Ten Reasons Why You Should Check Out the Sixth Annual Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival
by Arielle Gordon
Eugene Mirman has 10 Reasons and… (more by David Andrako)
As we announced recently, the sixth annual Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival just announced its lineup. With so many comedy options every week in New York, here are ten reasons you should see some shows at EMCF this year:
- The festival started as a joke when Mike Birbiglia and producer Julie Smith suggested that it would be ridiculous to have a festival named after Eugene Mirman. Six years and various tours around the country later, it’s still happening, and it’s still one of the strongest comedy festivals around. This year’s lineup is stronger than ever, featuring everyone from Jim Gaffigan to The Daily Show producer Jena Friedman. Support ironic festival titles. Go see some shows at the Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival this year.
- NPR diehards will be happy to learn that Ira Glass, host of NPR’s This American Life will be making an appearance in the first show of the festival, the aptly titled “Urbane Comedy Hour.” It promises to be a hilarious show that you can brag to your friends about, featuring Jim Gaffigan, Wyatt Cenac, Eugene Mirman and more.
- It’s the only festival that features accurate show titles, such as the “Comics Marc Maron Will Probably Resent in the Next Couple of Years” Show, featuring up-and-coming comedians such as Adam Newman, Jim Tews, Kate Berlant, and many more who will definitely keep the podcast pundit up at night.
- Eugene brought the festival to Boston this year, with the help of $5,000 in Kickstarter donations. In order to raise that money, Eugene promised (and delivered) some crazy perks, including “an autographed headshot of Eugene that says, ‘AMERICA’S LITTLE DARLING’ at the bottom,” and “your name will be printed in the festival guide, in small print, as Racist.” If he’s willing to go to those lengths to bring Kristen Schaal to Boston, who knows what insane things he’s willing to do to make this year’s return to Brooklyn the best festival yet.
- Eugene is bringing back Invite Them Up, a legendary weekly stand up show that has featured everyone from Aziz Ansari to Chelsea Peretti. He and Bobby Tisdale host the show, which so far has Michael Che and Mehran Khaghani billed. More great standups are definitely going to be added, so be sure to get tickets before it sells out.
- Kristen Schaal and Eugene Mirman both released their first full length Comedy Central specials this year, so this festival is a great time to test if the fame has gone to their heads. Will Kristen wear a diamond-studded dress to Hot Tub with Kurt and Kristen? Will Eugene bathe in champagne onstage while Yo La Tengo perform live behind him? Probably not, but who knows?! Only attendees of the festival will find out.
- Pretty Good Friends is a show near and dear to my heart and to the hearts of comedy nerds everywhere (probably). Every Sunday at Union Hall, Eugene and Kristen (until she ceremoniously moved to LA) hosted this awesome standup showcase. Well, it’s rearing its glorious head again, closing out the festival with the cast of Bob’s Burgers and a premiere of the new season of the show. Get tickets now before you’re jealous of everyone who got them before they sold out.
- Last year’s festival featured John Oliver, H Jon Benjamin (in a fedora! And in armor!), John Mulaney, Sarah Silverman, Demetri Martin, and so much more. And a naked guy! For sure, the sixth anniversary will bring just as many big-name standups, all while keeping it weird with surprise guests and show titles that plead with its comedians to stay in New York.
- Two years ago, Andrew Bird made a surprise appearance at the EMCF. Who’s next? Belle and Sebastian? Stephin Merritt? The Velvet Underground (probably not)?! In any event, this may be the only comedy festival to feature surprise musical acts on a show hosted by Michael Showalter, which should be reason enough to check it out.
- Eugene is one of the hardest working Brooklyn comedians out there. He’s constantly working out material at Union Hall, The Bell House, and other local venues, and he’s kept his festival there every year. He does great work with 826NYC, and he is very nice in his responses to mail sent to his Dear Eugene email address. He’s a good person. Support his festival, won’t you?
In related news, Eugene Mirman, John Hodgman and Kristen Schaal are going on tour!