

[FREE] 10:30 pm: Karaoke plus Mad Libs—in which the audience chooses a list of words to swap into a popular song—at the UCB East Bar hosted by karaoke experts Alan Starzinski and Amy Jo Jackson, plus live keyboard accompaniment by Joe McGinty: Karaoke Night at the Hot Chicks Room

[FREE] 10:30 pm: Improv students are welcomed onto the stage at The PIT downstairs lounge for this weekly open access show hosted by Gary DeNoia & Keith Huang: Base Jam

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest comics in the world—who are no longer being announced in advance, but it’s virtually always a great lineup—at UCB Chelsea probably hosted by someone wonderful: Whiplash

[FREE] 11:00 pm: If you’re an audience member who loves stand-up, Monday at 11 should be Whiplash! night (see listing above). If you’re a comic who couldn’t get booked on UCBT’s all-star show, though, you can opt to instead practice your skills at this exceptionally supportive stand-up open-mic at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Jared Reed: Fresh

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 7/25/12

July 25, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Kate McKinnon and Jon Benjamin

One of the all-time great sketch comics, Saturday Night Live cast member & comedy genius Kate McKinnon; utterly unique TV star & comedy genius Jon Benjamin…

Julie Klausner, Cintra Wilson, and Josh Rubin

…and storyteller/wit Julie Klausner, author/critic Cintra Wilson, College Humor actor/director Josh Rubin…

Elna Baker and Kevin Townley

…plus red-hot hosts, genius author/storyteller Elna Baker & actor/singer/writer Kevin Townley: The Talent Show

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 to midnight: Six free hours of improvisation The PIT upstairs theatre for Super Free Wednesday

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up providing four minutes per comic, with “15 people chosen randomly through e-mail, and five walk-ins; and a guaranteed spot to anyone who performs in character as a famous explorer” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Comedic Exploration Club of Long Island City, West

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): “Jonathan Blank and Samara Doucette say what everyone else thinks on dates, but never says… so join them and guest comedians as they divulge all of their wildest and most embarrassing dating stories! This monthly storytelling show contains the truth and nothing but the truth. However, most of the stories are more surreal than if David Lynch directed romantic comedies. Everything from wild hookups to emotional breakups are on the table” at The PIT downstairs lounge: This is Awkward

7:00 pm-12:30 am ($7 for the entire evening): Magnet house troupes The Party Lions, Silver Fox, Millions of Hugs, Brick, The Wrath, Chet Watkins, Leviathan, and Horses performing improv, followed by a free audience interactive show with The Party Lions at 11:30 pm: The Magnet’s Megawatt

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

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5 at the door, or $6.39 in advance online—the latter is highly recommended because this show usually sells out): Killer lineup includes a now-rare stage appearance by newest Saturday Night Live cast member Kate McKinnon (comedy genius and one of the most hilarious sketch comics ever), Jon Benjamin (unique off-the-wall comedy genius; FOX’s Bob’s Burgers, FX’s Archer, Comedy Central’s Jon Benjamin Has a Van, Adult Swim, MTV’s Human Giant), Julie Klausner (razor-sharp comic & storyteller; host of How Was Your Week podcast; author of I Don’t Care About Your Band), Joan Juliet Buck (Editor-in-Chief of French Vogue 1994-2001), Cintra Wilson (New York TImes “Critical Shopper” columnist, author of several books including A Massive Swelling: Celebrity Re-examined as a Grotesque Crippling Disease), Eliot Glazer (It Gets Betterish, author of My Parents Were Awesome), and more performing at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) with hosts movie & TV actor Kevin Townley (Men in Black III, The Sitter, My Super Ex-Girlfriend, Law & Order) and comedy jewel Elna Baker (NPR’s This American Life, author of The New York Regional Mormon Singles Halloween Dance): The Talent Show: TED Talks

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Wow—the two best sketch shows currently at UCB Chelsea are on a double-bill tonight, and are yours for an absurdly low five bucks. First up is a delightful dark musical about the rich consuming the poor—literally. Witty songs from Brian Glidewell, Marcy Jarreau, and Kevin Carter, a uniformly strong cast (Megan Maes, Aaron Jackson, Michael Martin, Katie Schorr, Dan Hodapp, Brian Glidewell, and Stephanie Streisand), and sharp direction from Christopher Gladysz and Lauren Conlin Adams make this 30-minute surreal parody of Newsies a winner as a UCBT comedy, and recommended. That said, right now the story is paper-thin and the characters cardboard. While the latter is turned into an asset (e.g., a leg-injured character is hilariously named “Cripply”), I’m hoping the creators consider making all the elements deeper and more nuanced, and expanding the production to a 90-minute legit theatre length. Meanwhile, enjoy this remarkably compact version that delivers a quick, sharp punch to the gut you’re likely to remember: Newsadoozies: A Man-Eating Musical

…and then it’s a noir mini-play written & directed with immense wit by Michael Trapp (Stone Cold Fox), who with this script demonstrates he’s a rising star with a surefire career in the biz. And beyond the pages, Michael’s put together an all-star cast, including John Murray (simultaneously gripping and hilarious as a hardboiled detective with an absurdly short attention span), Brandon Scott Jones (who delivers an unforgettable scene with John that’s worth the trip all by itself), and D’Arcy Carden (who abandons her usual laid-back persona here to be smoking hot). These are all total pros who are virtually assured careers in TV and film. Catch them while they’re honing their craft and waiting to be noticed in one of the most consistently fun shows in NYC: Death Wears Stilettos

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Mark Normand (hilarious stand-up; Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Abbi Crutchfield (co-host of Positively Awesome and The Living Room), Michael Che (Comedy Central), Matt Koff (Onion News Network, WitStream, 9 Am Meeting), and Matt Wayne performing at the Niagra Bar (112 Avenue A & 7th Street) for this biweekly show hosted by Charla Lauriston & Sean Kleier: Fun Comedy Good Times Why Not?!

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

[FREE] 8:30 pm: Typically terrific NYC comics (not announced) performing at this free weekly comedy show at Brooklyn’s Cameo (behind Lovin’ Cup) typically hosted by Jenny Slate, Gabe Liedman, and/or Max Silvestri: Big Terrific

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($5): Neil Casey & Anthony Atamanuik, both genius members of Death by Roo Roo, perform the jaw-dropping feat of making up an entire feature film at UCB East as The Two-Man Movie

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): One of the finest comedic storytelling shows in the country, in which brilliant writer/performers —who tonight are Adam Wade, Melanie Hamlett, Christian Capazzoli, Jon Gabrus, and host Dave Martin—tell tales that are brutally honest and utterly hilarious at UCB Chelsea, with tonight’s theme Virgins: The Nights of Our Lives

9:30 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups (not announced) bringing their A-game—because their sets are captured at this new monthly show as audition tapes—performing at The PIT basement lounge: The Grass Route: Built from the Underground Up

[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 (ace improv troupe Doppelganger) 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; and this is often one of the most amazing comedy shows in town. (Tonight’s scheduled performers include Katey Healy-Wurzburg and Adam Newman; for the complete lineup, please click here.) Come support the experimentation, and periodic magical surprises, that this uniquely organic rollercoaster of a weekly show at UCB Chelsea makes possible—and don’t forget to toss $1 in the bucket on your way out: School Night

[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 Grandma’s Ashes: The Improv Jam

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Saturday 7/21/12

July 21, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.
For best video previews of FringeNYC 2012 shows, please click here.

Kate McKinnon

One of NYC’s greatest treasures, Saturday Night Live cast member Kate McKinnon, tells tales at Animated Stories…

Nikki Glaser

…Nikki Glaser performs at Heart of Darkness and The Great Debate…

Joselyn Hughes

…and Joselyn Hughes performs at If You Build It

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

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

[FREE] 5:00 pm: New improv teams experimenting with new forms at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City, hosted by Andy Rocco and Jon Monje: Anybody Vs. Everybody: An Improv Show for You

6:00 pm ($5): Improv troupes Günther, Big Fat Liars, and Pumpkin at The Magnet kicking off your Saturday evening: The Rundown

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): Comedy genius and Saturday Night Live cast member Kate McKinnon is tonight’s star guest at this monthly open-mic storytelling show at UCB East hosted by Todd Bieber (Commercial Interruption, Director of Content & Production for UCBComedy.com) that at the end selects a favorite from the audience tales to be turned into an animated short film premiering the following month (for hilarious samples, please click here). Also guests tonight are Arthur Meyer (Jimmy Fallon) and Nate Dern (UCBT Artistic Director): Animated Stories

[FREE] 7:00 pm: NYC stand-ups performing stand-up at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Ray DeVito, Ben Kronberg, Nick Cobb, and/or Tim Dimond: Shoot the Shite

[TOP PICK] 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): Andrew Yurman-Glaser and Dustin Drury first go solo and then join forces at The Magnet as improv duo Upstate

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($46.50 & 2-drink min.) A comedy superstar (for a sample set, please click here) headlining tonight through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: D. L. Hughley

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: Big Black Car and The Baldwins

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10): 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), Joselyn Hughes (delightful stand-up; former staff writer/performer for Tosh.0; BFF & occasional sketch comedy partner of Brooke Van Poppelen), Ryan Hamilton Rob O’Reilly, and Greg Stone performing at UCB East hosted by Kara Klenk: If You Build It

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($8 at the door or $10.70 in advance online): Stand-ups Nikki Glaser (co-star of MTV’s The Nikki and Sara Show; Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing; podcast You Had to Be There) and Barry Rothbart (Jay Leno, Comedy Central, MTV’s Punk’d, IFC), musical guests Steven Bachmann and Susanna Raeven, and more performing at Brooklyn’s Union Hall for a show hosted by Greg Barris: Heart of Darkness

[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] [FREE] 9:00 pm: A TV & Broadway stand-up star hones an hour of material at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Colin Quinn Tries Stuff Out

[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), 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), Rachel Feinstein (finalist on Last Comic Standing; Comedy Central; opens for Sarah Silverman on tour), and more performing stand-up 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

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($8): From the producers of The Scene, improvisors—tonight including troupes Gameface, GCA, and Moscow River Sharks—make up one-act plays on the spot at The PIT downstairs lounge: Act One

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

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Stand-up, sketch, and who knows what else at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by a stand-up/sketch duo: Team Submarine and Friends

[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

10:00 pm ($5): Improvisors make up a Quentin Tarantino movie at The PIT downstairs lounge for this new themed show: The Tarantino

[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

11:00 pm ($8): A young new all-guy improv troupe making stuff up at The PIT upstairs theatre: Gentlemen Party

[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 new monthly UCB Chelsea event is helmed by the wonderful Shannon O’Neill Shannon O’Neill (breathtakingly innovative, lighting-quick, and fearless improvisor/sketch comic and rising star; The Stepfathers, Diamond Lion): The Lady Jam

Midnight ($5): Nikki Glaser (co-star of MTV’s The Nikki and Sara Show; Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing; podcast You Had to Be There), Greg Warren (Comedy Central Presents, Last Comic Standing), and Yannis Pappas (Comedy Central, VH1’s Best Week Ever) participate in a comedic debate at UCB East hosted by Michael Shawki, Jeff Wesselschimdt, and Dan Licata : The Great Debate

[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 Monday 9/12/11

September 12, 2011

For full details, please visit HyReviews.com.

For comprehensive coverage of the FringeNYC 2011 Encore Series, please click here.

Chris Gethard and Puppy

Comedy genius Chris Gethard performs at new UCBeast stand-up show Wheelhouse; puppies are on parade at Hot Tub Variety...

Kate McKinnon

...Kate McKinnon's stellar group Gramp's performs sketch on Maude Night...

Puppy

...and more puppies at Hot Tub Variety

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 stand-up show running about 90 minutes at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with host Chris Gaynor: Open Mic Mondays

[FREE] 6:30 pm: Kevin Allison (legendary MTV sketch series The State, HBO, Comedy Central, VH1, host of award-winning storytelling show Risk!) hosts this free open-mic show for storytellers, in which you can put your name in a hat for the chance to tell a five-minute true story…and if it’s a good one, possibly be included in Kevin’s popular podcasts on the Web: Risk! Storyslam

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): Comedy duo Leah Rudick & Katie Hartman, back from their second year at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival, where they were proclaimed “biggest revelation” by the Guardian, performing a brand new sketch show: Skinny Bitch Jesus Meeting

7:00 pm & 9:00 pm (no cover, 1-item min.): The perfect show for short attention spans—open-mic stand-up with 4 minutes per set and 25 comics crammed into 2 hours—with an early show hosted by Sean Donnelly & Blaine Perry at 7:00 pm, and an entirely different group of stand-ups hosted by Dan Cartwright & Dave Greek at 9:00 pm—at the Luca Lounge (222 Avenue B off 14th Street) for John Morrison’s Motel Luca

[FREE] 7:30 pm: NYC stand-ups (unusually, not yet announced) performing stand-up at a free weekly show in the Manchester Pub hosted by Phoebe Robinson: Case of the Mondays Comedy

[FREE] 7:30 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] 8:00 pm ($6.50 online or $8 at the door): 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), Jiwon Lee (Comedy Central), musical guest Franz Nicolay, and puppies being hugged at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) with sketches and more from a duo who between them won four 2011 ECNY Awards—including Best Variety Show and Best Hosts—Kristen Schaal and Kurt Braunohler: Hot Tub Variety: 2nd Annual 9/11 Memorial Puppy Hugging Parade

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Comedy genius Chris Gethard (world-class improvisor and comedic storyteller; star of Comedy Central sitcom Big Lake and UCBT’s The Chris Gethard ShowMagic Box of Stories, The Stepfathers, The Nights of Our Lives, author of book Weird New York; winner of 2011 ECNY Award for Best Tweeter), plus stand-ups Mike Lawrence (shrewdly funny curmudgeon; Comedy Central), Nick Vatterott, Katey Healy-Wurzburg, and Amber Nelson at this new weekly stand-up show at UCBeast (Upright Citizens Brigade East Village Theatre at 155 East 3rd Street, between Avenues A & B) hosted by ace improvisor and aspiring stand-up Will Hines: Wheelhouse

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): One of UCBT’s very finest in-house sketch comedy troupes Dweeb(spearheaded by the razor-sharp Amy Heidt and Stephen Soroka), plus in-house troupe Thunder Gulch (which isn’t what it used to be, but features such appealing talents as Leslie Meisel, Ari Scott, and Amber Nelson), trying out new bits at Maude Night

8:00 pm ($5): Any show ballsy enough to begin its description with “Have you ever loved a mop? Susan-Kate Heaney has…” is worth exploring. This one-woman show is happening at The PIT: Confessions of a Mop-oholic

8:30 pm ($5): “A spectacular implosion of clown, medicine show, and sideshow theatrics” at The Magnet: Clown Baggage

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): UCBT has developed several terrific in-house sketch comedy troupes, but only two of them currently rival the finest sketch groups in the country. One is Stone Cold Fox (which now has a stellar show every Friday at 7:30 pm). The other is Gramp’s, spearheaded by comedy genius Kate McKinnon, which is performing tonight. Kate’s group will be trying out all-new bits this evening, but the chances are a bunch of them will be breathtakingly smart, inventive, and hilarious. Also on this double-bill is house troupe Onassis, which isn’t in the same league, but includes such notable performers as Sue Galloway—all at Maude Night

9:30 pm ($5): From the producers of The Scene, improvisors make up one-act plays on the spot at Act One

9:30 pm ($5): “A drama written by teen Jerome McDonough that teaches teens about the evils of alcohol abuse. A talented and twistedly funny group of adults (the Marumsco Valley Players) will present the hard-hitting play, stage directions and all—while under the influence!:” Alky

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Long-form improv from troupe Casual Sex Offenders at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: CSO Improv Comedy

10:00 pm ($5): Improv veterans Brandon Gardner & Chelsea Clarke hosting a show with guest improvisors at UCBeast (Upright Citizens Brigade East Village Theatre at 155 East 3rd Street, between Avenues A & B): Improv Nerds

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest stand-ups in the world—who tonight include Jessi Klein (fresh, unique, deliciously organic comic who’s one of the best stand-ups in the country; staff writer for Saturday Night Live; Comedy Central, VH1, NBC, CNN, Adult Swim) and Hannibal Buress (staff writer for 30 Rock, Saturday Night LiveDavid Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Louie, Comedy Central)—hosted by the wonderful Leo Allen (HBO, Saturday Night LiveConan O’Brien, Comedy Central) at Whiplash

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.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Friday 7/22/11

July 22, 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.

Kate McKinnon

Kate McKinnon shows off her world-class star quality in one of the best comedy shows of the year, "Kate McKinnon on Ice"...

Mike Still

...and then Mike Still shows off his thirst to rule the world in "Dictator for Life"

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 start at 5:30 pm) at The Creek in Queens’ Long Island City with hosts Mike Recine and Annie Lederman: The Shinebox

7:00 pm ($8): Award-winning improv duo Lucas Kavner and Bradford Jordan make stuff up with “a celebrity guest improvisor’ at Swords, while all-gal improvisors Alexis Saarela, Brigid Boyle, Elizabeth Findlay, and Ashley Ward perform as troupe Taco Supreme

7:00 pm ($7): “Strange, mysterious, beautiful, and disgusting, this show will dazzle you with sketch comedy… and magic!” by The Weird Sisters

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): Sketch comedy genius Kate McKinnon performing her latest one-woman show, which features “Singing! Dancing! Ice Skating! Hoarders! Conjoined Twins! Temple Grandin!” This inventive, dynamic production is among the very best to grace the UCBT stage this year. (And if you don’t want to take my word alone, check out Jane Borden’s Time Out New York review.) Kate is the most precious of diamonds in our NYC comedy community; come see why in Kate McKinnon on Ice

…and in the second half of this double-bill, Mike Still (Death by Roo Roo, Diamond Lion) performs a one-man show that—like Kate’s show—was directed by fellow Roo Roo star Neil Casey: Dictator For Life

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($20 online using discount code BBOX1): One of the very best shows at FringeNYC 2010 was an award-winning comedy from NYC’s own Faye Lane, a luminous storyteller and singer who will charm your socks off—and possibly give you a moon pie to boot—at the Soho Playhouse’s downstairs Huron Club. This marvelous event recently received a 2011 Bistro Award for Musical Comedy and 2011 MAC Award for Special Production. Please read my review by clicking here, watch Faye make a pecan pie by clicking here, and then take advantage of this revival running Friday nights to experience the hilarious and unforgettable Faye Lane’s Beauty Shop Stories

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: 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), Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on most recent Last Comic StandingJay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, hit comedy CD Vegan Mind Meld), Chris Laker, Sean Donnelly, and Nick Rutherford performing stand-up at O’Hanlon’s (14th Street off 1st Avenue) hosted by Mark Normand: Hot Soup

8:00 pm ($10): An improv troupe making up a musical on the spot after a friendly greeting: Hello

8:00 pm ($7): Greg Wilker & Kelly Buttermore perform the best sketches they’ve written over the past five years at Kelly & Greg: 2007-2011

[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 & 10:30 pm ($25 & 2-drink min.): A stand-up who’s performed numerous times on David Letterman and Jay Leno, starred in his own Comedy Central Presents special, and starred in a second Comedy Central special titled Mitch Fatel is Magical, headlining tonight through Sunday at the Gotham Comedy Club (with opener Michael Somerville): Mitch Fatel

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): Some of the finest improv in NYC from the comedy genius members of The Stepfathers

9:00 pm ($7): “In March of 2009 a gaggle of performers were born. Some died, some wandered off into the woods, others went to work in the private sector. Those that remained grew strong by feeding on the nectar of specific choices and the gruel of strong character work. The 2-year-old terror that exists today is akin to watching a Tsunami of hair and teeth attack a baby Blue Whale and destroy it with the will of a thousand hungry Burnese Mountain Dogs. What does it all mean? We don’t know.” In other words, improv from Chet Watkins

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:30 pm ($15): An imaginative and award-winning sketch troupe using song, movement, and clever scenarios to turn familiar rituals on their head (for a video about how boys will be girls, please click here): The Harvard Sailing Team

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($7): Singing improvisors, including such world-class performers as the breathtakingly talented Tara Copeland, using an interview with an audience member to craft The Made-Up Musical

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Comedy genius Thomas Middleditch (when he’s not in LA), Nate Lang, Craig Rowin, Matt Fisher, Fran Gillespie Sue Galloway, and other superb improvisors make up scenes about an audience member’s legal dispute at The Law Firm: Law & Disorder

[TOP PICK] 11:30 pm ($5): Before the 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, sketch/improv duo Klepper & Grey): The Friday Night Sh*w

[TOP PICK] Midnight ($5): Three NYC sketch troupes—delightful gal duo Skinny Bitch Jesus Meeting, quick-witted Patrick Borelli, and guy duo Inside Joke Films—each performing one of their most popular bits and one of their personal favorites in a sketch revue hosted by Aaron Kheifets: A-Side/B-Side

[$] 12:30 am ($31.25 & 2-drink min.) A provocative comedy star who’s written for Richard Pryor, Red Foxx, and Saturday Night Live, and performed on Chappelle’s Show and David Letterman, headlining through Sunday at Carolines: Paul Mooney

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.