NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 6/11/14

June 11, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

TV Alert: John Oliver is on Seth Meyers;
Christopher Walken is on David Letterman;
Maria Bamford and Jackie Kashian are on @midnight

Nick Vatterott

Nick Vatterott practices a headlining set for his upcoming comedy album taping at The Creek

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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 6:30 pm: Comedic storytelling and/or humor readings from Jim O’Grady (The New York Times, NPR’s This American Life, WNYC Radio, Moth GrandSlam Champion), Diana Spechler (author of Who By Fire and Skinny), Lisa Kirchner (author of Hello American Lady Creature), and Colin Nissan (The Paris Review, McSweeney’s) performing at McNally Jackson Books (52 Prince Street) hosted by Andy Ross: Real Characters

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 7:00 pm: Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award) performs a headlining set that will soon be a comedy album published by Comedy Central at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Nick Vatterott Practicing for His Comedy Album

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

7:00 pm to 12:30 am ($7 for the entire evening): Five and a half hours of improv from eight groups, plus a free improv jam at 11:30, at The Magnet theatre: Magnet Megawatt

[$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:30 pm ($5.50 online using code MATTEO, plus 2-drink min.) Joe Pera (hilarious and genius deadpan stand-up; Adult Swim; for a very special one-minute set at Carolines, please click here; for Joe’s latest Kaufman awards submissions, please click here and here), Mike Recine (Conan O’Brien), and Ricky Velez (MTV) performing stand-up and/or being interviewed by host Matteo Lane at the Carolines Comedy Club: In Good Spirits With Matteo Lane

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 Witch and Buchanan: Lloyd Night

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, four attractive young women—including rising star Abby Holland (VH1’s Best Night Ever, musical improv groups Dagger, Aquarius, and Veal)—perform a sketch show that’s inconsistent but entertaining overall for an initial effort, directed by the brilliant Ellena Chmielewski: Fuck Judy Towers

…and in the other half of this double-bill, sharp comic Alan Starzinski (Sandino, Fat Penguin) performs a clever one-man sketch show in which he plays characters ranging from Aquaman to Gary Busey to the rescue pilot at the end of Jurassic Park at the UCB Chelsea theatre: Guys You Love to Hate

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: A hodgepodge of comedy hosted by the wonderful and quick-witted Amanda Duarte (young), with The O’Debra Twins (Tanya O’Debra & Diane O’Debra, who sing, perform sketch and acrobats, and lord knows what else) John Early (Ars Nova’s Showgasm), Isaac Oliver, Raquel Cion, and more performing at Judson Memorial Church (239 Thompson Street): Dead Darlings

[FREE; plus FREE BACON] 8:00 pm: Dan Soder (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1; for set about being a hypochondriatic drug user, please click here), Jon Fisch (David Letterman, Comedy Central, Last Comic Standing, VH1), Selena Coppock (author of book The New Rules for Blondes, host of Connotation), Gibran Saleem (MTV), Anthony Kapfer, Adam Mamawala, Anthony P. DeVito, and Julia Solomon performing stand-up at this show that provides you with both free comedy and free bacon at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Kevin Berrey and/or Farah Brook: Free Bacon

 [FREE] 8:00 pm: Brooke Van Poppelen (brilliant writer, stand-up, and storyteller; writer and/or producer for MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Failosophy, and Nikki & Sara Show; trutV, TLC, co-host of Dive Comedy), Josh Gondelman (staff writer for HBO’s Last Week With John Oliver), Hari Kondabolu (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, Totally Biased), Chris Distefano (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV2’s Guy Code), Vicky Kuperman, Josh Rosen, and Erik Bransteen performing stand-up at the Producer’s Club (358 West 44th Street) produced by Henry Cruz & Keith Fuerstenberg, and hosted tonight by Monica Vida: Train Wreck Stand-Up

[$] 8:00 pm, 9:45 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Dave Attell, Kevin Brennan, and Dov Davidoff at the 9:45 show, and Nikki Glaser, Greer Barnes, Ryan Hamilton, and Big Jay Oakerson at the 11:30 show, with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Wednesday

[TOP PICK] 9:00 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] 9:00 pm: Jared Logan (rising star; Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing, CNN, TBS), Hari Kondabolu (David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Presents, Totally Biased), Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents), Greg Warren (Comedy Central Presents), Daniel Simonsen (BBC’s House of Fools), Meghan Hanley, Jeff Cerulli, and Andy Fiori performing at this free weekly stand-up show at Lucky Jack’s Pub (129 Orchard Street) produced by Kyle Fincham, Lance Weiss, and Brendon Fitzgibbons: Gandhi, Is That You?

9:15 pm ($8): Sketch comedy from groups The Talent and UniSex, character sketch from Adam Hamway and Sharon Jamilkowski, music from Positive Feedback and Squirm & Germ, and more at Under St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue) hosted by Jenn Dodd: June Sketch Block

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): 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, comedy CDs Small, Dork, and Handsome. Vegan Mind Meld, and Meat Robot), Rob Cantrell (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, HBO, VHI, FX’s Totally Biased, documentary Metaphysical Graffiti, High Times), and Myka Fox performing stand-up at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Griffin Newman and/or Andrew Tavin: The Awooga Comedy Hour

9:30 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, scenes from a nautical sketch group BOAT and a one-man show from Christian Capozzoli: Nutso Facto

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($10 online using discount code CREEPS; no min.): Cringe stand-up from Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Mark Normand (hilarious red-hot rising star, and my pick to win this season’s Last Comic Standing; Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, Inside Amy Schumer, VH1’s Best Week Ever; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Pat Dixon (Comedy Central Presents, FOX, VH1, E!), Chris Distefano (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV2’s Guy Code), and Aaron Berg (TV series 24 Hour Rental, documentary A Universal Language) performing at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street) hosted by Aaron Berg: The Creeps of Comedy: Judah Friedlander, Mark Normand, Big Jay Oakerson, and More

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5): Leslie Meisel & Kate Riley chose UCB comics to write sketches for the opposite sex, then cast and directed the scripts. Tonight’s show is the result of this fun experiment at the UCB East theatre: He Said, She Said: A Sketch Show

[FREE] 10:00 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] 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. (Tonight’s lineup includes Hari Kondabolu 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

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

5:30 pm ($3): Walk-in open mic providing each performer 5 minutes (or more, depending on turnout) at This Theater (154 West 29th Street): The Worm Open Mic

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

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

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

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

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

10:30 pm ($3): Biweekly open mic stand-up, with each comic getting an unusually long 6-10 minutes, at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by James III & Jamie LeeLo: Hump Day

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

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

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

5:30 pm ($3): Walk-in open mic providing each performer 5 minutes (or more, depending on turnout) at This Theater (154 West 29th Street): Night Owl Open Mic

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Best NYC Stand-Up Comedy Clubs

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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 Tuesday 3/11/14

March 11, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

New Kroll Show at 10:30 pm on Comedy Central; if you missed
Abbi & Ilana on last night’s Seth Meyers, click here (35 min. in)

My Wife Hates Me

Married stand-up couple Rich Vos & Bonnie McFarlane tape their podcast live at the Village Underground: My Wife Hates Me

Nick Vatterott

…and Nick Vatterott demonstrates his affable hosting skills at stand-up showcase Last Week Was Packed

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-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] 7:00 pm ($5): Darcy Burke performs a one-woman show in which she “applies the principles of Joseph Campbell’s The Power of Myth to the 1987 Denver Broncos” at The PIT downstairs lounge: The Drive: Power of Myth

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($10): Improv troupe Punctual Drunks interviews an audience member about his or her favorite fairy tale, and then picks up the story where it left off so you can find out how it really ended, at The PIT downstairs lounge: Punctual Drunks & Friends

[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

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm ($10 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Married stand-up couple 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) perform a taping of their podcast live on stage at the Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): My Wife Hates Me—Live Podcast

7:30 pm-9:15 pm ($5): Long form improv known as The Harold from UCB Chelsea house groups –Greg, Higgins, and Grammer at this first half of Harold Night

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($5 online using discount code NORTHERN; no min.): TV & movie star Janeane Garofalo, Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Jon Fisch (David Letterman, Comedy Central, Last Comic Standing, VH1), Carmen Lynch (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing finalist, Comedy Central), and Kyle Grooms performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street) hosted by Ray Devito & Josh Carter: Northern Discomfort: Janeane Garofalo, Gary Gulman, Jon Fisch, Carmen Lynch, and More

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Kevin Meaney (Saturday Night Live, 30 Rock, HBO, Comedy Central, Adult Swim), Gary Gulman (David Letterman, Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Tourgasm, Comedy Central hour-long special), Gregg Rogell (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Louie, Comedy Central), Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), Lynne Koplitz (Joan Know’s Best, IFC’s Z Rock, host of WB’s Life & Style), 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 Ardie Fuqua (HBO’s Bad Boys of Comedy, Comedy Central): Kevin Meaney, Gary Gulman, Gregg Rogell, and More

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award) and friends perform a mix of stand-up and sketch at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City: Last Week Was Packed

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

8:00 pm ($10): A sketch comedy group that includes Keisha Zollar (Doppelganger) at The PIT upstairs theatre: Slap Fight

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Jeff Simmermon, Becky Yamamoto, Negin Farsad, Sam Grittner, Lynn Bixenspan, Matt Donaher, and Will Miles performing stand-up for this free weekly show at People’s Republic of Brooklyn (247 Smith Street) hosted by Tim Ellis & Mo Fathelbab: Manifesto

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:30 pm (reserve your free spots by clicking here): Typically superb stand-ups (not yet announced) performing 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

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($7): Typically superb comics (not yet announced) performing at The Slipper Room (167 Orchard Street) hosted by Seth Herzog (Jimmy Fallon long-time staff comic, Comedy Central, VH1, co-host of Nat Geo’s Duck Quakes Don’t Echo): Sweet

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups (typically announced by 1:00 pm; for an update, please click here) performing 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 Namaste, Graceland, and The Regulars at this second half (continued from 7:30 pm) of Harold Night

9:30 pm ($5): “People from all across America have submitted ideas for the wackiest and most expensive game shows on earth. At this showcase we’ll try out three lucky shows with the help and participation of our gracious live audience. After we’ve attempted to recreate all three, audience members get the chance to vote on which idea gets to go straight to TV” at UCB East hosted by Jo Firestone (Punderdome 3000): The Incredible Game Show Showcase

9:30 pm ($5): Improvisors play outside their comfort zones at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Dan Pozmanter: Fear Corner

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($5; no min.): A super-affordable stand-up club show, featuring stars Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Mark DeMayo (retired NYC cop with great stories), Jesse Joyce, and Danny Palmer performing at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): $5 Funnies: Judah Friedlander, Mark DeMayo, Jesse Joyce, and More

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/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), Ali Wong (fearless, razor-sharp, hilarious comedy dynamo; Jay Leno, Comedy Central, FOX, NBC’s Are You There Chelsea?, film Savages), Greer Barnes (David Letterman, Chappelle’s Show, For the Love of the Game), Carmen Lynch (David Letterman, Last Comic Standing finalist, Comedy Central), 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), Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), Godfrey (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, 30 Rock, VH1; films Zoolander, Original Gangsters, Soul Plane), and Ralph Harris (Jay Leno, Comedy Central Presents, Comedy Central Half Hour, Dream Girls, Evan Almighty) 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): Judah Friedlander, Ali Wong, Greer Barnes, and More

[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups each tell precisely three jokes at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Seth Cockfield: Three Joke Mafia

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 Green Room, 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 downstairs lounge hosted by Jay Dean and Tynan DeLong: Two Nice Guys Open MIc

[FREE] 6:30 pm: Weekly stand-up open mic (with sign-up starting at 6:00) at People’s Republic of Brooklyn (247 Smith Street) hosted by Dustin Drury: This Is Happening 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 hosted by Jake Hart with guest co-host TBA: 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 The Magnet improv group Aquarius: 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.)

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

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

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

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


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Wednesday 2/6/13

February 6, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.
Amy Schumer’s just-released DVD Mostly Sex Stuff is great. Buy it here.

Nick Vatterott and Frank Conniff

Nick Vatterott and Frank “MST3K” Conniff perform stand-up at Hot Soup…

Cyndi Freeman and Ellena Chmielewski

…Cyndi Freeman performs burlesque at the storytelling & sideshow extravaganza And I Am Not Lying; delightful comic Ellena Chmielewski wrote & directs a 30 minute romantic comedy: Standards & Practices…

Nick Kroll 20

Nick Kroll

…and at 10:30 on Comedy Central is a new episode of the finest sketch comedy series to grace TV in years: Kroll Show

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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: 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 3 minutes per comic at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Max Corbel & Benel Germosen: Cracking It

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

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

7:00 pm ($5): “Christine Holt and Mary Guiteras both worked at The Magician, a bar in NYC’s Lower East Side. It was there that they realized they loved being oddballs. Sometimes they’d get in trouble because they’d be so busy being odd, they’d forget about their customers. Now they do it on stage,” and are tonight joined by Erin Lennox and Margaret Lyons for this show mixing stand-up, storytelling, and improv at The PIT downstairs lounge: Bartenders: Ladies’ Night

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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] Seating at 8:30, show at 9:00 pm (RSVP to confirm your spot at FreeComedyWednesdays@gmail.com): Frank Conniff (TV’s Frank on Mystery Science Theater 3000; Cinematic Titanic), Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central’s The Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award), Emily Heller (Comedy Central; staff writer for Rooftop Comedy; for ruminations on pregnancy, please click here), Joe List (HBO, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central), and more performing stand-up at Ella (9 Avenue A) produced by Mark Normand, Matt Ruby, Gary Vider, and Sachi Ezura: Hot Soup

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Wonderful improvisor Ellena Chmielewski co-wrote and directed this comedy mini-play about modern romance at UCB Chelsea co-written & co-starring John Zachary Townsend (and which, barring last-minute snags, I’ll finally be attending tonight): Standards & Practices

…and in the other half of this sketch comedy double-bill, “Four traveling salespeople whose car broke down in your suburban neighborhood. They’ve come knocking… but what are your neighbors doing behind those doors?! The Partners are determined to find out, and sell some patented Ice Mix™ in the process:” Former Business Partners: Everything Must Go

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Nick DiPaolo (star stand-up, with numerous appearances on David Letterman, Jay Leno, Louie; Emmy-nominated comedy writer, talk show host), Tom Papa (host of Jerry Seinfeld-produced NBC comedy The Marriage Ref; numerous appearances on David Letterman, Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno; three Comedy Central specials), Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show), Robert Kelly (Louie, Comedy Central, Opie & Anthony), and Jeff Lamp (Jay Leno) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua: Nick DiPaolo, Tom Papa, 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 ($10 at the door or $11.80 in advance online): Storytelling, stand-up, and carny join forces to bring the blog And I Am Not Lying to life on stage, hosted by Jeff Simmermon (NPR’s This American Life, The Moth), and tonight featuring storytelling by Jeff, Brad Lawrence (Moth GrandSlam Champion, FringeNYC, co-host of The Standard Issues), and Daisy Rosario; stand-up by Sasheer Zamata (highly charming, innovative rising star; host of UCBT’s School Night, member of red-hot improv troupe Doppelganger, sketch troupe The Prom, and Harold Night troupe Bucky); sideshow antics by Abigoliah Schamaun; and burlesque by Cherry Pitz and Magdalena Fox, all at Under St. Marks (94 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue): And I Am Not Lying

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Al Jackson (Comedy Central Presents, Last Comic Standing, John Oliver’s NY Stand-Up, Upload with Shaq, MTV), Selena Coppock (author of upcoming book The New Rules for Blondes), Victor Varnado (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central, NBC’s My Name is Earl, Adult Swim, Comedy Central’s The Awkward Comedy Show; films Pluto Nash, End of Days, A Guy Thing), Neil Constantine, Joe Larsonm and Monroe Martin performing stand-up 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?

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($5): Superb improvisors including Charlie Todd, John Murray, and John Frusciante “gather around the couch to turn each others’ bizarre tales and armchair philosophies into an evening of improv comedy. It’s like hanging out with your friends, except that your friends are really funny and need to suddenly turn their stories into improv scenes” at the UCB Chelsea theatre: The Living Room

[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 fighting) at UCB East performing as duo The Brothers Hines

[$] 9:45 pm ($14 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Jessica Kirson (Jay Leno, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, HBO, Showtime, Bravo, VH1, Logo one-woman show My Cookie’s Gone), Sherri Shepherd (co-host of The View), Gregg Rogell (Conan O’Brien, Jay Leno, Louie, Comedy Central), Godfrey (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, 30 Rock, VH1; films Zoolander, Original Gangsters, Soul Plane; 7 Up Yours ads), and Sherrod Small (writer/performer on TBS’ Are We There Yet?, Comedy Central, VH1), performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua: Jessica Kirson, Sherri Shepherd, and More

[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

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

10:00 pm ($5): Two-person improv scenes from Haldane McFall & Brad Stuart, Elke Reid & Giovanni Vargas, and more at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Donna Lobello and tonight’s guest partner Meredith Hackman: I Trust (Two-Prov)

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: The wonderful Sasheer Zamata (Doppelganger) hosts as many as a dozen guests packed into 75 minutes performing stand-up, improv, sketch, and occasionally acts that defy categorization. The level of talent can vary wildly, but for some (like me), that’s part of the laid-back fun; and this is often one of the most amazing comedy shows in town. (Tonight’s scheduled guests include Katey Healy-Wurzburg, Adam Newman, and Luke Thayer; 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: Open-mic stand-up running until 1:00 am, with time divided evenly between performers (up to five minutes), at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City with host Rob Stern: Bucket ‘O Buckets

[FREE] 11:00 pm: Your opportunity to perform on the stage of UCB East with improv veterans, hosted by UCBT Harold Night house troupe Grandma’s Ashes: The Improv Jam

[TOP PICK] [$] 11:30 pm ($10 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Uncensored stand-up from Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, HBO, Showtime, MTV), Jena Friedman (wry dark comedy stand-up and rising star; producer for The Daily Show, former staff writer for David Letterman, host of Entertaining the Bartender), Kurt Metzger (Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Presents, Ugly Americans), Chris Distefano (Comedy Central, MTV2’s Guy Code), and Mike Vecchione (Last Comic Standing, Howard Stern) performing at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by Ardie Fuqua: The Nasty Show: Big Jay Oakerson, Jena Friedman, Kurt Metzger, and More

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