NYC Top Comedy Choices for Sunday 5/11/14

May 11, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

The Improvised Shakespeare Company

…plus the smartest & funniest comedy improv troupe in the world returns for a 3-night run: The Improvised Shakespeare Company

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] 5:00 pm ($5; SOLD OUT of seats, but you can probably get in if you show up early and don’t mind standing): Superb comics including Jena Friedman, Bridgett Everett, Michelle Buteau, and host Julie Klausner perform at UCB Chelsea for the consideration of William Morris Endeavor agents—and you: WME NY Comedy Showcase

[FREE] 5:00 pm: A mix of longform, shortform, and musical improv from five groups, typically including Mishmosh, at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Michael Venzor: The Long and Short of It

6:00 pm ($5): For Mother’s Day, four of The Magnet’s top improvisors—Jon Bander, Hannah Chase, Andy Moskowitz, and Matt Antonucci—make up scenes with their real-life moms at this Mother’s Day Show

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm & 9:30 pm ($26.87 online or $25 at the door with discount code MAY FB; please note the 7:00 pm show has SOLD OUT, but the theatre can often squeeze people in if you’re okay with standing): Genius improvisors from Chicago—including Thomas Middleditch (star of HBO’s Silicon Valley)—delivering one of the funniest shows you’ll ever see by making up a play on the spot using the language and themes of the Bard. This is the finest improv troupe in the world, and one of the best comedy shows of any kind, anywhere. Tonight is the first of a three-night NYC run at at Theatre 80 St. Marks (80 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue), with every evening utterly different from the last. This is a rare opportunity to enjoy the breathtakingly skilled Improvised Shakespeare Company

[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 ($7): Sketch groups Party. and CA$H perform at The Magnet theatre: Magnet Sketch Teams

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Strong lineup of Paul Mecurio (Conan O’Brien, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents), Dan Soder (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1; for set about being a hypochondriatic drug user, please click here), Matt Ruby (MTV; co-host of Hot Soup and We’re All Friends Here, award-winning blog Sandpaper Suit), Charla Lauriston (staff writer for Tina Fey’s upcoming NBC series Tooken; MTV; host of School Night), Jordan Carlos (The Colbert Report, MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Guy Court, VH1), and Andy Sandford (Comedy Central, The Beards of Comedy) performing at UCB East hosted by Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon): If You Build It

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00, 9:45 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Neal Brennan and Gary Gulman at at the 8:00 show; Ted Alexandro, Gregg Rogell, Marina Franklin, and Joe LIst at the 9:45 show; and Jena Friedman, Kurt Metzger, and Wil Sylvince at the 11:30 show, with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Sunday

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Superb guest improvisors Micah Sherman, Julie Sharbutt, Doug Stoley, Paul Gutkowski, and Philip Markle, and guest improv groups Brunch Conflict and Bigelo, join host Skycopter (which includes the incredible David Carl) to make up one-act plays on the spot at The PIT downstairs lounge: Act One

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] [FREE] 8:00 pm (FREE online using code JFL; no min.): Paul Virzi (FOX, Spike TV) hosts stand-up auditions for the prestigious Montreal Just for Laughs Festival at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Just For Laughs Stand-Up Auditions

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:30 pm ($10 cover plus $10 drink min.; reservations 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 does gets a free t-shirt! This evening’s yarn-spinners are Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; NPR’s This American Life, WNYC, Sirius XM, Huffington Post, host of Sideshow Goshko), Naomi Azar (NPR’s This American Life). Aaron Wolfe (The Moth podcast), and Kyle Erickson (Kick Assonance). 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 at The Liar Show

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 9:00 pm: Typically terrific stand-ups (not announced) performing at Brooklyn’s Knitting Factory (361 Metropolitan Avenue) typically hosted by the wonderful Hannibal Buress (former staff writer for 30 Rock, Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Louie, The Eric Andre Show, host of Comedy Night, one-hour Comedy Central specials Animal Furnace and Live From Chicago): Comedy Night

9:00 pm ($5): Improvisors take a single (but large) location and explore the many characters who might populate it. “What begins as a collection of disparate scenes across various sub-locations will slowly close in on itself as intersecting storylines converge, the boundaries of space and time are stretched, and we show you firsthand how small the world can be” at The Magnet theatre: Small World

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Phoebe Robinson (MTV’s Girl Code, Glamour Magazine), Joel Walkowski, Jason Burke, Courtney Fearrington, Drew Michael, and Jay Dean performing at the East Village’s Beauty Bar for this free weekly stand-up show hosted by Adam Sokol, Brad Austin, and/or Nate Fridson: Comedy at Beauty Bar

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: To celebrate Mother’s Day, about a dozen stand-ups relate the jokes their funny moms told them when they were growing up, featuring Amber Nelson, Charles Gould, Mike Recine, Dan Licata, and more at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Paul Higbie & Kat Toledo: Mom Jokes

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] [FREE] 10:00 pm (FREE online using code JFL; no min.): Ari Shaffir (Conan O’Brien, HBO’s Down and Dirty, Comedy Central, National Lampoon, hour-long set Passive Aggressive) hosts stand-up auditions for the prestigious Montreal Just for Laughs Festival at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Just For Laughs Stand-Up Auditions

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

6:00 pm ($5): Hour-long open mic stand-up providing 5 minutes per comic. Check-in is at 5:45 at the new Comedians Club of New York (158 West 72nd Street), which was formerly The Triad Theatre: Comedians Club Open Mic

9:30 pm ($3): Open-mic comedy, with 3-5 minutes per walk-in performer who signs up (first come, first serve) at The PIT downstairs lounge, hosted by Will Neville: Amateur Night At The Gemini

[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; 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.


NYC Top Comedy Choices for Friday 1/10/14

January 10, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Huge congratulations to Pete Holmes & staff for TBS
renewing The Pete Holmes Show, slated to resume Feb. 24th

Julie Sharbutt

Wonderful screenwriter/improvisor/actress Julie Sharbutt is among the stellar talents in Greg Kotis’ (co-writer of Urinetown) set of mini-plays “Give the People Want They Want”…

The Improvised Shakespeare Company

…and the greatest improv troupe in the world continues making up instant classics: The Improvised Shakespeare Company

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:

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm & 9:30 pm ($25 with discount code SHAKES FB at the door or online): Genius improvisors from Chicago delivering one of the funniest shows you’ll ever see by making up a play on the spot using the language and themes of the Bard. This is the finest improv troupe in the world, and one of the best comedy shows of any kind, anywhere. Tonight is the second of a four-night NYC run at at Theatre 80 St. Marks (80 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue), with every evening utterly different from the last. This is a rare opportunity to enjoy the breathtakingly skilled Improvised Shakespeare Company

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($7): One of my favorite people in the world, the delightful Lauren Olson (powerhouse one-woman show Our Condolences at FringeNYC; brilliant writer, actress, and improvisor), and her talented comedy partner Jana Schmieding spearhead a showcase for comedic characters, tonight including Megan Gray and about 10 other comics, performing at The Magnet theatre: Jana & Lauren Presents

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($8): Dan Hodapp & Natasha Rothwell “bring more than five years of improv collaboration to stage for an evening of bold, committed characters and probably a fart joke for good measure,” and tonight are joined by stand-up Siobhan Beasley performing at The PIT downstairs lounge: Hodapp & Rothwell

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:00 pm, 8:00 pm, 8:45 pm, 10:30 pm, and 12:15 am ($20-$24 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Kevin Meaney, Gregg Rogell, Greer Barnes, and Lynne Koplitz at the 7:00 show; Ali Wong and Greer Barnes at the 8:00 show; Kevin Meaney, Ali Wong, and Lynne Koplitz at the 8:45 show; Ali Wong, Greer Barnes, and James Smith at the 10:30 show; and Dave Attell, Greer Barnes, Nikki Glaser, James Smith, and Big Jay Oakerson at the 12:15 show, with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) except for the 8:00 pm show at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Comedy Cellar Friday

[TOP PICK] [$] [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): Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), Dave Smith (IFC’s Z-Rock), DC Benny (Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, ABC’s The Unusuals), and more performing stand-up at the only comedy club in the East Village: Eastville Comedy Club

7:00 pm ($8): Five veteran improvisors make stuff up at The PIT upstairs theatre as troupe Lead McEnroe

[FREE] 7:30 pm: Pat Dixon (Comedy Central Presents, FOX, VH1, E!, host of Nearly Naked Lady Comedy Hour), Gibran Saleem (MTV), Meg Cupernall (Dr. Oz), Katie Compa, and TJ Del Reno performing at this monthly stand-up show at the One and One Bar (12 1st Street, corner of First Avenue) hosted by Jeff Cerulli and the delightful Chelsea White (MTV, VH1, TLC, co-host of Call Us Crazy): What Else? Comedy

[TOP PICK] [$] 7:30 pm ($15): Stone Cold Fox is the only sketch group (vs. improv group) to ever be honored with an ongoing spot on the prestigious UCB Chelsea weekend schedule. It’s earned this slot because its writers (who include stellar comics Brandon Gulya and Silvija Ozols) are terrific, and its cast is superb: Brandon Scott Jones, Molly Lloyd, John Murray, Leslie Meisel, Connor Ratliff, and Johnathan Fernandez. (If you’re in the industry, hire them.) Enjoy this new collection of sketches from these sexy performers (which I hope to see soon): Stone Cold Fox: Sexy Idiots

7:30 pm ($5): NYC comics (not announced) performing stand-up or storytelling at UCB East hosted by Halle Kiefer: Splitsider’s Dog and Pony Show

[$] 7:30 pm ($38.25 & 2-drink min.): An Iranian-American stand-up headlining tonight through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Max Amini

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

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($20; no min.): Wyatt Cenac (former star correspondent for The Daily Show, Comedy Central hour-long special, Adult Swim, host of Night Train), Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), 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), Christian Finnegan (Conan O’Brien, co-star of TBS’ Are We There Yet?; three Comedy Central specials; MSNBC, VH1’s Best Week Ever, Chappelle’s Show, The Today Show), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Sherrod Small (writer/performer on TBS’ Are We There Yet?, Comedy Central, VH1), and Dante Nero (Comedy Central, HBO, ABC, FOX) performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Wyatt Cenac, Judah Friedlander, Nikki Glaser, Christian FInnegan, Big Jay Oakerson, and More

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10 at the door or $12.62 online): Dave Hill (one of the most original and hilariously sharp alternative comics in the country) hosts this monthly show, tonight featuring Jackie Kashian, Ben Lerman, Har Mar Superstar, Doug Gillard, Mike Bocchetti, Alex Edelman, and Jodi Lennon performing at Brooklyn’s Union Hall: Meet Me in the Bathroom and Tell Me All Your Secrets

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($10): Before this Magnet show, audience members may anonymously submit written confessions, secrets, rants, advice and opinions which will be used onstage by the improvisors—who include such talents as Laura Grey (stellar old-time radio style theatrical podcast Horrorgasm, improv troupe Salmon Diane, sketch/improv duo Klepper & Grey): The Friday Night Sh*w

[$] 8:30 pm & 10:30 pm ($26 & 2-drink min.): A stand-up who’s hosted MTV’s Numbnuts and Money From Strangers, and starred in a Comedy Central Presents special, headlining tonight and Saturday at the Gotham Comedy Club with terrific openers Ophira Eisenberg, Joe List, and Vic Henley: Jeff Dye, Ophira Eisenberg, Joe List and Vic Henley

[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

[FREE—plus FREE DRINKS & SNACKS! Reserve seats by emailing lukaskaiser@gmail.com with subject GREAT GRANDMA PANTIES] 9:00 pm for free drinks & snacks, 9:30 pm for show: Jared Logan (rising star; Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing, CNN, TBS), Matt Koff (writer for The Daily Show), Andy Rocco (The Tony Show, Underground Americana), Dicks & Stones, and Julio Torres performing stand-up at Brit Pack Studios (153 Lafayette Street, 3rd Floor) hosted by Hoff Matthews & Lukas Kaiser: HP5000 Live Comedy

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

9:30 pm ($5): Solo character comedy from Kelly Fitzpatrick, Kenji America, Mary Crosbie, Sharon Jamilkowski, Margaret Dodge, and talented host Jenn Dodd in a parody of a talent contest at The PIT downstairs lounge: Buttski & Glasscock’s New Talent Blowout

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

[TOP PICK] 10:00 pm ($20; no min.): Wyatt Cenac (former star correspondent for The Daily Show, Comedy Central hour-long special, Adult Swim, host of Night Train), Judah Friedlander (one of the quickest minds in comedy; 30 Rock, Meet the Parents, Along Came Polly, author of How to Beat Up Anybody), 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), Christian Finnegan (Conan O’Brien, co-star of TBS’ Are We There Yet?; three Comedy Central specials; MSNBC, VH1’s Best Week Ever, Chappelle’s Show, The Today Show), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Sherrod Small (writer/performer on TBS’ Are We There Yet?, Comedy Central, VH1), and Dante Nero (Comedy Central, HBO, ABC, FOX) performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Wyatt Cenac, Judah Friedlander, Nikki Glaser, Christian FInnegan, Big Jay Oakerson, and More

[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC comics performing stand-up at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Justin Grace, Mike Pullan and James Ferrarella, who also promise “skits, arm wrestling, jeopardy, contests, drinking, and everything else you would do on an” Almost Saturday Show

[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 ($10): Josh Sharp (co-star of superb UCB sketch show GUMP), Brandon Scott Wolf (contributing writer to SNL), and Paul Oddo (co-host of The Friday Night Hot Chicks Mic) performing stand-up or sketch at UCB East hosted by Brandon Scott Jones, D’Arcy Carden, Justin Tyler, Kelly Hudson, and/or Alden Ford: Gentrify

[MEGA-TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): I’m not sure he’s in NYC tonight, but one of the finest improvisors alive, Joe Bill (Bassprov, iO, co-founder of the Annoyance Theatre) will either personally spearhead or lead in spirit a breathtakingly brilliant group of improvisors from Chicago and New York who will blow the roof off The PIT downstairs lounge with lightning-quick dark comedy unlike anything else in NYC. The other superb players typically are Doug Stoley (Conan O’Brien, The Scene), Amey Goerlich (Indie Cage Match, Krompf, The Scene), Jodi Lennon (Exit 57, Annoyance Theatre), Jed Resnik (Annoyance Theatre, UCB), Silvija Ozols (The Stepfathers), Betsy Stover (UCB), Ari Voukydis (VH1’s Best Week Ever, UCB), Russ Armstrong (iO Chicago, The Magnet), Micah Sherman (Second City, co-host of The Scene, host of Fun), Rick Andrews (Magnet teacher/performer), and Michael Burton (Act One, The Magnet), all declaring Chica Go-Go

[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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] Midnight: Pot stand-up from “highly talented comics who have been highly recommended from people who are thought highly of in the business. Oh, and they’ll be high” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre hosted by Clayton English & Noah Gardenswartz: High Five

[DISCOUNTED] Midnight ($10 online using discount code VORTEX; no min.): Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), DJ No Face, Giulio Gallarotti, Ben & Josh, Crystian Ramirez, and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Big Jay Oakerson and More

Midnight ($5): “A live monthly comedy game show in which three contestants participate in a battle of wits and knowledge for the chance to win a grand prize of 20 American dollars” at UCB East hosted by Ryan Simmons: Everyone’s Favorite Game Show

Friday Open Mics & Jams

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

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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic show on a lottery system (sign-ups happen at 5:45-6:00 pm) at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with host Eli Sairs: The Orphanage

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

[FREE] 7:00 pm: Open-mic stand-up, with 3 minutes per comic (unless not many folks show up, in which case there’ll be more time), with names drawn out of a bucket at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”) hosted by Sarah Tollemache and/or Paul Oddo: The Friday Night Hot Chicks Open Mic

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

[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 members of Maude troupe Moriarty: 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.)

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 Thursday 1/9/14

January 9, 2014

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Huge congratulations to Pete Holmes & staff for TBS
renewing The Pete Holmes Show; look for it next month

The Improvised Shakespeare Company

Tthe smartest & funniest comedy improv troupe in the world returns to NYC for a four-night run starting tonight at 9:30 at Theatre 80 St. Marks: The Improvised Shakespeare Company…

The Improvised Opera

…or if you’d prefer a different kind of classical experience, check out The PIT’s The Improvised Opera

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): Meredith Hackman (host of Saddest Sketch Show) performs a one-woman show about highly unlikable people at The PIT upstairs theatre: I Hate You

7:00 pm ($5): All-gal improvisors Alexis Saarela, Brigid Boyle, Elizabeth Findlay, and Ashley Ward, plus guests Jo Firestone, Shalyah Evans, and Megan Doherty, perform at the PIT downstairs lounge as group Taco Supreme

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5): 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), Stone & Stone (Last Comic Standing, Stone & Stone Show), Ben Kronberg (Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, ABC), and Emily Frankfurt performing stand-up at UCB East hosted by Sean Crespo, Dan Wilbur, and/or Katina Corrao: Lasers in the Jungle

[$] 7:45 pm, 9:30 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Judah Friedlander and Gregg Rogell at the 9:30 show, and Mark Normand, Nikki Glaser, Kurt Metzger, 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 Thursday

[$] 7:30 pm ($35 & 2-drink min.): An Iranian-American stand-up headlining tonight through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Max Amini

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($20, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Stand-ups perform set lists on the spot provided by Paul Provenza, with tonight’s comics 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), 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), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Sam Morril (Comedy Central), and more thinking quickly on their feet at Village Underground (130 West 3rd Street, off Sixth Avenue): Set List with Paul Provenza

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, a double-bill from unique comedy talent Brandon Gulya. First Brandon performs witty and surreal one-man show Who Are You People and Why Are You Watching Me?

..and then Matt Dennie & Josh Sharp prove themselves among the finest writer/performers at UCB with a consistently charming and hilarious version of Forest Gump that covers the entire film in 30 minutes, and features a deliciously funny Jenny played by Brandon Gulya, who also directed, resulting in one of the best sketch shows currently playing on an NYC stage: GUMP

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($8): Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Sirius XM, Huffington Post, host of Sideshow Goshko), Caitlin Brodnick (co-host of Shut Up: An All-Female Storytelling Show), Christine Gentry, Ginny Leise, and Andrea Macy tell “hilarious, gross, awkward, and heartfelt stories of how they started out in NYC” at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Mallory Schlossberg (“who actually is a Girls fan, but once lived in a basement): Real Girls: Lena Dunham Got It Wrong

8:00 pm ($5): Two musical improv groups make up song-and-dance based stories on the spot at The PIT downstairs lounge: Slick Zombie & Hemlock

8:00 pm-10:00 pm ($7 for the entire evening): The Magnet house improv groups Junior Varsity and Hello Laser performing improv for an hour, followed at 9:00 pm by One-Hit Wonder (veteran musical improvisors make up the story of a band: how they met, how they became successful with their big hit song, their downfall, and where they are today), at 10:00 pm by veteran improvisors making up scenes based on improvised monologues from star storyteller Dave Hill (one of the most original and hilariously sharp alternative comics in the country; HBO, Comedy Central, MTV, VH1, NPR, The Dave Hill Explosion, bands Valley Lodge and Diamondsnake, champion rapper, author of Tasteful Nudes) at The Armando Diaz Experience, and finally at 11:00 by improv competition Inspirado (like UCBT’s Cage Match, but with a game-like challenge component): The Magnet’s Night Out

[$] 8:00 pm ($15; no min.): Writers & performers of VH1’s Best Week Ever, including Jared Logan, Michelle Buteau, Sherrod Small, Emily Tarver, Amanda Seales, and Pete Lee, performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): VH1’s Best Week Ever Stands Up

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Jena Friedman (wry dark comedy stand-up and rising star; producer for The Daily Show, former staff writer for David Letterman), Jordan Carlos (The Colbert Report, MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Guy Court, VH1), and Lukas Kaiser telling stories about movies at Videology (308 Bedford Avenue) hosted by John Murray and Matt Fisher: Low Standards with John & Matt

[FREE] 8:00 pm: NYC stand-ups Phoebe Robinson, Mike Denny, Steven Forrest, and Janelle James performing at Poco Restaurant & Bar (33 Avenue B at 3rd Street) hosted by Sooyah Jun and/or Jawann Carmona: FTH Comedy

[FREE] 8:00 pm: This monthly show features “a swarthy selection of fine stand-up comics and mildly entertaining recurring segments” at Queens LIC’s The Creek upstairs theatre, hosted by Jim Tews & Brendan Eyre: Chest Hair

9:00 pm ($5): Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award), Matt Koff (writer for The Daily Show), Alex Koll (Conan O’Brien, Comedy Central), Naomi Ekperigin, Nate Fridson, and Chris Laker performing at UCB East hosted by Adam Conover (College Humor, Olde English): Fresh Out

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 9:30 pm ($25 with discount code SHAKES FB at the door or online): Genius improvisors from Chicago delivering one of the funniest shows you’ll ever see by making up a play on the spot using the language and themes of the Bard. This is the finest improv troupe in the world, and one of the best comedy shows of any kind, anywhere. Tonight is the first of a four-night NYC run at at Theatre 80 St. Marks (80 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue), with every evening utterly different from the last. This is a rare opportunity to enjoy the breathtakingly skilled Improvised Shakespeare Company

[TOP PICK] 9:30 pm ($10): Improvisors aim for “the comedy, drama, and vocal juiciness of a Mozart masterpiece made up on the spot; come hear beautiful arias appear out of nowhere as someone’s beloved is ravaged by a cheese monster, Gary Busey, or anything else the audience suggests” at The PIT upstairs theatre: The Improvised Opera

9:30 pm ($5): At UCB Chelsea, writer/performers Dru Johnston & Don Fanelli demonstrate perfect comedic timing—coupled with sorta terrible singing, sketch comedy, and a PowerPoint presentation—for a very silly show aiming to prove “Billy Joel is the greatest recording artist of all time.” I hope these guys aim for something meatier and more resonant to tackle next time, because they’ve got chops, which is especially evident at the dynamic start when they interact with the audience; but in the meantime you’re likely to enjoy Sketches From an Italian Restaurant: A Billy Joel Sketch Show

..and in the other half of this double-bill, a three-person mini-play that I’m amazed is still on the UCB schedule. Someone in management must like this, but you probably won’t: Greasy Lake: Key to the City

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($15; no min.): Mark Normand (hilarious red-hot 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), 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), Jared Logan (rising star; Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing, CNN, TBS), Ben & Josh, and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Mark Normand, Joe Pera, Jared Logan, and More

[FREE] 10:00 pm: NYC stand-ups (lineup not announced) performing at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Justin Williams & Akash Bhasin: Death Comedy Jam

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): This year’s Cage Match improv playoffs continue, pitting the best against the best. Last week the longest running group at UCB, The Stepfathers, managed a close victory against Grandma’s Ashes with 67 votes to 56. Tonight The Stepfathers do battle again, this time against the formidable Scrambled Legs, in what’s likely to be a fierce and hilarious fight for your laughs and votes at UCB Chelsea for the raucous Cage Match

[TOP PICK] 11:00 pm ($5): Stand-up, storytelling, and carny join forces to bring the blog And I Am Not Lying to life on stage, with storytelling by host Jeff Simmermon (NPR’s This American Life), stand-up by Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon; host of If You Bring It) and carny comic Abigoliah Schamaun (“who will chew and swallow an entire light bulb during her set”), and burlesque by Matt Knife and Vada James, all at the UCB East theatre: And I Am Not Lying

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

[FREE] 5:30 pm: All-gal open-mic at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”) hosted by Anna Drezen & Sue Smith: Open Michelle: Ladies 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

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 Hello Laser 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 the Old 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 at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Josh Alba: Mic and Cheese

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): An open stage for indie improv groups—and if you’re not in a group, that’s also fine, you’ll simply be added to one—at The PIT downstairs lounge hosted by Darcy Burke & Donna Lobello: New Team Lunacy

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 Tuesday 11/12/13

November 12, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Jena Friedman

Wryly dark stand-up Jena Friedman performs at UCB East’s “Topical Storm” and “The Tony Show”…

The Improvised Shakespeare Company

…and it’s your last chance to experience the sharpest & most hilarious improv troupe around: “The Improvised Shakespeare Company”

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:

 6:00 pm ($8, which includes 1 drink): Storytellers Paul Jones, Rebecca Mills, Eli Reiter, and Deni Robay tell tales about New York at the West Village’s Cornelia Street Cafe (29 Cornelia Street) hosted by Thomas Pryor: City Stories

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm & 9:30 pm ($25 with discount code IRCDEAL at the door or online): Genius improvisors from Chicago delivering one of the funniest shows you’ll ever see by making up a play on the spot using the language and themes of the Bard. This is the finest improv troupe in the world, and one of the best comedy shows of any kind, anywhere. Tonight is the conclusion of a three-night NYC run at at Theatre 80 St. Marks (80 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue), with every evening utterly different from the last. (The 9:30 show is sold out, but you can try for the stand-by list…) This is your last chance for a while to enjoy the breathtakingly skilled Improvised Shakespeare Company

[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

7:00 pm ($8): Group Felix Culpa performs sketch comedy about America’s Founding Fathers at The PIT upstairs theatre: Afterbirth of a Nation

7:00 pm ($5): Comedy groups Sandwich and Komono compete in the realms of sketch and improv at The PIT downstairs lounge: Sketchy Sketchy Prov Prov

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

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Current events analyzed with a comedic twist from guests Jena Friedman (wry dark comedy stand-up and rising star; producer for The Daily Show, former staff writer for David Letterman), Sal Gentile (MSNBC’s Up Late with Alec Baldwin), and Joe Burns (Weekend of Regret) at UCB East hosted by Zhubin Parang (The Daily Show, What I Did for Love) and Cody Lindquist (Improv Everywhere): Topical Storm

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Storytellers Leslie Goshko (delightful & razor-sharp storyteller/comic; WNYC, Sirius XM, Huffington Post, host of Sideshow Goshko), Andy Christie (host of The Liar Show; The New York Times, NPR, Moth GrandSlam Champion), Jordan Carlos (The Colbert Report, MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Guy Court, VH1), and Ginny Leise telling true tales about this month’s theme Passages at the Three of Cups lounge (83 First Avenue at 5th Street) hosted by Andrew Linderman: Local Stories: Passages

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($8): A sketch comedy group that includes Keisha Zollar (Doppelganger, host of The Soul Glo Jam, Andy Kaufman Award finalist) at The PIT upstairs theatre: Slap Fight

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm ($15; no 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.), Michelle Wolf (super-likeable dark comic rising star; MTV’s Girl Code, IFC), Jared Logan (rising star; Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever, CNN, TBS), Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents), Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon; host of If You Bring It), and more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Ted Alexandro, Michelle Wolf, Jared Logan, and More

[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

9:00 pm ($7): Andy Haynes (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central Half Hour), Michael Weingartner (impressionist; Sirius XM Radio host, VH1, A&E), and more performing at The Slipper Room (167 Orchard Street) guest-hosted tonight by Nick Vatterott & Nick Stevens: Sweet

[FREE] 9:00 pm: NYC stand-ups & sketch comics (not announced) 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 Sherlock & Cookies, Namaste, 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 hosting as “Dylan Janks Jr. and his country superstars for a little Nashville entertainment in New York City; we’ll have buxom babes, stupid bumpkins, and down-home tunes” (with help from producer Andy Rocco and Jesse VandenBergh); plus stand-up from Jena Friedman (wry dark comedy stand-up and rising star; producer for The Daily Show, former staff writer for David Letterman), Jared Logan (rising star; Comedy Central Half Hour, Last Comic Standing, VH1’s Best Week Ever, CNN, TBS), and Dava Krause, all performing at the UCB East theatre: The Tony Show

9:30 pm ($8): NYC comics Emmy Blotnick, Lisa Kleinman, Melissa Caminecci, Andrea Macy, and Natalie Wall tell “hilarious, gross, awkward, and heartfelt stories of how they started out in NYC” at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Mallory Schlossberg: Real Girls: Lena Dunham Got It Wrong

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Hannibal Buress (former staff writer for 30 Rock, Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Louie, The Eric Andre Show, host of Comedy Night, one-hour Comedy Central special Animal Furnace), 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), Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), Gina Yashere (Showtime one-hour special, Jay Leno, Chelsea Lately), Roy Wood Jr. (David Letterman, HBO’S Def Comedy Jam,, Mike Yard (Comedy Central, Def Comedy Jam), Andrew Schulz (MTV’s Guy Code, Girl Code, Failosophy), and Mike Vecchione (Last Comic Standing, Howard Stern) performing stand-up at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane) hosted by William Stephenson (FX’s Louie, The Chris Rock Show): Hannibal Buress, Nikki Glaser, Ryan Hamilton, and More

[FREE] 10:00 pm (reserve your free spots by clicking here): Seaton Smith (Opie & Anthony Virus Tour), Chris Distefano (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV2’s Guy Code), Kevin McCaffrey (writer for David Letterman; TruTV), Josh Rabinowitz (Comedy Central), Simeon Goodson (Comedy Central), and more 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] 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

[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, with tonight’s guest host Tim Warner (Modern Day Philosophers) 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 The Magnet improv group Legend: 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 Monday 11/11/13

November 11, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Michelle Wolf

Rising star stand-up Michelle Wolf performs at UCB East’s So Into It and The Stand’s new free show Frantic Mondays…

The Improvised Shakespeare Company

…and the breathtakingly skilled & hilarious The Improvised Shakespeare Company continues its NYC run tonight at Theatre 80 St. Marks

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:

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm & 9:30 pm ($25 with discount code IRCDEAL at the door or online): Genius improvisors from Chicago delivering one of the funniest shows you’ll ever see by making up a play on the spot using the language and themes of the Bard. This is the finest improv troupe in the world, and one of the best comedy shows of any kind, anywhere. Tonight is the second of a three-night NYC run at at Theatre 80 St. Marks (80 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue), with every evening utterly different from the last. This is a rare opportunity to enjoy the breathtakingly skilled Improvised Shakespeare Company

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm ($5): Visiting UK sketch comics Hannah Croft & Fiona Pearce perform for one night only at The Magnet theatre: Croft & Pearce

[FREE] 7:00 pm: NYC comics Becky Yamamoto, Jenny Rubin, Todd Womack, Simeon Goodson, and Nathan Macintosh performing at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) hosted by Mike Brown, Molly Austin, and/or Shakir Standley: Big Pony Show

[$] 7:30 pm ($20 & 2-drink min.) The Andy Kaufman Award isn’t nearly as pretigious as it should be due to incredibly poor choices by past judges—such as neglecting to even include Joe Pera as a contender for the past three years when he’s clearly the most appropriate guy to win. (You can see Joe tonight for free, along with Michelle Wolf, who also deserves the award, 10:00 pm at The Stand’s Frantic Mondays.) That said, there’ll be some talented performers competing tonight for hopefully less than bone-headed judges at the Gotham Comedy Club: The Andy Kaufman Award Finals

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($8 at the door or $9.47 online): Great lineup of Jon Glaser, Myq Kaplan, SNL’s Brooks Wheelan, Sasheer Zamata, Andy Haynes, and Barry Rothbart performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Littlefield (622 Degraw Street) hosted by Wyatt Cenac (former star correspondent for The Daily Show, Comedy Central hour-long special, Adult Swim): Night Train

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Rory Scovel (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central) performs stand-up at the UCB Chelsea theatre: Rory Scovel for the Hour

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): The debut of a monthly show about obsessions over pop culture, with tonight’s guests Michelle Wolf (super-likeable dark comic rising star; MTV’s Girl Code, IFC), John Early (30 Rock), Mara Wilson, and more at UCB East hosted by Damian Bellino and Anne: So Into It: A Fanatic Variety Show

[TOP PICK] [DISCOUNTED] 8:00 pm ($7.25 online using discount code NORTHERN; no min.): Julian McCullough (fiercely funny star; Comedy Central Presents, Jimmy Fallon, MTV, VH1, TBS, NPR’s This American Life; for Julian’s set on Fallon, please click here), Ari Shaffir (Conan O’Brien, HBO’s Down and Dirty, Comedy Central, National Lampoon, hour-long set Passive Aggressive), Ryan Hamilton (Conan O’Brien, Last Comic Standing, Comedy Central, Showtime), and Paul Virzi performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street) hosted by Ray Devito & Josh Carter: Northern Discomfort

[$] 8:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Ali Wong (fearless, razor-sharp, hilarious comedy dynamo; Jay Leno, FOX, NBC’s Are You There Chelsea?, film Savages), Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Dan Soder (Comedy Central Half Hour, VH1; for set about being a hypochondriatic drug user, please click here), and more 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): Ali Wong, Big Jay Oakerson, Dan Soder, and More

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

[TOP PICK] 8:30 pm ($5): Elana Fishbein performs an usual one-woman improv show at The Magnet theatre: Pepita; plus improv group Weekend of Regret

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Mara Herron (Web series That Chick Mara Herron), Greg Barris (host of Heart of Darkness), Andrew Short, Billy Prinsell, and Derek Phelps performing stand-up, plus music from Gillian Leigh Visco, all performing at Brooklyn’s Freddy’s Bar (627 Fifth Avenue; take R subway to Prospect Avenue) for this free biweekly show hosted by 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) and Giulia Rozzi (Jimmy Kimmel, MTV, VH1, Playgirl Magazine, co-host of Stripped Stories): Dive Comedy

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Meghan O’Keefe, Kat Burdick, Mary Houlihan, Sam Evans, Bryan Yang, and Evan Berke performing stand-up, sketch, storytelling, and/or music at Brooklyn’s Over the Eight (594 Union Ave) hosted by Charla Lauriston, Sue Smith, and Liza Dye: Free Cable

9:30 pm ($5): Two UCB Chelsea house sketch groups try out new material: Alamo (which includes Siobhan Thompson) and Moriarty (which includes Alexandra Kokesh and Kara Klenk): Maude Night: Alamo and Moriarty

9:30 pm ($5): Improv veterans Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, Phillip Jackson, and/or Steve Theiss hosting & performing in a show at UCB East with guest improvisors: Improv Nerds

[FREE] 9:30 pm: Live stage readings of popular Saved By The Bell episodes, with each cast member allowed an optional 3-minute Zack Morris style “time out” for episode-specific stand-up or a fan fiction bonus scene at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Bayside Myself

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: The debut of a free Monday night stand-up show, with tonight’s comics including Michelle Wolf (super-likeable dark comic rising star; MTV’s Girl Code, IFC), 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), Adam Newman (David Letterman, Comedy Central, MTV, host of Big Long Sets), and many more performing stand-up at The Stand Comedy Club (239 Third Avenue & 20th Street): Frantic Mondays

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($12 plus 2-item food/drink min.): Strong lineup of 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), Hannibal Buress (former staff writer for 30 Rock, Saturday Night Live; David Letterman, Jimmy Fallon, Louie, The Eric Andre Show, host of Comedy Night, one-hour Comedy Central special Animal Furnace), 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), Keith Robinson (HBO, Comedy Central, Wanda Sykes Show), and Gina Yashere (Showtime 1-hour special, Jay Leno, Chelsea Lately) 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): Dave Attell, Hannibal Buress, Gary Gulman, and More

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

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 11:00 pm: Some of the finest comics in the world—who aren’t announced in advance, but it’s virtually always a great lineup—at UCB Chelsea hosted by someone wonderful: Whiplash

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 the Stand Up NY Comedy Club (236 West 78th Street): Stand Up NY 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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic stand-up show, with 10 comics each performing for 5 minutes, at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Abigoliah Schamaun & Peggy O’Leary: Dicks Open Mic

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 6:30 pm: Open-mic storytelling, with names drawn out of a bucket at UCB East in the bar area (“Hot Chicks Room”), hosted by Julia Wiedeman: Happy Hour Open-Mic Storytelling with Julia Wiedeman

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 Monday 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 Tim Duffy: Comics Phoning It In

7:30 pm ($10; sign-up starts at 7:00 pm): Open mic for stand-ups, storytellers, singers, poets, actors, and more, with 5 minutes per performer and 25 slots available, at One and One Bar’s Downstairs Nexus Lounge (76 1st Street, corner of First Avenue) hosted by Nathan P., followed by a raucous afterparty with dancing & drink specials from 10:00 to midnight: Inspired Word’s Open Mic Joint

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Biweekly open mic for telling stories about sex, desire and romance at The Delancey (168 Delancey Street) hosted by Jefferson and tonight featuring special guest hosted by Julia Wiedeman (see 6:30 pm): Foreplay: A Sexy Storytelling Open Mic

10:30 pm ($5): Improv veterans Brandon Gardner, Chelsea Clarke, and Phillip Jackson hosting & performing in a show at UCB East with improvisors taken from the audience…and who may include you: Improv Nerds Jam

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

[ALMOST FREE] 11:00 pm ($1): If you’re an audience member who loves stand-up, Monday at 11 should be Whiplash! night. If you’re a comic who couldn’t get booked on UCBT’s all-star show, though, you can opt to instead practice your skills at this exceptionally supportive stand-up open-mic at The PIT upstairs theatre hosted by Jarrid Reed: Fresh

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 Sunday 11/10/13

November 10, 2013

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Larry David

A comedy legend is interviewed by David Steinberg at Town Hall: Larry David…

Moshe Kasher

…UCB East hosts an hour with visiting LA stand-up Moshe Kasher…

RG Daniels

…RG Daniels celebrates his show’s Five Year Anniversary, plus the release of his first book, at Sunday Night Stand-Up…

The Improvised Shakespeare Company

…and the smartest & funniest comedy improv troupe in the world will perform tonight through Tuesday at NYC’s Theatre 80 St. Marks for a spectacular run that must not be missed: The Improvised Shakespeare Company

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] [$] On this final day of this year’s spectacular New York Comedy Festival, the stars including Charlie Murphy headlining at Carolines, Larry David being interviewed by David Steinberg at Town Hall, Moshe Kasher headlining at UCB East, and the genius members of The Improvised Shakespeare Company at Theatre 80 St. Marks. To explore the entire schedule, please click New York Comedy Festival

[TOP PICK] 2:00 pm-10:00 pm ($5 per show): The second of two days of solo performances, with notable performers today including Julia Wiedeman at 2:30 and Harmon Leon at 8:50, plus a panel about solo shows at 4:00 pm, running at both the upstairs and downstairs PIT theatres for just $5 per show: Solocom

[FREE] 5:00 pm: A mix of longform, shortform, and musical improv from five groups, typically including Mishmosh, at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Michael Venzor: The Long and Short of It

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:00 pm & 9:30 pm ($25 with discount code IRCDEAL; this show is SOLD OUT but there’ll be a waiting list if you show up early; you can also nab tickets for Tuesday in advance here): Genius improvisors from Chicago delivering one of the funniest shows you’ll ever see by making up a play on the spot using the language and themes of the Bard. This is the finest improv troupe in the world, and one of the best comedy shows of any kind, anywhere. Tonight is the first of a three-night NYC run at at Theatre 80 St. Marks (80 St. Marks Place, off First Avenue), with every evening utterly different from the last. Both performances are SOLD OUT, but if you show up early you might find a few seats opened up via last minute cancellations or no-shows, or nab a standing-room spot. This is a rare opportunity to enjoy the breathtakingly skilled Improvised Shakespeare Company

[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 ($7): New groups Party. and The Misses perform sketch comedy at The Magnet theatre: Magnet Sketch Teams

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($7): 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), Seth Herzog (staff comic for Jimmy Fallon; 30 Rock, Comedy Central, CBS, VH1, film actor; host of Sweet), Kate Berlant (MTV, CNN, host of Crime & Punishment, notable hair), and more performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Union Hall hosted by Caroline Creaghead: Creaghead & Company

[TOP PICK] 8:00 pm ($5): Paul Mecurio (Conan O’Brien, The Daily Show, Comedy Central Presents), Baron Vaughn (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour; co-star of USA’s Fairly Legal and Comedy Central’s The Awkward Comedy Show, MTV, VH1), Keith Alberstadt (David Letterman, VH1, contributor to SNL’s Weekend Update), Rob O’Reilly, Nate Fridson, and Kate Hendricks performing at UCB East with host Kara Klenk (Comedy Central, Spike, Nickelodeon): If You Build It

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 8:00 pm: Host RG Daniels celebrates the release of his first book Ten Shows along with the Five Year Anniversary of his Sunday night show, aided by stellar comedic music performers Chris “Shockwave” Sullivan and The Cowmen, plus stand-up from Anthony Devito, Greg Stone, Matt Wayne, and Doug Smith, all performing at the Three of Cups lounge (83 First Avenue at 5th Street): Sunday Night Stand-Up

[TOP PICK] [$] 8:00 pm, 9:45 pm, and 11:30 pm ($14 per show, plus 2-item food/drink min.): Tonight’s lineups include Tom Papa and Gary Gulman at the 8:00 pm show, with all shows at Comedy Cellar (117 MacDougal Street, between 3rd Street & Minetta Lane): Comedy Cellar Sunday

[FREE] 8:00 pm: “A TV show that airs so late at night, it’s technically the first morning show of the next day on Queens Public Television and streaming on Vimeo.com, anchored by Kevin McCaffrey & Elizabeth Kuchta, with weatherman Jon Daly, and additional help from Jaimie Hughes, Shane Heimann, and guests” at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Technically Tomorrow

[FREE] 9:00 pm: Nick Vatterott (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Comedy Central Half Hour, MTV, Second City, 2012 Andy Kaufman Award), Sheng Wang (Comedy Central Presents), Myka Fox, and Noah Gardenswartz 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): A one-woman show by Ruby Marez about ADD, OCD, and more at The Magnet theatre: Excessively, Obsessively

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: Big Jay Oakerson (Comedy Central Presents, Louie, HBO, Showtime, MTV, IFC), Pat Dixon (Comedy Central Presents, FOX, VH1, E!, host of Nearly Naked Lady Comedy Hour), and Joey Gay performing sets and then being interviewed about their personal lives at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Matt Ruby & Mark Normand (who says “all these guys were hand-picked because they’re funny and have some serious problems; when you read this lineup you’re gonna be like ‘oh yeah, that guy is a mess'”): We’re All Friends Here

[TOP PICK] [$] 10:00 pm ($15): Stand-up Moshe Kasher (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Fallon, Chelsea Lately, Comedy Central, Showtime, MTV, writer for NBC’s The New Normal) headlines at the UCB East theatre: Moshe Kasher for the Hour

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

[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

[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.)

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 10/5/12

October 5, 2012

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.

Baby Wants Candy

Two Chicago-based improv troupes that are the greatest in the world perform tonight: at The Magnet, Baby Wants Candy…

Blaine Swen of The Improvised Shakespeare Company

…and at Theatre 80, The Improvised Shakespeare Company

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

[FREE] 6:00 pm: An open-mic show on a lottery system (sign-ups happen at 5:45-6:00 pm) at The Creek downstairs lounge in Queens’ Long Island City with hosts Erin Lennox and Eli Sairs: The Orphanage

[TOP PICK] 7:00 pm-MIdnight ($10-$15 per show): The Magnet continues its 4th Annual New York Musical Improv Festival with THEM and North Coast at 7:00, BEEES! and Baby Wants Candy at 8:30, and The Made Up Musical at 10:00: The Magnet’s New York Musical Improv Festival

[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 and Paul Oddo: The Friday Night Hot Chicks Mic

[MEGA-TOP PICK] [$] [DISCOUNTED] 7:30 pm & 10:00 pm ($22.73 with discount code ISCFBOOK; this show is SOLD OUT but there might be a teeny waiting list): Genius improvisors from Chicago delivering one of the funniest shows you’ll ever see by making up a play on the spot using the language and themes of the Bard. This is the finest improv troupe in the world, and one of the best comedy shows of any kind, anywhere. (I attended the 10:00 pm show last night and yes, they’re still super awesome…) Tonight is the last of a three-night NYC run, with every evening utterly different from the last. Both performances are SOLD OUT, but if you show up early you might find a few seats opened up via last minute cancellations (not from me, though; I’ll be at both performances…). This is a rare opportunity to enjoy the breathtakingly skilled Improvised Shakespeare Company

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($10): Comedy genius Shannon O’Neill (breathtakingly innovative, lighting-quick, and fearless improvisor/sketch comic and rising star; The Stepfathers, Diamond Lion) does a monthly show at UCB Chelsea based on nothing but interviews with the audience and sheer guts: Strangers Wanted with Shannon O’Neill

[TOP PICK] 7:30 pm ($5): Stellar improvisors Aaron Jackson, Don Fanelli, Brandon Gulya, Kate Riley, and more interview an audience member about some puzzle and then act out scenes providing an unexpected answer: Sandino: Unsolved Mysteries

8:00 pm ($5): “It may be made up on the spot, but there is a method to the madness. In this show players explore the structure of improv by performing unique forms provided by the community and abroad” at The PIT downstairs lounge: True to Form

[FREE] 8:00 pm: Michelle Buteau (Last Comic Standing, Craig Ferguson, Comedy Central, VH1; for stand-up video about Utah, sharing, and tits, please click here), Jermaine Fowler (FOX’s new In Living Color), Chris Distefano (MTV’s Guy Code), and Brendan Fitzgibbons (Bravo) performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Postmark Cafe (326 6th Street) hosted by  Abbi Crutchfield & Luke Thayer: The Living Room

8:00 pm ($5): D&D-style epic fantasy improv, plus nerdy stand-up, at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City hosted by Eric Grundhauserled as your Dungeon Master

[$] 8:00 pm ($38.25 & 2-drink min.) A comic who’s performed on HBO’s Def Comedy Jam and Bad Boys of Comedy, Showtime at Harlem, BET’s ComicView, and the feature film Next Friday headlining tonight through Sunday at the Carolines Comedy Club: Michael Blackson

[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 in Queens’ Long Island City downstairs lounge: Mic and Cheese

[$] 8:30 pm & 10:30 pm pm ($25 & 2-drink min.): Winner of the second season of Last Comic Standing, a frequent performer on Jay Leno and VH1, and star of two Comedy Central Presents half-hour specials and an hour-long Comedy Central special, headlining tonight through Sunday at the Gotham Comedy Club: John Heffron

[FREE] 8:30ish pm: Hari Kondabolu (Conan O’Brien, Jimmy Kimmel, Comedy Central Presents, , FX’s Totally Biased), Chris Distefano (MTV’s Guy Code), Kate Berlant (MTV, CNN, host of Crime & Punishment, notable hair), Team Submarine, and more performing stand-up at Brooklyn’s Red Star (37 Greenpoint Avenue) hosted by Annie Lederman, followed by wild Karaoke: Pirate Party

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

[TOP PICK] 9:00 pm ($10): Sharp improvisors at UCB East—Michael Kayne, Amber Petty, Ashley Ward, Morgan Phillips, and Winston Noel—making up a musical on the spot: Diamond Lion

9:30 pm ($10): A PIT improv troupe making up a musical on the spot after a friendly greeting: Hello

[TOP PICK] [FREE] 10:00 pm: Emily Heller (Comedy Central; staff writer for Rooftop Comedy; for ruminations on pregnancy, please click here) and her comedy friends celebrate her 27th birthday at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City: Emily Heller Birthday Show

10:00 pm ($7): Singing improvisors at The Magnet using an interview with an audience member to craft The Made-Up Musical

[TOP PICK] 10:30 pm ($10): Fran Gillespie, Jon Gabrus, Sue Galloway, Matt Fisher, Craig Rowin, Nate Lang, and other superb improvisors at UCB Chelsea making up scenes about an audience member’s legal dispute: The Law Firm: Law & Disorder

10:30 pm ($5): NYC comics (not announced) performing at UCB East hosted by Emily Axford, D’Arcy Carden, Alden Ford, Brandon Scott Jones, and/or Justin Tyler: Gentrify

11:00 pm ($8): Sketch host Meredith Hackman and her many friends promise “Despair. Pride. Heartbreak. Comedy.” at The PIT downstairs lounge: The Saddest Sketch Show

11:00 pm ($5): Dan Hodapp (Jimmy Fallon, UCBT’s sketch troupe Beige and musical Newsadoozies, co-producer of PIT improv show The Scene, co-star of smash FringeNYC show Tail! Spin!), NYU belly dancers, and more performing at the Richmond Shephard Theatre (309 East 26th Street) hosted by Caitlin Bitzegaio and friends: The Gadget Hour

[TOP PICK] [FREE] Midnight: NYC stand-ups—sometimes stellar ones—pushing boundaries for a show designed for looseness and experimentation at The Creek upstairs theatre in Queens’ Long Island City with hosts Jacqueline Novak and Chris Laker: Permission to Fail

[FREE] Midnight: A weekly chance for you to shine at The Magnet, as students and veteran improvisors share the stage to form “rare and wonderful one-night-only teams,” with sign-up starting at 11:30 pm: Magnet Mixer

Midnight ($5): A three-person improv competition at UCB East hosted by Brian Glidewell, Josh Patten, and Ben Rameaka: Three for All

[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. Plus it’s hosted by members of Maude troupe Fambly, typically including such wonderful talents as Nicole Byer and Veronica Osorio: Liquid Courage

For more, please visit HyReviews.com.


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