NYC Top Comedy Choices for Saturday 12/31/16

December 31, 2016

New Year's EveHappy (almost) New Year! Ring in 2017 with laughs at the Cornelia Street Cafe, QED, The PIT, The Stand, and/or Comedy Cellar

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

[TOP PICK] [$] 6:00 pm ($25, which includes champagne; reservations highly recommended by calling 212.989.9319): Four funny people tell amazing stories. Three of the tales are absolutely true…but one of them is a pack of lies. The audience then asks questions to try and identify the fibber—and everyone who chooses correctly gets a free t-shirt! This New Year’s Eve’s yarn-spinners are Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic/pianist; WNYC, Sirius XM, Huffington Post, Internet Action Force, host of Sideshow Goshko), Michaela Murphy (The New Yorker, Moth Radio Hour), Gastor Almonte (Comedy Central), and Ed Gavagan (TED Talks, Moth Grandslam champion, WNYC’s Moth Radio Hour). Come to the West Village’s Cornelia Street Cafe (29 Cornelia Street) and let these storytellers and host Andy Christie (The New York Times, NPR, Moth GrandSlam champion, exceptionally nice guy) attempt to mislead you at The Liar Show

[TOP PICK] 6:30 pm ($20; no min.): Laurie Kilmartin (dynamite stand-up; writer for Conan O’Brien; finalist on Last Comic Standing; Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central, VH1), Jim Florentine (Comedy Central, MTV), Adrienne Iapalucci (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, VH1), Ron Bennington (host of radio shows Bennington and Unmasked), Derek Gaines (host of MTV’s Broke A$$ Game Show), and Yannis Pappas (Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1) performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue, off 20th Street): The Stand Early New Year’s Eve

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($10): Improv group Big Black Car 2 makes up scenes at The PIT upstairs theatre: BBC2

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm-9:00 or 10:00 pm-11:30 pm ($20 for show alone; $30 for show & food at 7:30; $40 for show & food at 10:00): Aparna Nancherla (one of the very finest stand-ups in the country; former writer for Seth Meyers; Conan O’Brien, @Midnight, Comedy Central Half Hour, comedy album Just Putting It Out There; opens for Tig Notaro; hosts top weekly NYC stand-up show Whiplash), Leah Bonnema (VH1, IFC’s Comedy Drop, WeTV’s Cinematherapy, Logo, Opie & Anthony’s Virus Channel), Rob Paravonian (Comedy Central, VH1; to watch his hit video Pachelbel Rant, which has been viewed by over 13 million people on YouTube, please click here), and Anthony DeVito (Adam Devine’s House Party, This American Life) ring in your new year with stand-up at Astoria Queens’ QED: A Place to Show & Tell (27-16 23rd Avenue) hosted by Charles McBee Rory Scholl: QED’s New Year’s Spectacular

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm, 8:15 pm, 10:15 pm, and 10:30 pm ($40 cover for early shows, $80 cover for late shows, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Some of the finest stand-ups in the country spread among 8:00 pm & 10:15 shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) and 8:15 pm & 10:30 pm shows at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar New Year’s Eve

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Superb improvisors—including Tracy Mull (host of The Island), Langston Belton (improv groups Grounds for Divorce, G.U.S., Fun Young Guys), and Chris Booth (sketch group City Hall, National Geographic’s Brain Games)—play a bunch of short improv games to ring in the new year at The PIT downstairs lounge: New Year’s Eve Short Form Show

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): Improvisors make up scenes like it’s their last chance to perform “because the world is ending” at The PIT upstairs theatre: End of the World Jam

12:45 am ($20; no min.): Artie Lange (former cast member of MAD TV and The Howard Stern Show; former host of The Artie Lange Show; host of The Artie Quitter Podcast), Yannis Pappas (Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1), and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue, off 20th Street): The Stand New Year’s Eve After-Party

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

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

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

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

The PIT Striker (Upstairs) Theatre (123 East 24th Street): 88-seater; a top venue that’s a powerful rival of UCB, and often surpasses UCB when blending comedy with music and/or theatricality; shows free-$20

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

For a desktop version of this site that includes more material—such as NYC theatre discounts and FringeNYC coverage—please click here.

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

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NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 12/31/14

December 31, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

New Years Eve

Happy (almost) New Year! Ring in 2015 with laughs at one or more of the comedy venues below.

Tonight’s recommendations for the best in New York City comedy (in chronological order, with top picks noted and shows over $15 marked with $) include:

[TOP PICK] [$] 6:00 pm ($25, which includes a glass of champagne—and, if you guess right, a t-shirt; this is probably sold out, but you can call (212) 989-9319 and/or arrive early to get on a waiting list, because some reservations will be no-shows): Four funny people tell amazing stories. Three of the tales are absolutely true…but one of them is a pack of lies. The audience then asks questions to try and identify the fibber—and everyone who does gets a free t-shirt! This evening’s yarn-spinners are Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Sirius XM, Huffington Post, host of Sideshow Goshko), Ed Gavagan (Moth Radio Hour), Richard Greene (Forbes, Redbook), and Martin Dockery (five-time Moth GrandSlam finalist). Come to the West Village’s Cornelia Street Cafe (29 Cornelia Street) and let host Andy Christie (The New York Times, NPR, Moth GrandSlam champion, exceptionally nice guy) attempt to mislead you on New Year’s Eve at The Liar Show

[FREE] 6:00 pm-midnight: Six free hours of improvisation at The PIT upstairs theatre: Super Free Wednesday

[TOP PICK] [$] 6:30 pm ($30 plus 2-drink min.): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds and very finest stand-ups in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Mark Normand (hilarious red-hot rising star; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, Inside Amy Schumer, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever; comedy album Still Got It), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), Caroline Rhea (Sabrina the Teenage Witch, The Caroline Rhea Show, Curb Your Enthusiasm, Comedy Central), and Jared Fried performing stand-up at the Stand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): Stand Up NY New Year’s Eve: Judah Friedlander, Mark Normand, Greer Barnes, Caroline Rhea, and More

[$] 6:30 pm ($25; no min.): Dan St. Germain (enormously likeable and rapidly rising star who has several TV shows in the works; Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half-Hour Special, The Electric Company, MTV, VH1), Adrienne Iapalucci (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, VH1), Yannis Pappas (Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1), Paul Virzi, and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club at 239 Third Avenue & 20th Street. (Please note The Stand has two other shows tonight, at 8:30 pm and 10:30 pm, but those are both sold out): The Stand’s Early NYE: Dan St. Germain, Adrienne Iapalucci, and More

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm & 8:30 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, Jordan Rock (Comedy Central), and more performing at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm ($38.25 plus 2-drink min.) and 10:00 pm ($92.75 plus 2-drink min.): Mark Normand (hilarious red-hot rising star; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, Inside Amy Schumer, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever; comedy album Still Got It), Michelle Wolf (rising star; staff writer for and performer on Seth Meyers; MTV’s Girl Code, IFC), Dan Soder (smart, edgy rising star; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, Inside Amy Schumer, MTV’s Guy Code and Guy Court, VH1), Joe List (HBO, David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), Gary Vider (fun deadpan stand-up; for great Conan O’Brien set, please click here; for more jokes, please click here), and Ricky Velez performing at the Carolines Comedy Club: Carolines New Years Eve: Mark Normand, Michelle Wolf, Dan Soder, Joe List, and More

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($25 plus 2-drink min.) and 10:30 pm ($60 plus 2-drink min.): Terrific stand-up Pete Correale (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Comedy Central one-hour special) headlines at the Gotham Comedy Club: Gotham’s New Year’s Eve with Pete Correale

[$] 8:00 pm ($40 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Gary Gulman (razor-sharp wordsmith; David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-log special), Gregg Rogell (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Louie, Comedy Central), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), Lenny Marcus (David Letterman, MTV), Jessica Kirson (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, HBO, Showtime, Bravo, VH1, Logo one-woman show My Cookie’s Gone), Zainab Johnson (Arsenio Hall, Last Comic Standing, BET’s Comic View), and Modi (Comedy Central) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show): Comedy Cellar New Years Eve: Gary Gulman, Gregg Rogell, Greer Barnes, Lenny Marcus, Jessica Kirson, and More

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Murderfist (NYC’s fearless heavy metal version of a sketch troupe; winner of the 2010 ECNY Award) performs and hosts what’s likely to be an off-the-wall comedy extravaganza at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: Murderfist’s New Year

[$] 9:00 pm ($30; includes open buffet and glass of champagne): NYC stand-ups David Lester, Evan Jones, Kerry Coddett, Stephen Bolles, and Joanna Briley performing at People’s Republic of Brooklyn (247 Smith Street) hosted by Alex Babbitt & Elsa Waithe and followed by partying through 2:00 am: New Year’s Eve Comedy Jam

[FREE; plus free champagne at midnight!] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups (not announced) hosted by Nimesh Patel (Comedy Central) at Brooklyn’s Bar Matchless back room (557 Manhattan Avenue, near the G subway’s Nassau Avenue stop): Broken Comedy

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:30 pm ($80 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Strong line-up of Dave Attell (one of the most respected stand-ups in the biz; star of Comedy Central’s Comedy Underground, Showtime’s Dave’s Old Porn, Comedy Central’s Insomniac, and two Comedy Central specials; HBO, David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, The Daily Show), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Marina Franklin (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Chappelle’s Show, VH1), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), Dov Davidoff (Jay Leno, Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central Presents, Chappelle’s Show, Chelsea Lately, Whitney, The League), Jessica Kirson (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, HBO, Showtime, Bravo, VH1, Logo one-woman show My Cookie’s Gone), Wil Sylvince (Comedy Central, BET’s Comic View), and Kevin Brennan performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show): Comedy Cellar New Years Eve: Dave Attell, Gary Gulman, Greer Barnes, Marina Franklin, and More

Midnight ($13.41 in advance online—please arrive by 11:45 pm for guaranteed seat): NYC comics perform stand-up in the nude (audience members can choose to be clothed or naked) at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre: The Naked Show

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

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

 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 Tuesday 12/31/13

December 31, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

New Year's Eve

Happy (almost) New Year! Ring in 2014 with laughs at one or more of the comedy venues below.

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

[TOP PICK] [$] 6:00 pm ($25, which includes a glass of champagne—and, if you guess right, a t-shirt; this is SOLD OUT, but you can call (212) 989-9319 and/or arrive early to get on a waiting list, because some reservations will be no-shows): Four funny people tell amazing stories. Three of the tales are absolutely true…but one of them is a pack of lies. The audience then asks questions to try and identify the fibber—and everyone who does gets a free t-shirt! This evening’s yarn-spinners are Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Sirius XM, Huffington Post, host of Sideshow Goshko), Aaron Wolf (Moth GrandSlam Champion), Tracy Rowland (TV writer/editor), and Martin Dockery (five-time Moth GrandSlam finalist). Come to the West Village’s Cornelia Street Cafe (29 Cornelia Street) and let host Andy Christie (The New York Times, NPR, Moth GrandSlam champion, exceptionally nice guy) attempt to mislead you on New Year’s Eve at The Liar Show

[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

[$] 6:45 pm ($20; no min.): Adrienne Iapalucci (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing, VH1), Godfrey (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, 30 Rock, VH1; films Zoolander, Original Gangsters, Soul Plane; 7 Up Yours ads), Pete Davidson (MTV’s Guy Code), Derek Gaines, and Monroe Martin performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club at 239 Third Avenue & 20th Street. (Please note The Stand has two other shows tonight, at 8:30 and 10:30, but those are both sold out): Adrienne Iapalucci, Godfrey, and More

[$] 8:00 pm ($40 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Gregg Rogell (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Louie, Comedy Central), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), Lenny Marcus (David Letterman, MTV), Lynne Koplitz (Joan Know’s Best, IFC’s Z Rock, host of WB’s Life & Style), Dan Naturman (David Letterman, Jay Leno), and Modi (Comedy Central) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show): Gregg Rogell, Greer Barnes, Lenny Marcus, and More

[$] 8:00 pm & 10:30 pm ($25 for 8:00 pm, $60 for 10:30 pm, plus 2-drink min.): Stand-ups Roy Wood Jr., Lenny Marcus, and Angelo Lozada perform at the Gotham Comedy Club: New Year’s Eve with Roy Wood Jr.

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Some of the finest alternative comics in NYC perform at this free New Year’s Eve show, featuring Joe Pera (hilarious deadpan Andy Kaufman-like stand-up; one time I saw Joe sing beautifully and then smash three dozen plates to pieces; another time he ended his set by slicing milk; and when headlining at Carolines he had a first date on stage with a random member of the audience; for Joe’s latest Kaufman awards submissions, please click here and here), Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central’s The Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award), Murderfist (NYC’s fearless heavy metal version of a sketch troupe; winner of the 2010 ECNY Award), and more at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Abigoliah Schamaun (and followed at midnight by an oddball carny sideshow in which Abigoliah will probably eat a light bulb): Alternative New Year’s

[$] 9:00 pm ($20): Harry Terjanian (Sirius XM Radio, 2013 Andy Kaufman Award winner), Selena Coppock (author of book The New Rules for Blondes, host of Connotation), Sam Grittner, Todd Mole, and more performing stand-up at People’s Republic of Brooklyn (247 Smith Street) hosted by Tim Ellis & Mo Fathelbab and followed by partying through 2:00 am: Party Manifesto New Year’s Eve Comedy Bash

[$] 10:00 pm ($80 plus 2-item food/drink min.): 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), Nick Griffin (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), Marina Franklin (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Chappelle’s Show, VH1), 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), Lynne Koplitz (Joan Know’s Best, IFC’s Z Rock, host of WB’s Life & Style), Rick Crom (Broadway’s Urinetown and Footloose, Chappelle’s Show), William Stephenson (FX’s Louie, The Chris Rock Show), and Ardie Fuqua (HBO’s Bad Boys of Comedy, Comedy Central) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show): Dave Attell, Nick Griffin, Greer Barnes, Marina Franklin, and More

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:30 pm ($45, plus 2-drink 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), Rich Vos (stand-up star on two seasons of Last Comic Standing and on Tough Crowd with Colin Quinn; Comedy Central Presents; Opie & Anthony radio show), and Bonnie McFarlane (HBO, David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central) performing stand-up at the Stand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): New Year’s Eve with Judah Friedlander, Rich Vos, and Bonnie McFarlane

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.