Comedian Alex Grubard recently won the LOL at The Grand competition in Wilmington, DE. Grubard took home a cash prize for his win, but don’t hold that against him the next time he tells you that he doesn’t have any money.
A new humor blog, Kitty Kat Booty is being run by Philadelphia-area comedians and La Salle students Kyle Harris and Brian McCarthy. The blog aims to post original humor pieces as well as interviews with comedians. The site recently interviewed comedian Steve Hofstetter.
Monday Evening Raw makes its debut tonight at Ray’s Happy Birthday Bar (1200 E. Passyunk Ave.) The stand-up showcase will feature sets from: Ryan Crawford, M. Jacob Alvarez, Dan Vetrano, Jay West, and TJ Hurley and will be hosted by Mike Logan.
Free Improv at Connie’s Ric Rac returns this week with another improv showcase featuring 15-minute sets from eight groups. This month’s show will feature: Deleted Scenes, Those Two Nice Ladies, Cake Bear, Bad James, DupliCate, No Wait, Dennis, Frank, Caitlin, Stills & Nash, Kait and Andrew+
This Wednesday Accidents Will Happen will be taken over by The Panic Hour. The show will be hosted by Steve Miller-Miller, NA Poe, and David Piccolomini and will feature comedy from: Alex Pearlman, Blythe Randolph, Tim Unkenholz, Kevin Hebbeler, Robert X, Jay West,and Alison Zeidman. As always, the show will be followed by an open mic.
JP Boudwin’s sketch comedy showcase Now Time! will have its second show at L’etage (624 S. 6th St.) this week with a show featuring The Feeko Brothers, Daring Daulton, and American Breakfast.
Kevin Hart’s Plastic Cup Boyz tour comes to Tower Theatre (Ludlow St. and S 69th St. Upper Darby) this Saturday with a show full of home-grown comedy from: Na’im Lynn, Will “Spank” Horton, Joey Wells and LaVar Walker.
Philly comedians and hosts of The Panic Hour podcast Steve Miller-Miller and N.a. Poe will be joined by frequent guest Dave Piccolomini in taking over the March edition of Bradley Beck’s Accidents Will Happen at Adobe Cafe (which will become Chaos Comedy in April, hosted by Jimmy Viola and Jon Lalu). Here’s the promo video for the show:
The waterboarding was a little much for me personally, but seeing Piccolomini gag and have to leave the room because the Bradley-Beck-jokes-as-torture was more than he could handle was pretty funny. And who doesn’t enjoy watching Alex Pearlman yell at someone?
‘False Flag: PANICxACCIDENTS‘ is Wednesday, March 6th at Adobe Cafe (1919 E. Passyunk Avenue) at 9PM. Admission is $FREE.99. An open mic will follow.
If you are a Philadelphia comedy performer that produces a podcast, web series, sketch video, humor column, or any other online content let us know by emailing us at firstname.lastname@example.org so we can share it!
A new open mic at Connie’s Ric Rac (1132 S. 9th St.) hosted by Dan Vetrano and Joe Murdock begins tonight. The stage is open to all comedy performers and the hosts also encourage bringing a video to show on the Ric Rac’s screen. Sign ups begin at 8:30 and the mic starts at 9:00.
Philly Improv Theater is now accepting applications to their Improv Conservatory class to take place this spring. The conservatory class will accept eight students to work with director Steve Kleinedler to develop a new “style of play”. At the end of the eight-week class, the ensemble will perform a one-month run of shows at PHIT. Applications are being accepted until February 28.
This Wednesday touring show Comedians at Law will visit Helium Comedy Club (2031 Sansom St. Philadelphia). The show will feature performances from lawyers-turned-stand-up-comedians Alex Barnett, J-L Cauvin, Kevin Israel, Matt Ritter. Tickets can be purchased online.
Also this Wednesday Accidents Will Happen returns to The Adobe Cafe (947 E. Passyunk Ave.) This month’s show will feature performances from: Rachel Fogletto, Dave Terruso, Dan Scully, Matt Monroe, Malwina, Bino Brown, and Tommie Turner as well as a Dating Game and the “1st annual WitAccidents Open Mic Awards!” The show begins at 9:00pm and is immediately followed by an open mic.
This Thursday Bird Text brings their comedy show back to Helium Comedy Club for a night featuring stand-up from Mike Lawrence, Doogie Horner, Mary Radzinski, and Tommy Pope plus brand new Bird Text sketches. Tickets can be purchased online.
Chase N’ Laughs Comedy/Karaoke/Fish Fry is this Saturday at Treasures Banquet Hall (5549 Germantown Ave). Doors open at 5:00pm with free martinis being served until 6:00 and comedy beginning at 8:00. Tickets can be purchased by calling 267-405-2025.
Joe Conklin’s 3rd Annual Comedy Showcase is also taking place this Saturday at Glen Mills Thornbury Rotary at Penn Oaks Country Club (150 Penn Oaks Dr. West Chester, PA). The night will feature a DJ, cocktail hour, dinner, and comedy from the “man of a thousand voices.”
This Sunday Propoganda!, a monthly comedy show from Denver, CO., will come to L’etage (624 South 6th St.) for a free show featuring comedy from: Alex Grubard, Alex Pearlman, Doogie Horner, Scott Sharp, Brett Hiker, and Ray DeVito.
Philly Improv Theater will also have shows all this week at The Shubin Theater (407 Bainbridge Street). Some of their regular shows have changed days and times so make sure you check out their full schedule online.
If you have any Philly comedy news worth mentioning – send it our way with an email to email@example.com
It’s almost time for the 2013 WitOut Awards for Philadelphia Comedy! As we get closer to the show, we’ll be rolling out a series of posts to help you get more acquainted with this year’s nominees. Read all about ’em, and then be sure to get your tickets for the big event on January 13th at World Cafe Live!
The nominees for Best Open Mic are:
Laughs on Fairmount
Time: 8:00PM – 11:00PM
Location: The Urban Saloon: 2120 Fairmount Ave., Philadelphia, PA
Hosts: Carolyn Busa and Mary Radzinski
Set: 5 minutes
Description: Join Laughs on Fairmount at the Urban Saloon on Fairmount Ave. (across from Eastern State Penitentiary). Laughs on Fairmount will be Monday nights with sign-ups for comedians beginning at 7:15pm. Show starts at 8pm in the back room.
Sketch Up or Shut Up
Schedule: The last Friday of every month (the first week of PHIT’s Shubin run)
Time: 11:00PM – 12:00AM
Location: Philly Improv Theater at The Shubin Theater, 407 Bainbridge St. Philadelphia
Host: Brian Kelly
Set: 5 minutes
Description: Free sketch comedy open mic! Come to perform or see some of Philadelphia’s best comedians try out new material. Arrive by 10:45 to sign up, and please keep sketches to five minutes or less. Free and BYOB! Sketch Up or Shut Up is hosted by Brian Kelly and was created by Meg Favreau.
Center City Comedy
Time: 9:00PM – 1:00AM
Location: Raven Lounge: 1718 Sansom St., Philadelphia, PA
Hosts: Chris Cotton and H. Foley
Set: 5 minutes
Description: Upstairs at the Raven Lounge. Featuring Philadelphia’s best stand-up talent showcasing their signature sets.
Location: Upstairs at Fergie’s Pub: 1214 Sansom Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107
Type: Stand-up, Sketch, Characters, etc.
Host: Tight Six
Set: 3.5-5 minutes (depending on total number of comics)
Description: Hilarious comedy, house band, drink specials.
Accidents Will Happen
Schedule: First Wednesday of every month, after the Accidents Will Happen showcase (9:00PM)
Location: The Adobe Cafe, 1919 E. Passyunk Ave. Philadelphia
Host: Bradley Beck
Set: 5 minutes
Description: Featuring stand-up, storytelling, and sketch comedy. All this and $5 burritos!
Tonight is the first Accidents Will Happen of 2013, hosted by Bradley Beck, Jimmy Viola and Jonathan Lalu. Comedians slated to perform are Ryan Shaner (Center City Comedy), Fastball Pitcher Bob Gutierrez (Chicago Cubs), Ryan Hill, Ryan Schutt, R. Eric Thomas (The World Exists Podcast), Phyllis Voren and Joe Bell (Tight Six).
The show starts at 9 pm at Adobe Cafe (1919 E. Passyunk Avenue), and will be followed by an open mic at 11 pm. Admission is $FREE.99.
To get you super psyched, hosts Jimmy Viola and Jonathan Lalu have made some videos:
As the year winds down, WitOut collects lists from comedy performers and fans of their favorite moments, comedians, groups, shows, etc. from the last year in Philly comedy. Top 5 of 2012 lists will run throughout December–if you’d like to write one, pitch us your list at firstname.lastname@example.org!
5. Seeing Robert X perform live for the first time at Noche
I had actually seen Robert X perform on YouTube via Reddit, and then a few months later he moved to Philly. Blew me right away.
4. All of the new mics.
Tight Six, Accidents Will Happen, Number 2 and more have all been incredible. Seeing new talent take the reigns and support each other has really lit up the scene.
3. Brendan Kennedy Week
I’ve known Brendan for years, and now he’s moving to LA. In the first week of December he was on a bunch of shows that concluded with his roast. It was the most fun I’ve ever had at a three-hour show.
2. Noche’s last mic night
I always looked forward to Noche every Tuesday. But it was time to put that baby to bed. And it was done with a bang. For two years we entertained strangers there, and I’m sad to see it go.
1. Hosting Laughs on Fairmount
I hosted laughs on Fairmount the Monday before Valentine’s Day. The day of the mic, I didn’t want to go. But I sucked it up and did it anyway. Around the 35th comic I decided I wasn’t going to do jokes anymore and started hitting on this woman in the front row. I’ve been dating her ever since.
Alex Pearlman is a local Philadelphia comedian and host of Something Witty at the Dive Bar. The next FREE showcase there is this Friday, Dec. 21st at 9pm. To watch him slowly die during most open mics, follow him on twitter: @alexpearlman
This Wednesday Tight Six expands from their weekly open mic to present Not Jazz at Chris’ Jazz Cafe (1421 Sansom St.) a show featuring “a mix of stand-up, music (not jazz), fun, not jazz, games, and other spontaneous insanity.” The show will feature comedy from Doogie Horner, Juliet Hope Wayne, Alex Grubard, Jim Ginty, Sidney Gantt, and Robert X.
Comedian and storyteller Juliet Hope Wayne has been nominated for the 2012 Philebrity Award for General Fabulousness. The Philebrity awards are determined by online poll that will be open until Wednesday, December 19 at noon.
One of the things that’s so fun about comedy is that feeling that anything can happen. Anything can be said; anything can be done. Surprise and uniqueness are your friends; the mundane is your enemy. Bradley Beck seems to be a man who understands this. The other night at Accidents Will Happen, I watched him co-host (with Sarah Morawczynski, the latest in what is apparently an ever-increasing lineup of co-hosts) what was essentially a stand-up showcase where, throughout the night, he became increasingly drunker, progressively lost layers of clothing until he was shirtless, and rattled off Polish jokes at Sarah’s expense while reading tweets from a Twitter fight he’d had on election night with numerous citizens of the states of Indiana and Kentucky.
And it’s not just Bradley’s hosting that drives this idea. The performers were just as unexpected a mix of stand-ups as one could imagine. We drifted from the storytelling of Brady Dale, to the character-based black metal comedy of Necrosexual, to the more traditional stand-up of the energetic Alex Grubard. The only thing tying the six performers’ styles together was their strong talent and a sense of originality.
Of course, the other side to comedy is structure. Don’t let me mislead you: Accidents Will Happen is certainly a well-structured show. Bradley Beck is more than competent as a host, regardless of where he is on the spectrum of intoxication. And the show, while at times chaotic, has a sense of cohesion. It takes place in the back room of the Adobe Cafe, a Southwestern-style restaurant & bar. With a small laminate wood-tiled stage (though the comedians all perform on the floor in front of it) facing a square room of tables and wire-framed, vinyl-coated chairs, you may feel like you’re watching comedy in a sort of Tex-Mex themed bingo hall. But with the dynamic stage presence of the comedians, clear and professional sound, and a generally supportive audience, you will feel lucky to be there.
After the show, I sat down with a slightly drunk Bradley Beck and started off by asking him what his show was all about:
Bradley Beck: It’s a show where we showcase some of my favorite young stand-ups and improvisers and storytellers and sketch groups from Philly. We also get performers from all over the Northeast. We also have a story that will play out over the course of the night—in between the acts—with me and a kind of a rotating team of co-hosts that usually involves me being the fool of some kind for the audience’s enjoyment.
Matt Aukamp: How long has the show been running?
BB: It’s been about nine months. This is our tenth one.
MA: How do you go about selecting all of your guests and features?
BB: Some of them are just people that I’ve been watching evolve over the stand-up scene and the storytelling scene for the last two years that I’ve been doing comedy. But some of the other acts come from [co-hosts] Alex J. Gross and Dan Vetrano. They know a lot of people from the improv and sketch scene so they’ll recommend a lot of people and I think, between the three of us, we’ve been able to get people in the room that have never worked with each other before—so many people from different genres of Philadelphia comedy come together on one stage. It’s very different from a lot of other shows.
MA: Is there an over-arching theme of the show?
BB: The over-arching theme of the show is alternative comedy. There’s been a backlash in the last couple of years, I’ve noticed, against alt. comedy. They say that stand-ups should be able to go into any room and these alt. comedy rooms kind of coddle performers, but I put this show up in defiance of that. Like, I wanted these different performers to come together under the banner that we’re doing something that’s different. We’re taking risks. And I want people to get together and it doesn’t matter what genre you are, as long as you’re doing something different, something new, something that’s going to excite the crowd—that’s the people that I want.
MA: What sets Accidents Will Happen apart from other shows in the city?
BB: I think that it’s a mixed show. I think what sets it apart is that I’m trying to foster connections between the performers, where some of the people that do the show, or even performers that have been on the show before, who maybe aren’t performing tonight and are just here, will see some of these different performers – people that they’ve never met before but live in the same city – and say, “I want to work with this person.” That’s how it started with Alex J. Gross. I’d never met him before, and I had him on the show, and I absolutely thought he was fantastic and then decided to bring him on as a full-time co-host. If it wasn’t for the show, I wouldn’t have really gotten to know him.
MA: The second half of the show is an open mic. Do you ever look at that as a place to cultivate talent for your showcase?
BB: Yeah, there’s definitely been a few performers that I’ve booked specifically because I’ve seen them on the open mic. But also I just really enjoy watching some of the younger guys and girls in their early 20s perform at the open mic. Some of the comedians that are performing tonight have been performing for just a few months and watching them every two weeks here, I’ve seen them grow as comics. And once I feel confident that they can do at least six minutes of their best material then I’ll have them on the main show in front of a bigger crowd.
MA: What are some of the stand-out moments of the show?
BB: The first time I had Necro[sexual] on. He brought up someone to do a Black Metal makeover. The first time I had Lisa Yost on. I’d been watching her perform for two years and I felt like she just put so much emotion into her performance she really threw the crowd for a loop. There’s just been so many. I’ve seen so many performers in Philly put forth a great performance in front of our crowd. These are people that I really love and…I don’t get to go out much. I’ve got two kids at home, and this is the show I would want to see. If I saw these six performers tonight on a bill, I’d say “This would be a great bill.” And this way I get to host. It’s like watching a comedy show for free.
MA: Any particularly bad moments?
BB: There was this one show I remember where I got really drunk and was shirtless by the end of the show—it was just like ten minutes ago.
MA: What, ultimately, would you like the show to become?
BB: I like the concept of having a story play out in between the acts. We’ve been doing that for a while. We had one story where we had a Battle of the Sexes. We’ve had an episode where I was fired and tried to get my job back. Tonight, obviously, we were talking about my Twitter wars and I was getting progressively drunker on stage. I want to give people something in between. I want it to be almost like a behind-the-scenes look at the drama that goes on at comedy shows but brings it to the front.
MA: Anything else you want to talk about?
BB: I just hope people come out. There’s a lot of really talented performers in Philadelphia. And I guess I look at this show, ultimately, since it’s free, as a way for people that are interested in comedy to sample what is available in Philadelphia. Since I am putting up every different genre of comedy, this is a way for you to come and say, “Oh, this is pretty interesting. Maybe I want to go to some other shows and pay for them. Maybe I want to see these performers at other shows.” And it’s a way for the performers, since it is a free show and no one’s making any money off this, it’s a way to put themselves out to people who maybe haven’t seen them before. I started the show in South Philly to see if a show could work in an area that was a little off the beaten track. I wanted to bring the show to the young, hip people that live in that neighborhood, and make it a pain in the ass for performers to come down. I wanted them to want to do this show. Since there’s no money on either side, I feel it’s a way for people that have never seen an indie comedy show to discover the alt. comedy scene in Philly. For the performers it’s a place to try new things in front of a really respectful audience. I love when people take a risk on my stage. We try to book a mix of newer acts that are excited just to get booked, and will bring their friends, and more seasoned performers who can use it as kind of an extended open mic to prep for their weekend gigs.
Accidents Will Happen occurs on the 1st Wednesday of every month at 9pm with an open mic at 11pm. South Philly Comedy Jawn, the open-mic-only spinoff of the show (open to any comedic act, with an emphasis on stand-up and storytelling), occurs on the 3rd Wednesday of every month at 10pm. Both shows are held at at the Adobe Cafe (1919 E. Passyunk Avenue). Admission is free!
Matt Aukamp is a writer, performer, and occasional improviser (The Win Show). You can usually find him bothering the world on Twitter at @mattaukamp.
Last night, the seventh annual Philly’s Phunniest Person Contest continued at Helium Comedy Club with Jim Grammond, Jim Ginty, and Andy Hudak moving on to the semi-finals. The competition continues Sunday, August 12 and Monday, August 13 with the semi-final rounds being held on Sunday, August 19 and Tuesday, August 21.
Also tonight, Free Improv at Connie’s Ric Rac celebrates its one year anniversary with a show featuring Deleted Scenes, Bad James, Cock Hat, Sleep Walking, Kait and Andrew, Medic, The Amie and Kristen Show. Doors open at 8 and the show starts at 9.
This Wednesday, Accidents Will Happen returns to Adobe Cafe for a night of comedy featuring Alex Pearlman, Darryl Charles, Jenn Tisdale, Joe Murdock, Mariya Alexander, with sketches by ManiPedi, and story from Guy Guy. As always, an open mic follows the show at 11pm.
Last night, the seventh annual Philly’s Phunniest Person Contest continued at Helium Comedy Club with Aaron Hertzog, Joey Dougherty, and Paul Easton moving on to the semi-finals. The competition continues Sunday, July 29 and the opening round continues until August 13 (full schedule here).
This Wednesday, Camp Woods Plus returns for another show at L’etage (624 South 6th St. Philadelphia) This month’s show will feature the debut of Philadelphia sketch duo Tap City along with New York group Listen, Kid! As always, the show will feature brand new material from Camp Woods.
Also this Wednesday, comedy variety show Accidents Will Happen returns to Adobe Cafe (1919 E. Passyunk Ave. Philadelphia) for a night of stand-up from Jim Grammond, Omar Scruggs, John Nunn, Rachel Bensen, Lisa Yost, storytelling from Jamie Fountaine, sketch comedy from The New Dreamz and “Black Metal Legend” Necrosexual. The show is free and begins at 9pm and is followed by an open mic at 11.
This Saturday, The Sideshow makes another appearance at The Arts Parlor (1170 South Broad St. Philadelphia). The show will feature improv from Chaperone, Hot Dog, and Iron Lung as well as clowning from Kristen Schier. The show begins at 8pm and is $5.