comedy roundup: John Cleese, ‘The Last OG,’ NYC Podfest, Anthony Atamanuik, more
So much comedy happens in NYC it’s hard to keep up. Here’s this week’s roundup of comedy stuff going on in the city. Be sure to check out last week’s roundup for more, and you can check out our comedy tag for still more.
One of the highlights of last month's episodics competition at SXSW was the premiere of Tracy Morgan's highly anticipated new show, The Last OG. Created by Jordan Peele and co-starring Cedric the Entertainer and Tiffany Haddish, the show absolutely brought down the packed house at The Paramount Theater. It's also the perfect vehicle for Morgan's TV comeback after a car crash left him in critical condition 2014 – Morgan plays a former drug dealer who returns to Brooklyn after decades in prison to find that everything has changed. Bed-Stuy gentrification jokes abound, and Tiffany Haddish is a perfect foil to Morgan's brashness as an accomplished single mother of two who now works in the non-profit world. While the show has had several premieres, audiences across the country will finally get to see it themselves this Tuesday, April 3, when it premieres on TBS at 10:30 PM. Watch the trailer:
Another exciting Tuesday television event is the premiere of Anthony Atamanuik's one-hour Trump special, the Make America Great-A-Thon, a "telethon" to raise money for things Congress won't fund. In addition to Atamanuik as Trump, Kathy Griffin will guest star as Kellyanne Conway, with Griffin Dunne stopping by as Robert Mueller. Executive producer Peter Grosz will also appear as Mike Pence. The whole thing goes down Tuesday, April 3 at 11 PM on Comedy Central.
As we announced last week, David Cross has added three new shows at the Bell House in April and May. Tickets are still available for next week's show on Wednesday, April 11. Later that week, Michael Ian Black will bring his stand up to The Bell House on April 13 (tickets). This week, fans can catch Black as a guest on several live podcasts as part of the 2018 NYC Podfest. The NYC Podfest brings everyone from Matthew Broderick to Zach Braff to the Abrons Arts Center from April 6 to April 8 for three days of comedy and entertainment podcast tapings. Check out the full lineup of podcasts here and there are more details in our daily picks below.
In other recently announced news, John Cleese is continuing to host screenings of Monty Python & The Holy Grail and there are ones happening at Englewood, NJ's Bergen PAC on July 19, Asbury Park's Convention Hall on July 20 and Brooklyn's King's Theatre on July 22. Tickets are on sale now and all dates are here.
MONDAY, APRIL 2
Future Forms @ Alphaville
Hosted by Julio Torres (SNL), Mary Houlihan, Joe Rumrill, and Sam Taggart, this free monthly showcase consistently brings new and established stand ups together for a night of comedy and karaoke. This month's lineup includes Clare O’Kane (Viceland), Dewayne Perkins (Conan), Nate Fernald (The Half Hour), Rachel Pegram (Don’t Think Twice), James Bewley, Meaghan Strickland (iO Chicago), and Nathan Min (The Tonight Show).
Butterboy @ Littlefield
Yet another fantastic Monday offering, this weekly show features hosts Jo Firestone, Maeve Higgins, and Aparna Nancherla and a rotating cast of comedians. This week, they include Clark Jones, Casey James Salengo, Nate Fernald, Claudia Cogan, Cara Weinberger, Marie Faustin (tickets).
Running Late with Scott Rogowsky @ The Gramercy Theatre
While you may know him as the affable and talkative host of HQ Trivia, Scott Rogowsky has long been the host of this live talk show. First hosted at the PIT, this show migrated to the Gramercy Theatre as Rogowsky became a household name. This month's installment features an amazingly eclectic group of guests – Soledad O'Brien, Desus & Mero, Marc Summers and Nikki Glaser (tickets).
TUESDAY, APRIL 3
Dan + Joe + Charles Show @ The Shanty (79 Richardson Street, Brooklyn)
Hosted inside the NY Distilling Co, this comedy show hosted by Dan Licada, Joe Pera, and Charles Gould quietly brings some of the biggest rising stars in comedy each week. This week is no exception, with stand up from Brandon Wardell, Nate Fernald (The Late Late Show), Annie Donley (IFC), and Clare O’Kane (Viceland).
Judah Friedlander @ Gotham Comedy Club
In addition to the very funny Judah Friedlander, this more traditional comedy club showcase also features stand up from Myq Kaplan, Jessica Kirson, and Matthew Broussard (tickets).
My Hometown @ Union Hall
Hosted by Ilana Michelle Rubin and Lana Schwartz, this show features comedians talking about their hometown. This month's installment includes Sydnee Washington (MTV), Jo Firestone, Josh Gondelman (John Oliver), Eudora Peterson (Splitsider), and Fareeha Khan (MTV) (tickets).
WEDNESDAY, APRIL 4
$5 Funnies @ The Stand NYC
Catch some of New York's busiest club comics at a fraction of the cost at this weekly Wednesday showcase. This week features Mark Norman, Rich Vos, Kevin Brennan, and Joe List (tickets).
Full Moon Comedy @ Starr Bar
This free ($5 suggested donation) showcase is hosted by New York comedy veterans Carmen Lagala, Kendall Farrell, and Sam Evans. Featured comedians include <Erik Bergstrom (Comedy Central Stand-Up), Mehran Khaghani (NBC's Last Comic Standing), Sam Taggart (Brooklyn Magazine's 50 Funniest), and Kenice Mobley (Laughs on FOX) (free ticket reservations).
THURSDAY, APRIL 5
Hello. It Doesn't Matter. Book Release Party and Variety Show @ Union Hall
Derrick C. Brown is a poet, but has always veered on the side of the comedic, and has the touring credentials to prove it, having opened for everyone from Eugene Mirman to David Cross. To celebrate the release of his newest collection, Hello. It Doesn't Matter, he has invited some of those funny friends to Union Hall for a night of comedy and music. The show features musician Emily Wells, as well as the bizarre comedic stylings of "Fuggedabuddies," A.K.A. the sketch comedy duo Jon Glaser and H. Jon Benjamin. Amber Tamblyn, Mahogany Browne, and Elna Baker round out the show (tickets).
Chris Gethard Tells Fuckin' Jokes Sometimes @ The Brick
The Brooklyn Comedy Collective has been a welcome new addition to the Brooklyn comedy scene, and this week's show is no exception. Chris Gethard may be better known for his weekly variety show on truTV, but he's also a damn good storyteller. See him practice the latter at this $10 comedy show (tickets).
Female Comedians (with Tits!) @ Tip Top Bar & Grill
Mary Cella and Janet Hyde host this free comedy show with a great collection of comics, male and female. This installment features Tom Thakkar (Conan), Carolyn Busa, Clare O'Kane, Rob Haze (Tonight Show), and one of my favorite newcomers to the New York scene, Rebecca O'Neal.
Seth Meyers Writers: Crate Night w/ Set Fires @ UCB Hell's Kitchen
Watch the Late Night With Seth Meyers staff writers perform improv at this monthly showcase at UCB. Featuring Sal Gentile, Mike Scollins, Seth Reiss, Ambur Ruffin, and Ben Warheit (tickets).
FRIDAY, APRIL 6
The George Lucas Talk Show @ UCB East
Connor Ratliff (The Chris Gethard Show) imagines the legendary filmmaker as a talk show host in this monthly UCB show, with Griffin Newman as his trusty sidekick, Jar Jar Binks. This month, they interview Rebecca Drysdale (Key & Peele) as well as Mike Carlsen, Titus's charming boyfriend on Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt (tickets).
The Big Weird Comedy Show @ Secret Loft (location announced day of show)
Hosted by James Salengo (Comedy Central Half Hour), Ryan Beck (The Daily Show), and Will Winner, this secret revue features Jo Firestone. Mike Recine (Conan) John Rosenberger, Tito Garza (Funny Or Die), and Tanael Joachim. $5 gets you access to the secret location (in Greenwich Village, near the 14th Street/6th Avenue subway), as well as pizza (tickets).
Yardsale Comedy Night @ Union Hall
At this grab-bag show, comedians test out their characters, sketches, and stand up. With a heavy focus on the absurd with comedians like Annie Donley (The Chris Gethard Show), Conner O'Malley (Late Night with Seth Meyers), and Gary Richardson (SNL), the show is likely not for the feint of heart. Other comedians on the lineup include John Reynolds (Search Party), Carmen Christopher (Late Night with Seth Meyers), Mitra Jouhari (The President Show), Ana Fabrega, Anthony Oberbeck, Bardia Salimi, Devin Bockrath, Drennen Quinn, Joey Dundale, Matt Barats, Steph Cook, Wes Haney, and Andrew Tisher (tickets).
SATURDAY, APRIL 7
Employee of the Month @ Abrons Arts Center (Part of NYC Podfest)
Offering a wide variety of podcasts from across the comedic and political spectrum, the sixth annual NYC Podfest kicks off this week and continues through April 8. On Saturday, Catie Lazarus hosts her monthly live show/weekly podcast Employee of the Month, where she features guests who have really interesting jobs. For this taping, her guests are Masha Gessen (The New Yorker), Martha Plimpton (Raising Hope, The Goonies), Anthony Atamanuik (The President Show), as well as musician and actor Lucy Wainwright Roche (tickets).
How To Be a Person @ Abrons Arts Center (Part of NYC Podfest)
Mike Drucker (The Onion, The Tonight Show) and Jess Dweck (The Tonight Show, Late Night with Seth Meyers) bring their weekly podcast to the stage to "teach them how to be normal human beings." This week's guest, Michael Ian Black, knows precisely how to act like a normal human being, even if he engages in one too many Twitter wars (tickets).
Kevin McDonald's Kevin McDonald Show @ Abrons Art Center (Part of NYC Podfest)
Michael Ian Black and Jordan Klepper join Kevin McDonald (Kids In the Hall) for a live taping of his podcast, which blends sketch comedy, interviews, and live music. For the latter, he's recruited none other but "Teenage Dirtbag" singers Wheatus to join them as a musical guest (tickets).
The Dirty Show @ Q.E.D. Astoria
|Hosted by Ben Conrad and Lucas Connolly, this free showcase has an emphasis on "blue" humor, and will feature Josh Gondelman (Last Week Tonight), Daniel Simonsen (Edinburgh Comedy Festival) Kerry Coddett (MTV's Joking Off), and Lorelei Ramirez (Writer for VICE) (tickets)
Not Quite Midnight @ Pine Box Rock Shop
This half stand up, half talk show format, hosted by Courtney Maginnis and Chris Calogero, features different stand ups who tell jokes and then take it to the couch for a brief interview. This month's guests include Rob Cantrell (Last Comic Standing), Tyler Fischer, Sydnee Washington, and Frank Nelson.
WFMU Comedy Night @ Monty Hall
Few details exist about this event, but Jo Firestone will definitely be there! And as a rule, anything WFMU is probably good (tickets).
SUNDAY, APRIL 8
Two Beers In: A Political Roundtable @ Abrons Arts Center (Part of NYC Podfest)
UCB veterans Cody Lindquist and Charlie Todd bring their political happy hour to the Podfest, featuring guest stars Josh Sharp (The Opposition with Jordan Klepper) Jasmine Pierce (The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon) and Shawna Thomas (Vice News) (tickets).
Little Known Facts @ Abrons Arts Center (Part of NYC Podfest)
Actress Ilana Levine brings a different guest from the entertainment industry on each episode of her podcast to talk about the 'biz. But this is no normal taping – her special guest at the Podfest is none other than Matthew Broderick. Will she ask him about that time he committed manslaughter in Northern Ireland, or what he thinks of his wife's Sex & The City co-star Cynthia Nixon's bid for governor? Only one way to find out which "little known facts" will come up at this taping (tickets).
An Evening with Alex Inc. @ Abrons Arts Center (Part of NYC Podfest)
Alex Inc. is the latest show from Zach Braff, about a man who quits his job to start a business. The show itself is based on Alex Blumberg's podcast StartUp, which documents Blumberg attempt at doing just that with his startup Gimlet Media. The two will discuss the new television show and the process of creating a business at this podcast taping (tickets).
Free Puppies – Comedy Hour For People Who Like Puppies @ The Lantern Comedy Club
Though this stand up show features no real puppies, it does feature some of the best up-and-coming comics, including Aparna Nancherla (Corporate), Aby James (HBO's Crashing), Jacob Williams (The Late Show with Stephen Colbert) Ashley Gavin (Hulu's Laughs), Troy Bond, and Corinne Fisher (tickets).
Bad News: It's a Comedy Show @ Sing Sing Ave A
In case you missed Aparna at the puppies show, she's also on this news-format stand up revue at Sing Sing Karaoke. Hosts Carmen Lagala, Kevin Froleiks, and Alex Ptak have also recruited Mike Brown (San Francisco Sketchfest), Hannah Boone (Bridgetown Comedy Festival), and Josh Johnson (Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon) to give their takes on a standard nightly news show.
The Whole Story Presented by Mike Birbiglia @ Union Hall
Mike Birbiglia is arguably the king of the comedic storytelling format, preferring personal anecdotes to observational comedy at every turn. He's touring his latest special, "The New One," around the country this spring, but before that, he's passing the proverbial storytelling baton to two very deserving comedians, Jacqueline Novak and Chris Laker, at this storytelling showcase (tickets).
If that isn't enough, there are always great offerings at the Comedy Cellar – highlights this week include Matteo Lane, Judah Friedlander, and Mike Birbiglia, who has two shows on Wednesday. Reservations for any of those shows can be made here.