Upcoming Shows

  • September 4, 2014 8:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
  • September 4, 2014 9:00 pmThe Comedy Attic
  • September 5, 2014 7:00 pmThe Comedy Works
  • September 5, 2014 8:00 pmThe N Crowd
  • September 5, 2014 8:00 pmCrazy Cow Comedy
  • September 5, 2014 8:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
  • September 5, 2014 9:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
  • September 6, 2014 7:30 pmComedy Sportz Philadelphia
  • September 6, 2014 8:00 pmCrazy Cow Comedy
  • September 6, 2014 9:30 pmThe Comedy Works
  • September 6, 2014 10:00 pmComedy Sportz Philadelphia
  • September 6, 2014 10:30 pmImprov Comedy: PHIT House Teams
  • September 11, 2014 8:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
  • September 11, 2014 9:00 pmThe Comedy Attic
  • September 12, 2014 7:00 pmThe Comedy Works
  • September 12, 2014 8:00 pmCrazy Cow Comedy
  • September 12, 2014 8:00 pmThe N Crowd
  • September 12, 2014 8:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
  • September 12, 2014 9:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
  • September 13, 2014 7:30 pmComedy Sportz Philadelphia
  • September 13, 2014 8:00 pmCrazy Cow Comedy
  • September 13, 2014 9:30 pmThe Comedy Works
  • September 13, 2014 10:00 pmComedy Sportz Philadelphia
  • September 13, 2014 10:30 pmImprov Comedy: PHIT House Teams
  • September 18, 2014 8:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
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Philly Comedy Round-up, Vol. 80

News

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.

Shows

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.

This Sunday Bedtime Stories Presents: Guy Fieri’s Phantabulous Phood Phestival at Connie’s Ric Rac. The show will feature sketches, characters, and all around weirdness around the theme of the Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives host.

All this week Philly Improv Theater will host shows at the Shubin Theater (407 Bainbridge St.) You can check out their full calendar online.

If you have any Philly comedy news worth mentioning – send it our way with an email to contact@witout.net

Gregg Gethard Has Some Ideas

Are you producing a comedy show in Philadelphia?  Bedtime Stories creator Gregg Gethard has some ideas he’d like to try to make Philly comedy more attractive to new audiences, and he’d like to see the rest of us trying ‘em out, too. Read below, and feel free to add your own opinions and suggestions in the comments.

by Gregg Gethard

The Holiday Inn in East Somerville, MA is located in the absolute ass end of greater Boston. Do you know where the car rental return places are down near the airport? That’s essentially where this Holiday Inn is located.

However, this past weekend, it was the home of a joint comedy show between The Union Square Roundtable and The Chris Gethard Show. Over 80 intrepid comedy nerds made the trip to a part of the area that is a vortex of nothing. And while both the USRT (which is to Boston comedy what Bedtime Stories and The Theme Show are to Philly) and The Chris Gethard Show have their followings, the main selling point for the show was the swimming pool.

The USRT folks rented out the hotel’s pool area, which also has wall-climbing, ping-pong, foosball and a basketball hoop. It also had space for a video projector and for a band to play. It was a comedy show in one of the most bizarre venues imaginable.

It also taught me a valuable lesson: We need to do a ton better in marketing our product to the Philadelphia audience. And one of the ways to do so is in our choice of venues.

We often complain in Philly comedy about our audiences, which are in most cases other performers and family and friends. We’ve complained at length about a lack of media attention (although that has gotten a LOT better) but we really need to do a lot on ourselves to market our shows beyond “Facebook invites/e-mails/press releases.”

Here are some thoughts. I plan on doing a lot of these with Bedtime Stories but feel free to steal them (or give me ideas to steal) because it’s for the greater good:

Continue reading Gregg Gethard Has Some Ideas

Philly Comedy Round-up, Vol. 74

This Wednesday at Chris’ Jazz Cafe (1421 Sansom St.) the Tight Six crew will host Not Jazz 2, an evening of stand-up comedy featuring John Nunn, Mary Radzinski, Dan Scully, Trevor Cunnion, Gregg Gethard, and Keane Cobb.

The Sideshow Presents: Iron Lung’s 2 Year Anniversary Show/Party  this Friday at The Arts Parlor (1170 S. Broad St). The show will feature improv from Iron LungKid Twist, Cock Hat, and Bed Savage as well as sketch from The Flat Earth and stand-up from Sidney Gantt.

Comedian and ventriloquist Jeff Dunham will bring his array of characters to perform at the Wells Fargo Center (3601 S. Broad St.) this Friday. Tickets are available online.

In addition to their regular, weekly shows ComedySportz Presents: Adrift and ComedySportz’ The Blue Show will be held this Friday at The Adrienne Theater (2030 Sansom St.) ComedySportz Presents is “an ongoing series of fun, new comedy shows featuring your favorite CSz Players and Philadelphia comedians.” Always on the last Friday of every month The Blue Show promises to feature “your favorite players doing stuff no Brown Bag could ever rectify.”

The Center Square Fire Company (1298 Skippack Pike, Blue Bell PA) is celebrating their 100th anniversary this Saturday with a comedy show featuring stand-up from The Legendary WID, Mike Morse, Robin Fox, and Grover Silcox. Tickets for the show can be purchased online and include a souvenir cup, beer, soda, and snacks.

Jim Gaffigan visits Philadelphia for a show at the Tower Theater (69th and Ludlow) this Saturday. Tickets can be purchased online.

The Captain Action Comedy Show makes its Saturday debut this week at the Conshohocken Cafe (521 Fayette St. Conshohocken) with a show featuring Jim Ginty, Jon DelCollo, Aaron Nevins, Dave Terruso, and Dan Vetrano.

This Sunday Bedtime Stories Presents: Behind the Scenes at a Soft Rock Radio Station in Nahua, NH at Connie’s Ric Rac (1132 S. 9th St.). The show will feature comedians telling the stories behind WHFMTOWNDZ-FM (The Breeze On Top of the Mountain Near Nashua) — the number two rated soft rock/adult contemporary radio station in New Hampshire’s second biggest radio market.

ComedySportz for Kids — a “fun-sized version of our long-running comedy show only shorter, sillier and kiddy-er” will be this Sunday at The Adrienne Theater (2030 Sansom St.) The monthly comedy show for children will take place at 11 am. Tickets can be purchased online.

Philadelphia Live Arts Festival & Philly Fringe are looking for new artists. Live Arts will select up to 5 artists through an audition process. If selected, artists will be presented in a showcase format for two nights, will receive a stipend of $500 and 5 hours of rehearsal time in the LAB in preparation for their performance. Live Arts is seeking work which demonstrates a commitment to forward thinking ideas and aesthetics. Any live performance genre is acceptable including theater, dance, music and performance art. Visit www.livearts-fringe.org/jumpstart to sign up and read the guidelines, eligibility, and FAQs.

If you have any Philly comedy news worth mentioning – send it our way with an email to contact@witout.net

“You know, that guy from Christmas.” by Aaron Nevins

Here’s the latest video from local comic Aaron Nevins, which premiered at this past Sunday’s Bedtime Stories Presents: Christmas Eve at a Delco WaWa. The video stars comedian/storyteller Hillary Rea, stand-ups T.J. Hurley and Chris O’Connor, and two adorable children.

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 contact@witout.net so we can share it!

Aaron Nevins: Cupcakes

Cupcakes is a video from Philadelphia comedian Aaron Nevins that debuted at last Sunday’s Bedtime Stories Gets Revenge. Watch as Nevins seeks out a former classmate he’s held a grudge against for far too long. Enjoy.

“Do You Like Magic?” – Interview with Gregg Gethard, Creator of ‘Bedtime Stories’

by Brandon Ryan

“Imagine every comic in Philadelphia is a marble, and all of us together make up a bag of marbles. My mentality is, if all the marbles in the bag are black, what can I do to be the white marble? I don’t want to just be up on stage telling jokes, I don’t want to just be up there in a sketch. What I want to do is mess with, tinker with, the format of stand-up.” —Gregg Gethard

On Sunday evening Philadelphia’s Italian Market is a beast laid to rest. The produce stands that dot the length of Ninth Street are silent and still, bound over with tarpaulin and tattered sheets of plastic. Bags of garbage line the alleys tucked between shuttered storefronts. They rustle in the night’s gusts. The gutters blossom odors rich and reeking: spoiling flowers and meats, industrial grade sanitizers a macabre imitation of lemon, the unmistakable fetor of urine. Neon light puddles on the sidewalk in front of what few restaurants and bars, most advertising deeply discounted cervezas and food, remain open. It is here, to the sidewalk, to the street, that Gregg Gethard, or, perhaps, more accurately, his alter-ego, Jaykob Strange, has led the whole of Connie’s Ric-Rac.

“Do you like magic?!”

Gregg/Jaykob’s voice is tremulous. On a night where the air’s chill hovered just below menacing, he stands in nothing more than boxer shorts and a kimono, a golden sash loosely knotted at his waist.

“I was once the official street magician of Auntie Anne’s Pretzels!”

Gregg/Jaykob raises his staff skyward. Had I not mentioned his staff? The one topped with a skull and whose length is meant to resemble a human spinal column. The staff is plastic, be assured, the kind sold by the dozens in Halloween costume outlets. He alternates between waving it at the crowd and the traffic passing just inches behind him. At one point he stops his act entirely to kindly direct traffic down a one-way street.

“Tonight I am here to declare my revenge on Auntie Anne’s!”

Revenge is the theme of tonight’s Bedtime Stories, a monthly show that Gethard originally started in 2007 and is, after a nine-month hiatus, now relaunching. He and I, along with his wife, Ilana, at the show’s close walked to Underdogs to talk about Bedtimes Stories’ development and evolution, why it disappeared, and why he’s ready to bring it back.

Brandon Ryan: How did Bedtime Stories come about?

Gregg Gethard: When I originally started Bedtime Stories there was this explosion of… There were always a lot of people doing stand-up, there weren’t really a lot of people in sketch, but even that was starting to pick up, and a lot of people started improv, but what happened more than anything were those worlds, those disciplines started combining.

BR: Is that why the show has such an eclectic feel to it?

GG: That is exactly why the show has such an eclectic feel to it. I initially wanted it to be just comedy storytelling, but there weren’t enough performers to support that or who could do it, and so I opened it up which worked out in a major way because then a lot of interesting, cool, smart, and funny people all started doing the show.

BR: What made you decide to end Bedtime Stories when you did in 2011?

GG: It went away for a few reasons. The main reason was that at the time I was commuting to New York for work, and there was the stress not only of organizing a show, but then also of writing my own material to perform. But another reason, and maybe the more important one to me was that the show got stale. I mean, a lot of people took the show seriously and did really well, but then there were also people who just kind of like, like it was just there for them and they took it for granted. See, the show was a lot of fun and a lot of magic when we were getting to know one another, but more importantly when everyone was working to discover their voice, and how they were going to perform.

BR: So you liked, when the show first started, how vibrant and different and kind of disparate the acts were?

GG: Exactly. And so a couple of month’s ago I performed in the Philly Improv Theater’s PRO-MANIA 2K12 at the Adrienne, and I had such a blast working on this show, and it was great and it was so much fun, I met so many new people. And then I also started working in Philadelphia again and started going to open mics, meeting all these new comics and they were trying to find… They were in that phase, trying to find their voice.

BR: And you felt like you wanted to give these new voices a chance to develop?

GG: Well since there’s this new crop of kids coming up, they are having a lot of fun with it, I feel like since I’ve organized and held shows before that I can help them, can kind of give them a structure to work within. I want to help people who don’t have a chance to perform their stuff elsewhere, to have a spot for them. And even tonight, my friend Kevin, that was the first time he ever performed comedy. He lives up in the Lehigh Valley, there’s not a ton of places to perform comedy up there… So I thought he was a funny dude, I wanted him to do it. And there’s this other thing that I used to do with Bedtime Stories and then I stopped doing and I’m going to hold myself to it this time, is I want to get as many new people to do it as possible. I want people to see how great comedy can be in Philadelphia, I don’t want people to get tied into this whole contest that it can a lot of times be. I want people to see that you know, “I can do comedy. It can be as weird as I want it to be. And I don’t have to worry about impressing So&So to try to get X-stage time at Y-venue.”

BR: Was there something that kind of spurred this sentiment? That you wanted to help new comics?

GG: Well, I was at this open mic. And it was this kid’s first night. And it was big for him. And so he performed, did his stuff, he started to stumble and stammer, he took out his phone to see his notes. He’s, for all intents and purposes, having your average first performance. This is nothing new. We’ve all been there. But then the kid leaves the stage, and one of the guys who was hosting the open mic just starts ripping on him. And I thought, like, how would this help this kid at all? So I want to do the opposite of that. I want new comics to feel safe, and like they’re supported. And I mean, there’s this thing that the veteran comics do, and I’m guilty of it to, where they kind of exclude the newcomers, but I feel like it’s our job, kind of, to help these new kids, to help them step up to the table and talk with them and help them figure things out and give pointers and advice. And that’s one of the reasons I want to do Bedtime Stories. To give them that.

BR: What do you have slated for Bedtime Stories?

GG: There’s one Bedtime Stories I’m really excited for. It’s going to be in February and it’s going to be called “The Feral Millionaire.” And so what it is is I came up with this idea of…

Ilana Gethard: Um, No.

GG:

IG: You had been researching feral pets!

GG: I’m really into feral animals and feral pets.

IG: And then I would come home and he would explain to me what you would have to do to have a pet raccoon.

GG: Or like a pet ocelot. Like the licenses you need.

BR: And this brought you to “The Feral Millionaire.”

GG: Yes! So what it is is from there I came up with this idea… I’m kind of obsessed with rich people, rich people come up in my comedy a lot. I kind of own a monopoly on faberge egg-related comedy. So we came up with this story of this boy who was abandoned by his mom, who had a dream of becoming an Assistant Human Relations Manager for a regional supermarket chain. And he was adopted by owls. He receives this kind of genteel, owl upbringing. And so one day his owl brother goes to retrieve an egg, which turns out to be a faberge egg, and so the family goes to find this faberge egg and finds this Owl-Boy. And so now he’s torn between two worlds. But what really excites me is that what I’m going to do is outline the plot and every Bedtime Story or sketch or video will be a plot point. And I’m pairing with a group in town called Mighty Writers, and we’re going to raise money for them, but we were also talking about having come of the kids write some of the stories and performing. I think it’ll be great for the kids and I’m excited to see what the other comedians and writers bring to the show.

The next ‘Bedtime Stories’ (“A Christmas Eve at a Delco WaWa”) will be on December 16th at 7pm at Connie’s Ric-Rac (1132 S. Ninth Street, Philadelphia). Admission is $5.

Philly Comedy Round-up, Vol. 64

David Ray Agyekum has been named one of Comedy Centrals Comics to Watch (page available at 4pm today) for 2012. David and the other comics on the list will be live tweeting about the show today at 4pm. You can follow David on Twitter for more.

This week, Comedy Month Philadelphia continues with the 5th Annual Philly Sketchfest. The festival kicks off tonight at 8:00 at The Prince Music Theater (1412 Chestnut St.) and continues through Saturday night. Tickets are available online.

The Philadelphia Citypaper ran a cover story last week on comedian Corey Cohen. The article covers Cohen’s background in comedy and current work as a promoter and host of The Big Show at Underground Arts (1200 Callowhill St.)

This Sunday, Gregg Gethard‘s comedy-show-based-around-a-theme Bedtime Stories will make its return to Connie’s Ric Rac (1132 S. 9th St.) This month, the theme of the show will be Revenge and will feature performances from many Philly comedy favorites. The show will also feature the final episode of The Holding Court Podcast, a comedy and basketball show co-hosted by Gethard and Aaron Hertzog.

Nominations are now open for the 2013 WitOut Awards for Philadelphia Comedy. Performers may nominate up to three choices in 13 different categories for the awards, which will be held on January 13, 2013 at World Cafe Live. Nominations will be open until November 30.

WitOut is now accepting submissions from performers and comedy fans for our Top Five of 2012 list series. We are encouraging anyone to write about their favorite moments, shows, performers, sketches, quotes, or anything at all to help us recap and remember the past year in Philadelphia comedy.