NYC Top Comedy Choices for Thursday 3/5/15

March 5, 2015

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

TV Alert: Adam Sandler is on Conan O’Brien;
Robert Smigel is on Seth Meyers;
Heather Anne Campbell, Trevor Moore, and Nick Thune
are on @midnight;
Ari Shaffir’s weekly storytelling show This Is Not Happening
is at 12:31 am on Comedy Central

Leslie Meisel

Leslie Meisel…

Achilles Stamatelaky

…Achilles Stamatelaky…

Cipha Sounds

…Cipha Sounds, and more at UCB’s I’m Cool Sketch Showcase

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] 5:30 pm: Some of UCB’s top character comics (not announced) each get 7 minutes to perform solo sketch bits at UCB East before judges of the most prestigious comedy festival in Canada: Just for LaughsCharacter Auditions

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm (Pay Whatever You Like): “Delusional cruise ship entertainer and musical theater fanatic Lance and his scheduled guests Liza Minnelli, Hugh Jackman, and Miami Sound Machine perform for an instantly forgettable evening of chat, song, dance, and Lance before he heads back out to sea” by Peter Michael Marino and friends at The Triple Crown Underground (330 7th Avenue, between 28th and 29th Streets): Late With Lance

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5; sold out of seats, but you can probably get in if you’re okay with standing): Some of UCB Chelsea’s finest sketch & character comics—including Leslie Meisel, Natasha Vaynblat, Achilles Stamatelaky, Cipha Sounds, Aaron Glaser, and Terry Withers—perform before industry folks who can make their careers at an all-you-can-watch revue hosted by Kara Klenk (writer for VH1’s Girl Code and Guy Code; Comedy Central, TruTV, Spike, Nickelodeon; host of If You Bring It): UCB Chelsea’s I’m Cool Sketch Showcase

7:30 pm ($5): Phoebe Robinson (Seth Meyers, Last Comic Standing, Broad City, MTV’s Girl Code, Totally Biased, co-host of Blaria Live), Hari Kondabolu (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, Totally Biased), Matt Ruby (MTV; sharp co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here, award-winning blog Sandpaper Suit), Subhah Agarwal, and Josh Sankey performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Sean Crespo, Dan Wilbur, and/or Katina Corrao: Lasers in the Jungle

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:45 pm, 8:00 pm, 9:30 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s stand-ups include Gary Gulman at the 7:45 show; Greer Barnes, Big Jay Oakerson, Marina Franklin, Dov Davidoff, Sam Morril, and Wil Sylvince (hosting) at the 8:00 show; Joe Matarese, NIck Griffin, Greer Barnes, Dov Davidoff, Ricky Velez, and Marina Franklin (hosting) at the 9:30 show; and Dave Attell, Jena Friedman, Big Jay Oakerson, Ricky Velez, Sam Morril, and Wil Sylvince (hosting) at the 11:30 show, with three of the shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) and the 8:00 pm show at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Thursday

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($5 online using discount code NORTHERN; no min.): Mike Lawrence (nerd persona but razor-sharp mind has made this stand-up a rapidly rising star; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up, comedy album Sadamantium), Jessica Kirson (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, HBO, Showtime, Bravo, VH1, Logo one-woman show My Cookie’s Gone), Nate Bargatze (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents), Nore Davis (Inside Amy Schumer, HBO’s Last Week Tonight, Boardwalk Empire, Comedy Central’s Russell Simmons Presents The Ruckus, MTV), and Wali Collins performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street) hosted by Josh Carter & Ray DeVito: Northern Discomfort: Mike Lawrence, Jessica Kirson, Nate Bargatze, and More

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

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm-Midnight ($10 for the entire evening): The Magnet house improv groups The Boss and Junior Varsity performing improv for an hour, followed at 9:00 pm by Rashomon (eight improvisors use multiple perspectives and time-jumping to reveal reenact different versions of the story of the accused…and the complexity of human nature), at 10:00 pm by a half-dozen solo character comics at The Pretty Fast Character Showcase, and finally at 11:00 by improv competition Inspirado (like UCBT’s Cage Match, but with a game-like challengecomponent): The Magnet’s Night Out

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Sabrina Jalees (irresistible dynamo stand-up and rising star; Comedy Central’s Nightly Show and Adam Devine’s House Party, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever, MTV’s Failosophy, co-host ofHow Many Questions), Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central), Jeffrey Joseph (Jay Leno, HBO, FOX’s In Living Color, Comedy Central), Tom McCaffrey (Comedy Central, VH1, The Onion), John Early (30 Rock, Ars Nova’s Showgasm), and Kenny Zimlinghaus (Sirius XM Radio host) performing stand-up for this weekly show at Brooklyn’s Splitty (415 Myrtle Avenue) hosted by Greg Johnson (Sirius XM): Myrtle Comedy: Sabrina Jalees, Erik Bergstrom, and More

[FREE] 8:00 pm: A rare Queens indie comedy show featuring stand-ups Rachael Parenta, Carrie Gravenson, Julia Lundy, and Alexis Guerreros performing in Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue) hosted by Liz Simons & Jenn Wehrung: Laugh It Up, Astoria

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Sergio Chicon, Marisa Douenias, Cyrus McQueen, and Jabari Baraka Davis performing at Poco Restaurant & Bar (33 Avenue B at 3rd Street) produced by Jawann Carmona, Cassidy Kirch, Lawrence DeLoach, and Sarah Hartshorne: FTH Comedy

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

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): The razor-sharp writers of Late Night with Seth Meyers gather on the UCB Chelsea stage to perform an all-improvised show at Seth Meyers Writers: Crate Night With Set Fires

9:30 pm ($5, which includes a free beer): Aparna Nancherla (one of the finest stand-ups in the country, with a delightfully wry style and lightning-quick mind; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, @midnight, Totally Biased, recently opened for Tig Notaro at Town Hall), Joe Zimmerman (Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing), Eli Sairs (host of open mic The Orphanage), Janelle James, and Kyle Ayers performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Little Skips (941 Willoughby Avenue) hosted by Jaqi Furback: Big Ups Comedy

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

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Improv groups What I Did For Love and Higgins compete for your laughs and votes atUCB Chelsea in the raucous Cage Match

11:00 pm ($5): NYC stand-ups (not announced) hosted by the brilliantly surreal and hilarious Joe Pera (for a very special one-minute set at Carolines, please click here), Dan Licata, and Charles Gould at the UCB East theatre: Dan + Joe + Charles’ Show

Thursday Open Mics & Jams

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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Stand-up open mic, with names pulled from a bucket and each selected comic getting 4 minutes, atUCB East hosted by Brandon Scott Wolf and/or Paul Oddo: Thursday Night Open Mic

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

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

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Weekly open mic that provides 5 minutes for each audience member whose name is pulled out of a bucket to perform a true story, sketch, or characters at Brooklyn’s Over the Eight (594 Union Ave) hosted by JiJi Lee: Split Personality Open Mic Storytelling & Sketch

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 Thursday 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 Ian Fidance: Comics Phoning It In

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

9:30 pm (free for audience members, $5 or 1 drink min. for stand-ups wanting to perform): Open mic stand-up providing 7 minutes per comic (and a free recording of your set!), with order determined raffle-style. Sign up by emailing info@oldmanhustle.com or calling (212) 253-7747, or just walk in and supply your name, to perform at theOld Man Hustle Bar (39 Essex Street) hosted by Solomon Chehebar: Peep Show Comedy Open Mic

[FREE] 11:00 pm: An open-mic show that’s first come, first serve, with each comic getting 3-5 minutes on stage atThe Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Josh Alba: Mic and Cheese

[FREE] 11:00 pm: A supportively silly jam for duo improv (you’ll be paired up on the spot) in which the audience shows “Good Scene!” at the end of every scene at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by improv group Judith: Good Scene!: A Judith Jam

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-$20)

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

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

The Annoyance Theatre
(367 Bedford Ave. in Brooklyn; J/M/Z to Marcy or L to Lorimer; 50-seat theatre; shows free-$10)

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Laughing Devil/The Standing Room
(4738 Vernon Blvd., by #7 train; Queens LIC club; free cover Fri-Sat with code LICVIP; 2-drink min.)

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

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

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.

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NYC Top Comedy Choices for Monday 11/10/14

November 10, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

TV Alert: Eric Idle is on Craig Ferguson;
Deon Cole, Eliza Coupe, and Donald Faison are on @midnight

Jessica Williams

The Daily Show’s wonderful Jessica Williams guest-hosts stand-up with Phoebe Robinson at Night Train

Leslie Meisel

…the wonderful Leslie Meisel (who’s a new mom) performs in sketch show Stone Cold Fox Goes to the Mall

Lifetime Unoriginal Movies

…and Magnet artistic director Megan Gray and improv friends make up Unoriginal Lifetime Movies

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 ($7): Ace gal improvisors Megan Gray, Rosie Whalen, and more springboard an audience suggestion to create a terrible Lifetime TV movie (“come prepared to watch a live film filled with heartbreak, disease, violence, despair, hope, courage, sassy neighbors, murders, heroes, whores, assholes, dumb babies who take up all your time, revenge, love, sex, hate, and chocolate”) at The Magnet theatre: Lifetime Unoriginal Movies

[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 15-time StorySlam Champion; The New York Times Magazine; host of Real Tales of College; for Adam’s award-winning tale of being an NBC page on Conan O’Brien, please click here) featuring guest storyteller Thomas Pryor (author of I Hate the Dallas Cowboys: Tales of a Scrappy New York Boyhood) at Under St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue): The Adam Wade from New Hampshire Show: Tales of Life, Love, and Little League

[FREE] 7:00 pm to midnight: Five free hours of improvisation at The PIT downstairs lounge: Super Free Monday

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:45 pm, 9:30 pm, and 11:15 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s comics include a strong lineup of Tom Papa, Mark Normand, Nick DiPaolo, and Wil Sylvince (hosting) at the 7:45 show; Nick Griffin, Greer Barnes, and Dan Soder (hosting) at the 9:30 show; and Dave Attell, Paul Mecurio, Rachel Feinstein, Big Jay Oakerson, Zainab Johnson, and Joe List (hosting) at the 11:30 show, all performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Monday

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, Joanna Bradley demonstrates she’s a fine performer who needs to work with a tough editor, as her material doesn’t come across as funny so much as harsh and angry—which doesn’t do justice to her genuine acting and comedic talent. But maybe one-woman has improved since I’ve seen it. Find out atI Am Very Important People

…and in the second half of this double-bill is one of the finest sketch groups in the country. Its writers include stellar comics Silvija Ozols and Brandon Gulya (Brandon also directed this show); and its cast is superb: Brandon Scott Jones, Leslie Meisel, John Murray, Molly Lloyd, Connor Ratliff, and Johnathan Fernandez. (If you’re in show biz, hire them.) This new collection of sketches revolves around the mass shopping experience: Stone Cold Fox Goes to the Mall

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Storyteller/comics Janeane Garofalo, Naomi Ekperigin, Corrine Caputo, and more share true tales for this confessional storytelling show at UCB East hosted by the extraordinary Ruby Karp: HelloGiggles

8:00 pm ($8 at the door or $9.47 online): Jessica Williams (star correspondent on The Daily Show) & Phoebe Robinson (Comedy Central’s Broad City, MTV’s Girl Code, FX’s Totally Biased, Glamour Magazine) guest host while Wyatt’s out of town, with stand-ups Alingon Mitra, Shakir Standley, Byron Bowers, and Matteo Lane performing at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street): Night Train

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

8:30 pm ($7): Political comic Jamie Kilstein (Conan O’Brien, CNN, MSNBC, Showtime, Citizen Radio) performs stand-up, and then leads his friends springboarding improv scenes off of “social and political stories from the lives of audience members” at The Magnet theatre: A People’s Guide to Comedy

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10 at the door or $13.53 online using discount code BIGDADDY): Peter Aguero (Conan O’Brien, Moth GrandSlam Champion, WNYC’s Moth Radio Hour, The BTK Band) tells seven stories about his relationship with his dad at Under St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue), plus an opening story from guest Andy Christie (host of The Liar Show; The New York Times, NPR, Moth GrandSlam Champion): Daddy Issues

[TOP PICK] 9:30 ($5): Ace improvisors Shannon O’Neill and Tami Sagher team with guests Brandon Scott Jones, Chelsea Clarke, and Morgan Grace Jarret to brilliantly make up scenes on the spot at the UCB Chelsea theatre: Tami and Shannon Have Friends

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Superb improv/sketch comics Laura Grey, Connor Ratliff, Matt Dennie, Josh Sharp, Natasha Vaynblat, and Kristen Acimovic perform sketches that are a joint effort of UCB and IFC.com, debuting tonight at the UCB East theatre: IFC & UCB Comedy Original Series

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($7): 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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 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 albumSadamantium), Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), Seth Herzog (long-time 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), Chris Distefano (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV2’s Guy Code), Rory Albanese (The Daily Show), Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, MTV), Ben Kronberg (Jimmy Kimmel, Seth Meyers, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, ABC; clash with Roseanne on this season’s Last Comic Standing led to #gofuckyourselfBen), Randy Syphax, Vladimir Caamano, and Rell Battle performing stand-up for this free weekly show at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street) typically hosted by Aaron Berg (TV series 24 Hour Rental, documentary A Universal Language): Frantic Mondays

[FREE] 10:00 pm: A monthly comedy variety show featuring sketch, character bits, and stand-up at The Creekupstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Anthony Apruzzese: Comedic Information

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest comics in the world—who aren’t announced in advance, but it’s usually a great lineup and often an extraordinary one—at UCB Chelsea hosted by the Leo Allen, Aparna Nancherla, or someone else wonderful: Whiplash

11:00 pm ($5): “Improvisers and stand-ups do what they do best…and then switch places to try their hand at what the other does best. Performing to sold out crowds at UCBT-LA, this show is a cross-discipline Cage Match” at UCB East hosted by Boris Khaykin: Impro(vs)tandup

Monday 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 theStand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): Stand Up NY Open Mic

[FREE] 6:00 pm: Open mic stand-up show that provides each performer whose name is pulled from a bucket 5 minutes on stage—and also allows everyone play Bingo!—at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Julia Lundy & Veronica Elizabeth: Bingo Open Mic

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

6:00 pm ($5 plus 1 drink min.): Booked open mic stand-up providing 7 minutes per comic for this 2-hour show atKlimat Lounge (77 East 7th Street) hosted by Gregory Joseph. To get on the performance list for future shows, email Gregory at evgigglepit@gmail.com: East Village Giggle Pit

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 6:30 pm: Open-mic storytelling, with names drawn out of a bucket and 5 minutes per performer, at the Slake Bar (251 West 30th Street) hosted by Julia Wiedeman: Happy Hour Story Hour (Open-Mic Storytelling) with Julia Wiedeman

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 5 minutes for each comic who reserves a spot in advance (by emailing Dan Fox at danmaxfox@gmail.com) and 3 minutes for each comic who signs up on the spot (sign-up starts at 6:45 and ends at 8:30) at Brooklyn’s Muchmore’s (2 Havemeyer Street) hosted by Dan Fox: Muchmore’s Stand-Up Open Mic

[FREE] 7:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show, with 10 comics each performing for 5 minutes, at Brooklyn’s Colony(274 4th Avenue) hosted by Emily Winter: Sparky the Dog Open Mic

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

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

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Improv students are welcomed onto the stage at The PIT downstairs lounge for this weekly open access show hosted by Gary DeNoia & Langston Belton: Base 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-$20)

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)

This Theater
(154 West 29th Street; new venue that, at its best, features shows comparable to UCB & PIT; free-$12)

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: Thank God for Hy Bender’s religiously updated show bible BestNewYorkComedy.com. He is literally the only person in NYC providing daily summaries of what’s happening comedy-wise. It must be exhausting keeping that monster of a website alive…It is your daily comedy itinerary and it scares me how on top of his shit this guy is.

Please feel encouraged to reach out to tell me about comedy shows, hire me for book or screenplay work, or for any other reason by emailing me at hy@hyreviews.com.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 1/5/14

January 5, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.
For a sampling of Classics, please click here.

Ryan Hamilton

Ryan Hamilton and more perform stand-up at two free codeword SNOW shows at The Stand…

Leslie Meisel

…and the wonderful Leslie Meisel is among the improvisors making up one-act plays on the spot at Act One

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] 5:00 pm: A smorgasbord of of stand-up, comedic music, comedic dance, sketch, and more at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Mike Fiorito : Mishmash Mashup

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] [FREE] 7:00 pm (FREE online using discount code SNOW; no min.): Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), Wil Sylvince (Comedy Central, BET’s Comic View), Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), Damien Lemon (MTV2’s Guy Code, Comedy Central), Derek Gaines, and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Free Snow Show with Ryan Hamilton, Wil Sylvince, Joe List, and More

7:00 pm ($8): A sketch show that provides “advice from family, friends, and co-workers about your terrible life decisions” at The PIT upstairs theatre: Don’t Do That

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

7:30 pm ($5): “Jamaal Sedayao is inviting a few friends to sing songs for you. Armed with an iPhone camera, Jamaal will also show some low production-value videos that you might like” at The Magnet theatre: Born to Karaoke

[$] 7:30 pm ($31.25 & 2-drink min.) A comic who won Last Comic Standing Season 3, has performed on Jay Leno, and starred in his own Showtime one-hour special Who’s Paying Attention?, headlining tonight through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Alonzo Bodden

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): From the producers of The Scene, improvisors—tonight including the wonderful Leslie Meisel, Ashley Ward, and Steve Siddell, plus groups Bird Frat and Jessica McKlintock—make up one-act plays on the spot at The PIT downstairs lounge: Act One

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($14 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.), Michael Che (hilarious rising star stand-up; David Letterman, Comedy Central, VH1), Nick Griffin (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents), Jon Fisch (David Letterman, Comedy Central, Last Comic Standing, VH1), and Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ray Ellin (Latenet, Gong Show Live): Ted Alexandro, Michael Che, Nick Griffin, Jon Fisch, and Greer Barnes

8:00 pm ($7): Jermaine Fowler (MTV’s Guy Code and Wildn Out, Comedy Central, Adult Swim’s The Eric Andre Show), Kevin McCaffrey (writer for David Letterman; TruTV), Alex Koll (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central), and more performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Union Hall hosted by Caroline Creaghead: Creaghead & Company

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Jamie Lee (staff writer/performer for The Pete Holmes Show; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, MTV’s Girl Code, VH1), Luke Cunningham (writer for Jimmy Fallon), Amy Miller (The Amy Schumer Show, Sorry About Your Dad podcast), Ryan Reiss, KC Arora, and Alex Grubard performing at the Three of Cups lounge (83 First Avenue at 5th Street) hosted by RG Daniels: Sunday Night Stand-Up

8:00 pm ($5): Sean Donnelly (David Letterman, MTV), Louis Katz (Jimmy Fallon, HBO, Comedy Central Presents), Amy Miller (The Amy Schumer Show, Sorry About Your Dad podcast), Danny Jolles, Matteo Lane, and Jess Salomon performing stand-up at UCB East with host Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon): If You Build It

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

[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.), Wil Sylvince (Comedy Central, BET’s Comic View), and more performing stand-up at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[DISCOUNTED] [FREE] 9:00 pm (FREE online using discount code SNOW; no min.): Adam Newman (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV, host of Big Long Sets), Eddie Brill (former long-time booker for David Letterman), Pat Dixon (Comedy Central Presents, FOX, VH1, E!, host of Nearly Naked Lady Comedy Hour), Dave Smith, Mike Finoia, Alingon Mitra, and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Free Snow Show with Adam Newman, Eddie Brill, Pat Dixon, and More

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Erik Bergstrom (cartoonist/author of Grimmer Tales, The New Yorker, blogger for Comedy Central’s Indecision 2012), Ashley Brooke Roberts (co-host of The Dream Show), Mike Cody, and TJ Young performing stand-up in the East Village’s Beauty Bar for this free weekly show hosted by Adam Sokol, Brad Austin, and/or Nate Fridson: Comedy at Beauty Bar

9:00 pm ($5): Sketch comedy from trio Pat May, Elena Skopetos, and Michael Delisle at The Magnet theatre: The Rolling Scones

[$] 9:00 pm ($15): Female stand-ups and burlesque performers mix comedy and nudity at The Kraine Theatre (85 East 4th Street): Stand-Up and Take Your Clothes Off

[TOP PICK] [$] 9:45 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): 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), Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Michael Che (hilarious rising star stand-up; David Letterman, Comedy Central, VH1), Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), and Phil Hanley (Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ray Ellin (Latenet, Gong Show Live): Todd Barry, Judah Friedlander, Michael Che, Ryan Hamilton, and More

[$] 11:30 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Nikki Glaser (co-star of MTV’s The Nikki and Sara Show; Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central Half Hour; podcast You Had to Be There), Kurt Metzger (staff writer for Inside Amy Schumer; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Sam Morril (Comedy Central), Wil Sylvince (Comedy Central, BET’s Comic View), Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), and Brian Scolard (TBS’ Sullivan and Son, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour Special, CBS, ABC, NBC, FOX, AMC, TNT) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ray Ellin (Latenet, Gong Show Live): Nikki Glaser, Kurt Metzger, Sam Morril, Joe List, and More

Sunday Open Mics & Open Stages

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

[ALMOST FREE] 5:00 pm ($1): Sign up at 4:30 pm to do improv with experienced PIT performers at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Sasha Capelli, Eitan Levine, and Shaina Stigler: 10K Jam Jam

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Stand Up NY
(236 West 78th Street, off Broadway; rare 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 10/16/13

October 16, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Sasheer Zamata and Chris Gethard and Leslie Meisel

Sasheer Zamata, Chris Gethard, Leslie Meisel, and many more show off their stellar comedic talents at 8:00 and 9:30 at industry event UCBT NY Variety Hour Showcase

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 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

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

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm & 9:30 pm ($5): Some of the finest comedic writer/performers in New York, including Chris Gethard, Sasheer Zamata, Neil Casey & Will Hines, John Murray & Leslie Meisel & Connor Ratliff, Summer & Eve, and many more demonstrate what they can do at this industry showcase at UCB Chelsea. Please note this is one show that’s being performed twice, back to back, the only exceptions being that Chris and Neil & Will are performing 8:00 pm only, and Summer & Eve is performing 9:30 pm only: UCBT NY Variety Hour Showcase

[$] 8:00 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Nick Griffin (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents), Gregg Rogell (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Louie, Comedy Central), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show), 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): NIck Griffin, Gregg Rogell, Greer Barnes, and More

8:00 pm ($15; no min.): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Dan St. Germain (enormously likeable and rapidly rising star who has several shows in the works; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half-Hour Special, The Electric Company, MTV, VH1), Joe Matarese (David Letterman, Chelsea Lately, Comedy Central Presents, Bravo, IFC), Graham Kay, Monroe Martin, and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Judah Friedlander, Dan St. Germain, and More

[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

[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] 9:00 pm ($6): Monologues & music from Schoolboy Q and Troy Ave, improv from groups Coal and Hotspur, and more performing at Brooklyn’s Union Hall produced by Cipha Sounds and Lukas Kaiser: Radness

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Myq Kaplan (one of the quickest minds in comedy, and rapidly rising star; finalist on most recent Last Comic Standing; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, hit comedy CDs Vegan Mind Meld and Meat Robot), David Angelo (CBS’ 2 Broke Girls), Kiran Deol (ABC’s Modern Family), Nathan Macintosh, Nat Baimel, and Brad Hagen performing at this free weekly comedy show at Lucky Jack’s Bar (129 Orchard Street) produced by Kyle Fincham, Lance Weiss, and Brendon Fitzgibbons: Gandhi, Is That You?

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] [$] 10:00 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): John Mulaney (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; writer/performer for Saturday Night Live; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, one hour special & CD/DVD New in Town, VH1’s Best Week Ever; for John’s great bit on Weekend Update, please click here), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), Carmen Lynch (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing finalist, Comedy Central), and James Smith (Australian comic; HBO’s Flight of the Conchords, Comedy Central; for stand-up video on what it’s like to be Australian in New York, please click here) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam): John Mulaney, Gary Gulman, Greer Barnes, Carmen Lynch, and James Smith

[TOP PICK] 10:00 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

[FREE] 10:00: NYC stand-ups performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City as part of the Reddit.com online community, hosted by Adam Lash (HBO, Showtime, The Daily Show) and/or Nathan Anderson (Uncoolio): /r/standup

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: The wonderful Sasheer Zamata (rapidly rising star; Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer, FX’s Totally Biased, MTV’s Hey Girl, Apple Computer commercials; improv groups Doppelganger and Bucky) and Charla Lauriston (host of Free Cable) host 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 include Jena Friedman, Aaron Jackson, Rebecca Vigil, Scott Rogowsky, and Gibran Saleem; for the complete list, 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

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): “Well, it’s time to say goodbye. Your favorite TV series that you’ve been following for the last several years is, sadly, drawing to a close. This is the last time you’ll ever see your favorite stars again. And… it’s entirely improvised,” featuring such talents as Julie Sharbutt and Lucas Hazlett at The PIT downstairs lounge: The Series Finale

[$] 11:30 pm ($10 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Uncensored stand-up from Mark Normand (hilarious rising star; Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central; opens for Amy Schumer; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Kurt Metzger (staff writer for Inside Amy Schumer; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Wil Sylvince (Comedy Central, BET’s Comic View), and Dan Soder (Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1; for set about being a hypochondriatic drug user, please click here) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam): The Nasty Show: Mark Normand, Kurt Metzger, Big Jay Oakerson, and More

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

[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

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

[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 Lucas Hazlett: Improdome

[FREE] 11:30: Sign up at 11:00 pm for the opportunity to make up scenes at The Magnet with group The Music Industry: 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.)

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 8/27/13

August 27, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

For top Dave Chappelle sketches, please click here.

Justy Dodge

Justy Dodge headlines at Carolines…

Leslie Meisel

…and Leslie Meisel shares stories at Tell the Bartender

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 ($8): “From dancing gang members to award-hungry actors who may or not be able to sing, come see everything that makes a movie-musical special. Much like the recent Les Miserables film, we tamper with a classic musical to give it a modern, unforgettable twist,” written by Cindy Sideris, directed by Gusta Johnson, and starring Sarah Burton, John Trowbridge, Taylor Newhall, Cindy Sideris, Zak Sommerfield, and Taylor Zito at The PIT upstairs theatre: West Side Story Remade

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm-Midnight ($7 for the whole evening): In this 5-hour extravaganza, five of The Magnet’s singing improv groups make up a musical on the spot based on an audience suggestion, followed at 10:15 by a free show that lets audience members join in with a musical improv group to make up stories in song: Magnet Musical Megawatt

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Comics creators join super-hosts Alex Zalben, Justin Tyler, and Pete LePage in a lively & hilarious discussion about four-color pop culture at Fontana’s (105 Eldridge Street), with giveaways of comics and gift certificates (and if you can’t make it, watch in online here): Comic Book Club

[FREE] 7:00 pm: A stand-up who hosts the weekly comedy podcast You Know What Dude! tries out new material every night this week at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Week At the Creek: Robert Kelly

7:00 pm ($5): Kara Durrett & Meredith Hackman perform duo improv at The PIT downstairs lounge as PowerCouple

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:30 pm ($7.37 online using code BREAKOUT, plus 2-drink min.) The co-host of Married to Comedy podcast and Too Much Information on comicalradio.com, and who’s explained “I was kind of a tomboy growing up. Like, I had Barbies, but only because my Ninja Turtles needed bitches” (for dark bio video, please click here) headlining for one night only at the Carolines Comedy Club: Justy Dodge

7:30 pm-9:15 pm ($5): Long form improv known as The Harold from UCB Chelsea house groups Big Margaret, Graceland, and The Regulars at this first half of Harold Night

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm show ($8): This monthly show in which people tell stories revolving around songs tonight features David Crabb (co-host of Ask Me Stories), Jessica Delfino (enjoys singing songs about her vagina, as demonstrated by her CDs Dirty Folk Rock and I Wanna Be Famous; wildly popular animated short film I Wanna Be Famous; to get a feel for Jessica’s range and talent, please click here), Jordan Carlos (The Colbert Report, MTV’s Guy Code, VH1), and Brian Silliman at the Le Poisson Rouge’s The Gallery (158 Bleecker Street) hosted by Dana Ross: The Soundtrack Series

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Storytelling from Tate Donovan (actor in Argo, Deception, Damages, The OC, Space Camp, and more) and Leslie Meisel (30 Rock, HBO, sketch troupe Stone Cold Fox), plus Christopher McLindon (actor in Boardwalk Empire, Mohammed Ali’s Greatest Fight) runs game “Craigslist Ad or Casting Notice,” at Brooklyn’s Union Hall hosted by Katharine Heller (Naked in a Fishbowl): Tell the Bartender

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Colin Quinn (SNL, Comedy Central’s Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn, HBO, NBC, Broadway), Kurt Metzger (staff writer for Inside Amy Schumer; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show), and Robert Kelly (Louie, Comedy Central, Opie & Anthony) performing stand-up at the Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue) hosted by Ari Shaffir (Conan O’Brien, HBO’s Down and Dirty, Comedy Central, National Lampoon, hour-long set Passive Aggressive): Colin Quinn, Kurt Metzger, Ari Shaffir, and More

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): John Mulaney (one of the finest stand-ups in the country; writer/performer for Saturday Night Live; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, one hour special & CD/DVD New in Town, VH1’s Best Week Ever; for John’s great bit on Weekend Update, please click here), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), Lenny Marcus (David Letterman, MTV), Keith Alberstadt (David Letterman, VH1, contributor to SNL’s Weekend Update), Denise McCann (Comedy Central), and Kyle Dunnigan performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua (HBO’s Bad Boys of Comedy, Comedy Central): John Mulaney, Greer Barnes, Lenny Marcus, and More

[$] 8:00 pm ($15; no min.): Amanda Seales (VH1) performs a one-woman show about love mixing characters, music, and audience participation at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Amanda Seales: It’s Complicated

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced) performing at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by the brilliantly surreal and hilarious Joe Pera, plus Charles Gould and Dan Licata: Dan + Joe + Charles’ Show

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:30 pm (reserve your free spots by clicking here): John Flynn (rising star storyteller/actor; Saturday Night Live, The Nights of Our Lives, host of storytelling show Oh, Hey Guys!), Phil Hanley (Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central), Damien Lemon (MTV2’s Guy Code, Comedy Central), Jon Rineman, Guy Branum, and Tommy Pope performing stand-up at The Irish Exit (978 Second Avenue, off 52nd Street, in the back room) produced every Tuesday by Mark Normand, Matt Ruby, Gary Vider, and Sachi Ezura: Hot Soup

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Joe Machi (Jimmy Fallon), Selena Coppock (author of book The New Rules for Blondes, host of Connotation), and Lucas Connolly performing stand-up at this weekly show at Brooklyn’s The Alligator Lounge (600 Metropolitan Avenue) hosted by Sean Donnelly, Kevin McCaffrey, Robert Dean, and/or Steve O’Brien: Comedy at Alligator Lounge

9:15 pm-Midnight ($5): Long form improv known as The Harold from UCB Chelsea house groups GoodGirl, Sherlock & Cookies, and Bucky at this second half (continued from 7:30 pm) of Harold Night

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Brilliantly innovative comic Anthony Atamanuik (Death by Roo Roo, 30 Rock, Conan O’Brien, The Nights of Our Lives) plays oddball characters in a mix of sketch and improv. Tonight “we’re having a film festival where there are no submissions and the films will be shot, edited, and released during the festival! It might even be a lucky audience member’s big break…to get felt up on a casting couch.” In between will be tonight’s stand-up guests Jason Saenz (sketch troupe Onassis, co-host of Late Night Trash), Morgan Miller (improv group Detroit), and Keith Kingbay at the UCB East theatre: The Tony Show: Instant Film Festival

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($8): All-gal storytelling show in which “a bunch if ridiculously talented and sexy ladies make you laugh about their most awkward sexual experiences,” with tonight’s guests Ginny Leise, Jamie Leelo, Mallory Schlossberg, Carly Ann Filbin, and Emmy Harrington performing at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Natalie Wall: Awkward Sex…and the City

[FREE] 10:00 pm: Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, HBO, Showtime, MTV), Luis J. Gomez, Dave Smith, and other NYC stand-ups performing live on stage for this podcast show at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Legion of Skanks

Tuesday 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

[TOP PICK] [ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): In this delightful weekly open-mic show, each comic has 3 minutes to try out a character-based bit (e.g., for a solo show, sketch, or audition) at The PIT downstairs lounge, hosted by Jen Kwok (Comedy Central) and Keisha Zollar (Doppelganger): Imposter Open Mic

[ALMOST FREE] 6:00 pm ($1): Open-mic sketch that allows you to either perform a sketch with your own performers or bring in pages for the audience to perform at The PIT downstairs lounge, followed by feedback on your bit from PIT “sketch-perts:” Pens & Pencils

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

[FREE] 6:15 pm: Open mic for comedy of all types providing 2 minutes for each performer (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Jay Dean and Tynan DeLong: Two Nice Guys Open MIc

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 Tuesday 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 Ian Fidance: Comics Phoning It In

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: This weekly two-hour open-mic storytelling show allows each performer 8 minutes to tell a compelling and funny tale at Queens LIC’s The Creek downstairs lounge, with tonight’s guest co-host Michelle Onufrak and host Jake Hart: The Dump

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:15: Sign up at 9:30 pm for the opportunity to make up a musical on the spot with members of some of The Magnet’s finest singing improv groups: Magnet Musical Improv Mixer

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up at UCB East hosted by Boris Khaykin, John Trowbridge, and/or Katie East: Tuesday Night Open Mic

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): A breathtaking 40 comics are given 2 minutes each in this rapid-fire open-mic stand-up show at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted with wit and energy by Jay Welch: Bring It

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): An improv jam for students at all levels to work on their skills at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Elke Reid and David Frasure: Study Hall

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

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

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

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

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

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Friday 7/26/13

July 26, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Leslie Meisel

The hilarious Leslie Meisel…

Molly Lloyd

…and Molly Lloyd will start your Friday with laughs in the latest from Stone Cold Fox…

Julie Sharbutt

…while Julie Sharbutt performs a free improv duo show with The Daily Show’s Zhubin Parang in “Chairs”

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

[TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm & 9:00 pm & 11:00 pm (FREE TICKETS if you reserve in advance by calling (212) 260-2445 and mention HyReviews.com, but there’s still a 2-drink min. per person): TV & movie star Janeane Garofalo (possibly 9:00 pm only), Ted Alexandro (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, two Comedy Central Presents half-hour specials; frequently opens for Louis C.K.), Mike Yard (Comedy Central), and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

7:00 pm ($10): Freestyle rapping long-form improv troupe North Coast clobbered some of the best groups in NYC last year at UCBT’s Cage Match. Tonight it takes the stage for nearly an hour at The PIT upstairs theatre: North Coast

7:00 pm ($7): “It’s important to stay informed. That’s why we bring you all the news that happened this month, at the end of this month. Just your average news show, keeping you up to date with your world one month at a time” at The Magnet theatre written & performed by Jarret Berenstein: Current Events

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Jim Tews (“clawing his way to the middle for nearly a decade”) tries out material at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Jim Tews

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): Stone Cold Fox is the only sketch troupe (vs. improv troupe) to ever be honored with an ongoing spot on the prestigious UCB Chelsea weekend schedule. It’s earned this slot because its writers (who include Brandon Gulya and Silvija Ozols, each of whom briefly pop up on stage) are terrific, and its cast is superb: Brandon Scott Jones, Molly Lloyd, Leslie Meisel, Connor Ratliff, and Johnathan Fernandez. This all-new sketch show is pretty much hilarious from beginning to end. Part of the fun is the room the script gives Brandon Scott Jones and Molly Lloyd to shine as two of NYC’s finest comedic performers (if you’re in the biz, for goodness sakes hire them; they can do anything…). Plus Leslie Meisel almost steals the show when playing a tough broad ready to drag any guy into the sack. This is as great a sketch show as you’re likely to see this summer. If you feel like laughing, kick off your evening right with Stone Cold Fox: A Triumph… Channing Tatum is Electric!

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): Arthur Meyer (staff writer for Jimmy Fallon), Jeremy Bent (improv group Bucky), Dawn Luebbe (sketch group Onassis), Matt Starr (sketch group The Prom, First Lady), Alan Starzinski (improv group Sandino), and Stephanie Streisand (sketch show The 2017 Tony Awardz) performing character bits at UCB Chelsea hosted by Justin Tyler and Michael Hartney: Characters Welcome

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

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($10): Telly Savalas returns to life to entertain you and provide life guidance in this show that was a hit at FringeNYC 2011 and is enjoying a Friday night run this summer at the Soho Playhouse’s downstairs Huron Club. The script is at times very smart, especially in its choices of hilarious video clips and music tracks from the real Savalas…who, in his more intense moments, apparently rivaled William Shatner at his silliest. But even when Hunter Nelson’s writing isn’t consistent, actor Tom DiMenna—who is a professional comic with great timing and skill at engaging an audience—is likely to keep you entertained. Plus this latest version of the show brings in guest performers each week to keep things fresh: Telly Savalas Live and Friends

8:00 pm ($10): Jenny Jaffe (staff writer for MTV’s Nikki and Sara Live) hosts this variety show featuring Mike Blejer, Sean Ireland, Matt Rogers, Sudi Green, and Chelsea Davison at The PIT upstairs theatre: Camp Time

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Stand-up, sketch, videos, and more at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre with Jeffrey Joseph and hosts Ron Krasnow & Joel Walkowski: The Short Bus

[TOP PICK] 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

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): Cipha Sounds (Hot 97, Chappelle’s Show) thought it would be cool if a hip-hop star told tales and then improvisors made up scenes based on them. This monthly show is the result, with a “secret” music celebrity “mesmerizing the crowd with amazing stories and linguistic darts to spark the creativity of some of the best improvisers in NYC,” the latter being Chris Gethard, Anthony Atamanuik, Brandon Gardner, Phil Jackson, and Abra Tabak at the UCB East theatre: Take It Personal: The Hip-Hip Improv Show

[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

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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: The wonderful Julie Sharbutt (improv shows Gravid Water, Mystic Improv, The Scene, Birds) and Zhubin Parang (writer for The Daily Show; improv shows What I Did For Love, HUNK, The Scene) perform duo improv “exploring a world of deeply felt character relationships while sitting in chairs” at the The Walker Theatre (5th Floor of Tisch School of the Arts) (721 Broadway): Chairs

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

[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups take a comedic look at the world’s problems at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Tom Dillon: Love, Poverty, and War

[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

[$] 10:30 pm ($24 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Amy Schumer (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; star of Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Last Comic Standing, 30 Rock, great new DVD/CD Amy Schumer: Mostly Sex Stuff), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), Russ Meneve (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno), Sherrod Small (writer/performer on TBS’ Are We There Yet?, Comedy Central, VH1), and Dan Naturman (David Letterman, Jay Leno) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show): Amy Schumer, Greer Barnes, and More

10:30 pm ($10): Laura Willcox (Comedy Central, MTV), Rob Stern (G4TV), and Tomas Delgado performing at UCB East hosted by Brandon Scott Jones, D’Arcy Carden, Justin Tyler, Kelly Hudson, and/or Alden Ford: Gentrify

11:00 pm ($5): An all-gal longform improv group from Boston makes stuff up at The PIT downstairs lounge: WNBA

[TOP PICK] 11:30 pm ($5): A rotating cast drawing from over a dozen of the talented gal improvisors and sketch comics at The Magnet—including Artistic Director Megan Gray, Lauren Olson, Elena Fishbein, Kimberly Ferguson, and Beth Newell—aim to “give you a dark and twisted late night explosion:” The Clubhouse

Midnight ($5): A variety of oddball comedy acts from John Frusciante, Laura Wilcox, Brennan Mulligan, Jo Firestone, Kiki Tarkhan, and more at UCB East hosted by sketch duo Matt Dennie & Josh Sharp: Cool Shit / Weird Shit

Midnight ($5): Two sketch groups, Coker & Stratton vs. Brawler, competing for audience laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea hosted by sketch troupe Sidecar: Backyard Brawl

[TOP PICK] [$] 12:15 am ($20 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Amy Schumer (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; star of Comedy Central’s Inside Amy Schumer; Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Last Comic Standing, 30 Rock, great new DVD/CD Amy Schumer: Mostly Sex Stuff), 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), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam), and Wil Sylvince (Comedy Central, BET’s Comic View) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show): Amy Schumer, Dave Attell, and More

Friday Open Mics

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 hosts Erin Lennox and Eli Sairs: The Orphanage

[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 Nate Dern, Sarah Tollemache, and Paul Oddo: The Friday Night Hot Chicks Open Mic

[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

[FREE] Midnight: This show might not be much fun for audience members, but it’s an amazing opportunity if you want to perform sketch for free and with almost zero hurdles on the prestigious UCB Chelsea stage. Hosted by Maude troupe Fambly: Liquid Courage

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

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

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

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

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

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

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

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

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

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

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

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


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 2/8/12

February 8, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Ilana Glazer & Abbi Jacobson

Ilana Glazer & Abbi Jacobson debut their monthly show Broad City Live...

Leslie Meisel

...and Leslie Meisel performs at School 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:

[FREE] 6:00 pm to midnight: Six free hours of improvisation at The PIT’s 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

7:00 pm (no cover, 1-item min.): Amber Nelson (sketch troupe Thunder Gulch, co-host of Gutbucketand Mustache Party), Matt Ruby (co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here, blog Sandpaper Suit), Jay Nog (Paid or Pain), Seth Davis (visiting from Chicago), and Sue Funke (seen on NY1 recently) performing at Luca Lounge (222 Avenue B off 14th Street) with host Selena Coppock: Connotation

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

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5): For this double-bill at UCB East, genius improvisors Gavin Speiller ofDeath By Roo Roo, Ben Rodgers of The Curfew, and Jonathan Gabrus of The Law Firm) perform asOutlook of the Poet; and then Nicole Byer, Sasheer Zamata, and Keisha Zollar are the fiercely energetic & entertaining all-gal improv troupe Doppelganger

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:30 pm ($20 [vs. $25] online or at the box office using discount code BOOK): Telly Savalas returns to life to entertain you and provide life guidance in this 50-minute show that was a hit at FringeNYC 2011 and is now enjoying an open-ended Friday night run at the Soho Playhouse’s downstairs Huron Club. The script is at times very smart, especially in its choices of hilarious video clips and music tracks from the real Savalas…who, in his more intense moments, apparently rivaled William Shatner at his silliest. But even when Hunter Nelson’s writing isn’t consistent, actor Tom DiMenna—who is a professional comic with great timing and skill at engaging an audience—will keep you entertained: Who Loves You, Baby?

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): A top group of improvisors including Ryan Karels, Morgan Grace Jarrett, and Brandon Scott Jones “will take your stories of the tragic and depraved and scatter them into laughter” by making up scenes on the spot at UCB ChelseaGrandma’s Ashes

[FREE—plus FREE PIZZA for first 30 people, from Artichoke Pizza!] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Jena Friedman (wry dark comedy stand-up; staff writer for David Letterman), Jared Freid, Alison Leiby, and Jason Burke performing at the East Village’s Beauty Bar with hosts Negin Farsad, Amy Albert, and Beth McGregor for their free weekly show Comedy School Dropout

[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): At UCB East, Neil Casey & Anthony Atamanuik, both genius members ofDeath by Roo Roo, perform the jaw-dropping feat of making up an entire feature film as The Two-Man Movie

[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 now it’s debuting as a live monthly show at UCB Chelsea! Tonight’s theme is Get Drunk With Broad City, with new videos, stand-up, character pieces, and “a delicately crafted hour of fun:” Broad City Live

[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: 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 lineup includes Leslie Meisel and Matt Fisher; for the complete list, 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: 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

[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

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

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