Philly Improv Theater’s run of shows at The Shubin continues this week with a full schedule of shows. This Wednesday, at 10pm you can catch a preview of The Monthly Hour with James Hesky, the new variety show taking over for Chip Chantry’s One Man Show (with Special Guests) which ended its run last week. The Monthly Hour promises sketch and stand-up comedy from some of the city’s best performers, as well as a topical monologue from Hesky, and sketches produced by the show’s team of writers (which include Jim Grammond, Pat House, Mary Radzinski, Darryl Charles, and Mike Gleason).
This Wednesday, Helium Comedy Club will feature Helium’s Philthiest Comedy Show – a night of mature themed comedy from Mike Rainey, Darryl Charles, Dave Terruso, Rob DeSantis, with David James as the Headliner and some special dirty guests!
The second annual March Madness Comedy Competition kicks off at the open mic at Drinker’s West on Sunday March 11. This year 72 comedians will compete at Drinker’s West, Laughs on Fairmount, Noche, and The Raven Lounge to be named champion of the tournament style competition.
On Thursday, March 15, Kenny Zimlinghaus returns to Philadelphia on his 2012 End of the World Tour. Presented by Corey Cohen Comedy, the show will be held at The Tin Angel (20 South 2nd St. Philadelphia) and will feature Zimlinghaus (known for being the co-host of “Wake Up! With Taylor” on Sirius and XM) along with John McKeever. You can purchase tickets for the event online.
Aaron Hertzog – $30,000
John McKeever – Magnum
Pete Kuempel – Dolphins
Steve Gerben – Watching Sports
Darryl Charles – Hatchet
Unfortunately, video of this bit does not exist but his exasperation at the fact that a man could murder an entire building full of people with a hatchet, complete with out-of-breath act outs was the only bit Darryl did during his run to a second place finish at this year’s Philly’s Phunniest Person Contest. Check him out live to see the hilarious bit in action.
It’s been almost an entire month since Helium Comedy Club crowned Tommy Pope 2011’s Philly’s Phunniest Person – and it’s already time for a reunion of some of the comedians that made the final round of this year’s contest. Tonight, the club will host the Philly’s Phunniest Reunion Show featuring sets from Pope, along with runner up Darryl Charles and third place finisher John McKeever, as well as comedy from fellow finalists Chip Chantry and Andy Nolan. The show starts tonight at 8 and you can buy tickets online or (and I would recommend this option) call the club at 215-496-9001, mention any of the performers names, and get free admission. Check out some videos from tonight’s performers below.
A packed crowd at Helium witnessed the cream-of-the-cream of Philadelphia comedy last night during the finals of the Philly’s Phunniest Competition. Beginning almost 2 and a half months ago with 165 comedians, the field had been whittled down to 10 Finalists, who took the stage in order to see who would walk away with the title. The was a true spectacle – each comedian was worthy of raucous laughter, wild applause, and probably a $1,000 prize, but there can only be one winner. Surely those who missed out on this will be kicking themselves for a long time… for those unfortunate souls, here’s a taste of what you missed:
Below are the first and last words spoken on stage by each of 2011’s Philly’s Funniest Finalists:
(Comedian – First Word // Last Word)
Host Dave Smith – Thanks // Night
Pat Barker – Thank // Thanks
John McKeever – Hey // You
Chip Chantry – So // Everybody
Gary Vider – Thanks // Evening
Andy Nolan – Alright // Much
Mike Rainey – Alright // Rainey
Tommy Pope – Hey // Thanks
Gordon Baker-Bone – Yeah // Night
Pat House – Thank // Night
Darryl Charles – Yay // Everybody
Headliner Big Jay Oakerson – Thank // Around
Congratulations to all ten finalists, but a little extra congratulations to Tommy Pope who deservedly was named winner of 2011’s Philly’s Funniest. And to everyone who missed the show – you’re welcome!
The results are in from the first of two semi final rounds of Helium Comedy Club’s Sixth Annual Philly’s Phunniest Person Contest.
Moving on the the finals, which will be held this Wednesday at 8:00 PM are:
John McKeever, Pat House, Mike Rainey, Gordon Baker Bone and Gary Vider
The second semi final round will be held tomorrow night, where 15 more comics vie for the last five spots in the finals. You can get tickets for tomorrow’s show, and Wednesday’s finals online.
Much can be, and has been, said about the Ministry of Secret Jokes. I was present for the show on August 8th, and since there was no oath taken beforehand, I am free to reveal events of the evening.
Below are the first and last words from each comedian who appeared on stage:
Comedian : First word / Last word
Steve Gerben: Hello / Story
It should be noted, some of the performers appeared on stage multiple times through out the night. The words listed are their first from when they first spoke into a microphone, last words are final words spoken in the entire evening.
Joe Moore is a comedy fan and sometimes-performer. You can follow him on Twitter.
John McKeever is a Philadelphia comedian who co-hosts the Bird Text Comedy Show at Helium Comedy Club with Tommy Pope and Luke Cunningham. He was recently featured in this ESPN Commercial. He only felt like answering nine of ten questions…
How and why did you get into comedy?
I started going to open mics here and there a couple of years ago but never steady. I started going all the time about a year ago because I’ve always really enjoyed the process of writing jokes and then working them out on stage for a possible laugh. I just didn’t want to get too old and regret never pursuing it full time. I also don’t think I’m fit to lead a normal 9-5 life.
How would you describe your style as a comedian? What influences and factors do you think contribute to that?
I guess I would just say my style is conversational. I’m just not a great at writing one-liners, I think that’s a really unique talent. Some people can do both really well, like Chip Chantry or Luke Cunningham, which boggles my mind. I like to just get on stage with an idea and work it out with different crowds and different tags without ever committing to a permanent structure. I just make sure I get from A to B without rambling too much. I think having a loose structure keeps me, personally, from being too rigid on stage like an actor trying to remember his lines. I also have a terrible memory.
Do you have a favorite show or venue you like to perform at? What about it makes it fun or special for you?
Do you have a single favorite moment in Philly comedy or one that stands out?
Do you have any sort of creative process that you use with your writing or your performance? Or a sort of method that you use to develop comedic material?
Do you have any favorite performers in the Philly scene? Why are they your favorites?
Do you have any bad experiences doing comedy that you can share? A particularly bad bombing or even an entire show gone haywire?
What do you think the Philly comedy scene needs to continue to grow?
Do you have any personal goals for the future as you continue to perform comedy?