Laughs on Fairmount – 8:00pm (signups at 7:15) at The Urban Saloon, 2120 Fairmount Ave., Philadelphia
The Irish Times – 7:30pm (signups at 7:00) at The Irish Times, 629 S 2nd St., Philadelphia
Joe Murdock Has Created an Event – 9:00pm (signups at 8:30) at Connie’s Ric Rac, 1132 S. 9th St., Philadelphia
RP McMurphy’s – 8:00pm (signups at 7:45) at RP McMurphy’s, 2623 MacDade Blvd., Ridley,PA
If you run a Philadelphia-area comedy show or open mic let us know so we can share it on our calendar and in our daily show round-ups by sending us the information from our submit a show page to email@example.com.
Self-proclaimed “slowest-rising comedian in America” Alex Pearlman may not be able to call himself that for much longer—he’s opening for Todd Barry at Urban Saloon this Sunday. Here’s him talking about that, and some other stuff!
WitOut: You’re opening for Todd Barry this Sunday at Urban Saloon! How did that happen?
Alex Pearlman: Mainly networking and a lot of grunt work. I like to call myself the “slowest-rising comedian in America” considering how long I’ve done this. But the number one rule is networking. You never know who’s booking shows or who’s doing what, so try to be polite to people’s faces, and keep your bitter tweets cryptic.
Continue reading “Try to be Polite to People’s Faces” – Interview with #bigshotcomic Alex Pearlman
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!
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
by Alison Zeidman
Mary Radzinski is the sassiest lady-comic to ever hoist up a pair of ovaries and get ‘erself up on a stage full o’ people ready to laugh at her unique lady-take on wimmin stuff and—just kidding, I’m not going to do that to her.
Mary Radzinksi is the co-host of the Monday night open mic Laughs on Fairmount at Urban Saloon (along with friend and fellow funnyperson Carolyn Busa), and one of the newest additions to the Helium Comedy Club hosting roster. She’s one of the friendliest faces in the Philly comedy scene, an exceedingly talented writer and performer, and really, really funny.
In short, Mary is swell. For further proof, read on:
Alison Zeidman: For people that maybe aren’t familiar with you, can you talk about how you got started in comedy?
Mary Radzinski: Six years ago I took a comedy writing class as part of Main Line School Night, and there was a graduation show at the end. So the first time I did stand-up it was a graduation show, and then I did a couple ones-y little things with people in the class because we were like “We’re rockstars, this is amazing!” And then I didn’t do anything. I waited a couple years, and four Julys ago I got onstage at an open mic and I’ve been religiously doing that since.
AZ: What made you want to get started again?
MR: My best friend lives in Fairmount and at the time there was [another] open mic here [at Urban Saloon]. And she was like, “Oh let’s go to this bar, there’s an open mic, it’s Monday nights”—which is funny, same night—and that got me to do it.
AZ: You’re one of the newest Helium hosts. Did you do anything special to prepare for your audition?
MR: I think having done the audition a couple years ago and then…you know, we’re all still so new in this game, but I think just getting onstage all the time [was the most helpful]. In terms of specific preparation for that show, just being confident in my jokes and trying not to second-guess myself. When I first heard about the audition again, I was like “I need to write all new material!” The self-doubt sets in and stuff. But then I was like no, and I just tried to tweak a few jokes and maybe strengthen some things that had been going well, and just tried to do my jokes and get out of my own head.
And I have hosted in some clubs, so I think that’s helped more in preparation of that longer set for a club show, and knowing like what’s a good five minutes, what’s a good ten minutes, what’s a good fifteen minutes. And being at Helium while my friends are hosting and watching it, more than anything, I think has given me a little confidence and prepared me.
AZ: Now I’m going to try to not ask you the question you’re not going to like—because I think it’s a touchy question for any female comic. So I don’t want to ask, “What’s it like to be a woman in comedy?” or even “What’s it like to be the first female comic on Helium’s regular host rotation?”, but more like, how do you celebrate that accomplishment, and acknowledge that, yeah, that is significant, but at the same time, keep the focus on the fact that comedy should be comedy, regardless of gender? How do you strike that balance?
MR: I think about it all the time, because I do think it’s a numbers game. Helium in Philly has not had a female host [in their regular hosting roster] yet—but I mean, I know Helium’s not against females by any means—so I’m excited and I’m proud and I hope that it’s because it’s at the time that I’m a good comic, or that I will be a good host or an asset for whoever they pair me with as the headliner and that sort of thing. I do think it’s a numbers game where—I was just talking to somebody about this, where if in a lineup of ten comics, there’s only one girl, and if that girl’s not funny, that just leaves a bad taste for a lot of audience members [in terms of female comics in general].
But I’m trying not to let that “girls aren’t funny” thing get me down, and knowing that I wasn’t going to become a host there until I was a funny comedian, regardless of gender, makes me feel confident now. I do have as one of my openers, “I don’t like girl comics either,” and that can be taken several ways—some females can be like, “Why would you do that?”—but I also feel like it’s just sort of knocking that sort of preconceived notion…
AZ: Oh totally. It’s commenting and poking fun at the idea that that’s even a thing.
MR: Yeah. And a lot of times, when people ask, “Who are your favorite comics?” I don’t necessarily immediately think of women. I think of people who have made me laugh. So I want that. And I think that stereotype can be negative, but I also think it’s a fun challenge to break through. There’s always going to be someone who’s like “You’re really funny for a girl, I don’t usually like girls,” and you get that all the time, and I’ve learned not to take that the wrong way because there are fewer female comics, and so a lot of times when people don’t see a ton of comedy—it’s totally a numbers game.
AZ: Your first hosting gig is going to be with Hal Sparks, right? What are you excited about for that week?
MR: Honestly it’s so funny, in my head I’m just like “I don’t care who it is! I would want to open for anyone there!” But I’m excited. I don’t know a ton about Hal Sparks—I’ll clearly do my homework—but from what I understand I think he does have a decent female following, and you know, could that be why they paired me with him? Probably, but I also like that—because I’m just looking forward to a full room.
AZ: OK, and this will hopefully be a fun question: What would be your fantasy hosting gig? Who would feature, who would headline, who would heckle that you would get to shut down, and who would come up to you afterwards and tell you that they really liked you? Anyone in the world.
MR: Oh my god…that’s amazing. Oh god, there’s so many. I mean my favorite comedians, like I love Louis CK, to open for someone like that…this is going to get me!
AZ: Have you ever seen High Fidelity? This is going to be like at the end when that reporter interviews him and asks for his all-time top 5 songs or albums or whatever it is, and he’s calling her every fifteen minutes to change his list.
MR: Yeah! I will definitely think about this…
AZ: You can send it to me later if you want.
MR: Can I? Because I definitely love that question, and I totally…if I give you an answer now, I would be texting you later to change it.
A week later, after a lot of thought and apologies for the delay, Mary sent me her responses. She reserves the right to change them at any time.
Headliner: Louis CK
Feature: Hannibal Buress or Kyle Kinane
Heckler: Some self-important dick from Everywhere, USA, or Adam Carolla
Person Who Liked Me: Seth MacFarlane or Bill Murray, or Sarah Silverman—along with the entire waitstaff from the venue. And then long after the show was over, Adam Carolla.
See Mary weekly at Laughs on Fairmount at Urban Saloon (2120 Fairmount Ave.), and this week at Helium Comedy Club (2031 Sansom St.) with Hal Sparks from Nov. 29th-Dec. 1st.
Alison Zeidman is a stand-up comedian, improviser, and Editor for WitOut.net.
Last night, the seventh annual Philly’s Phunniest Person Contest continued at Helium Comedy Club with Pat Barker, Carolyn Busa, and Tim Butterly moving on to the semi-finals. The competition continues Monday, July 8 and the opening round continues on Sunday and Monday nights until August 13 (full schedule here).
Tonight starts another two-week run of shows for Philly Improv Theater at the Shubin Theater. Things kick off at 7:30 with The Pink Collar Comedy Tour, continue at 9:00 with The Monthly Hour with James Hesky, and the night closes out with stand-up comedy showcase Hey Everybody. You can see PHIT’s full schedule online.
The 14th annual Del Close Marathon is this weekend in New York, and Philadelphia improv will be well represented in the festival. Making the trek to NYC will be Philly groups Asteroid!, King Friday, Mayor Karen, Hey Rube, ZaoGao, Iron Lung, Medic, Rosen & Milkshake, ApocaLips, Beirdo, Matt&. You can find out when your favorite Philly teams will be performing online.
The lineup and date for the next Camp Woods Plus has been announced. Joining Camp Woods on stage at L’etage on Wednesday, July 25 will be New York sketch group Listen, Kid!, and the show will also mark the debut of a full set from new Philadelphia sketch group Tap City (Aaron Hertzog and Luke Field).
This Saturday, Urban Saloon will host the Laughs on Fairmount Showcase the weekend partner to the weekly open mic from Mary Radzinski and Carolyn Busa. This weekend’s show will feature comedy from Blythe Wimbush, Alejandro Morales, Alex Grubard, James Hesky, and John McKeever. Doors open at 7:30 and the show starts at 8:00.
The 2011 WitOut Awards for Philadelphia Comedy were last night at World Cafe Live. The Philadelphia comedy community gathered together to hand out the awards which they themselves nominated and voted for. In case you missed it, here’s a full rundown of the winners in each category.
Best Host: Chip Chantry – host of Chip Chantry’s One Man Show (with Special Guests) and Facetime with Chip Chantry
Best Venue: Philly Improv Theater
Best Podcast: CheaPodcast
Best Open Mic: Laughs on Fairmount (hosts Carolyn Busa and Mary Radzinski)
Best One Time Show: The Roast of Meg Favreau
Best Short Run Show: Pro Mania (Ian Vaflor and Alex Gross)
Best Regular Show: The Ministry of Secret Jokes (Doogie Horner)
Best New Group: Hey Rube (Alex Gross, Dennis Trafny, Jen Curcio, Lizzie Spellman, Mark Leopold, Rob Cutler, Scott Shepherd, Tara Demmy, Aaron Hertzog, director: Matt Holmes)
Best Improv Group (1-3 members): The Kristen & Amie Show (Kristen Schier and Amie Roe)
Best Improv Group (4+ members): Hate Speech Committee (Brendan Kennedy, JP Boudwin, Rob Baniewicz, Darryl Charles, Sue Taney, Christian Alsis, Billy Bob Thompson, Aaron Hertzog)
Best Stand-up Bit: Darryl Charles – Hatchet
Best Sketch: The Feeko Brothers – Jay Peebee’s PB&J
Best Sketch Group: The Feeko Brothers
Best Stand-up Comedian: Chip Chantry
Special thanks to World Cafe Live for allowing us to have our “clown friend clubhouse goofball jerkoff party” in their establishment. Also thanks to everyone who helped produce the show. The writers: Aaron Hertzog, Chip Chantry, Doogie Horner, Rob Baniewicz, Mary Radzinski, Jim Grammond, Becca Trabin, Joe Moore, Luke Giordano, Billy Bob Thompson, Greg Maughan. The video spots were put together by Rob Baniewicz and Shannon Devido. Also thanks to all the presenters and of course, the host of the evening Joe Moore.
Philly Weekly is talking about us! Today’s music section has an article about WitOut, and the upcoming WitOut Awards. You can pick up a copy at PW boxes throughout the city or read the article online. We suggest both.
This weekend, Camp Woods and The Feeko Brothers are heading west for the Chicago Sketchfest. The groups will perform two sets each while visiting the windy city for the festival and will be sure to represent Philly as only they can. You can check out sketches from the groups on their websites.
The Philly Improv Theater is looking for interns. Students who are enrolled in a degree granting college or university program are eligible to apply for Winter/Spring (January through April), Summer (May through August) or Fall (Sepember through December) internship experiences with the Philly Improv Theater on an unpaid or college/university credit basis. Interested students can get more information online.
This Friday you can check out a pair of back-to-back shows in South Philly. At 8:00pm at The Arts Parlor is The Sideshow featuring improv from Kait & Andrew, Martha Cooney, and Town Hall. Then at 10:30 you can check out High Note Humor for stand-up from Doogie Horner, Tommy Pope, Anton Shuford, Aaron Hertzog and Kevin Hurley.
Saturday night will bring back the Laughs on Fairmount Showcase to The Urban Saloon. Carolyn Busa and Mary Radzinski have branched off their weekly open mic into a booked showcase featuring some of their favorite comedians. This month’s show will feature Chip Chantry, Aaron Hertzog, Jim Ginty, TJ Hurley and Mike Roberts.
Laughs on Fairmount
Mary Radzinski and Carolyn Busa host Laughs on Fairmount every Monday night at The Urban Saloon. Comedians gather to sign up in the front room of the bar and move to the beautiful back room when the mic starts at 8. The show always runs smoothly as Mary and Carolyn handle their ever growing sign up sheet excellently.
Center City Comedy
For more than three years, Thursday nights at The Raven Lounge has been the home of Center City Comedy. Chris Cotton, H. Foley, and Tom Cassidy pack the upstairs room every week with comics waiting their turn to take the stage in front of the full crowd. The mic usually runs late into the evening giving comics the chance to test out their material in front of an always evolving (getting more drunk) group of audience members.
Helium Comedy Club
Philadelphia’s premiere comedy club opens its’ stage every Tuesday for their Open Mic Extravaganza. Sign ups have recently moved online but before the new system comedians would gather at the club starting at 6:30 every week to sign up and then wait until the lineup was announced at 7:30. Many would stay to watch the show even when they didn’t get on – making Tuesday nights at Helium a favorite hangout for many local stand-ups.
Taking advantage of the surplus of comedians in the area on Tuesday nights due to the Helium open mic, Jack Martin and Paul Goodman started their own, late night open mic around the corner at Noche. Starting at 9pm, Rittenhouse Comedy provides those that don’t get on at Helium a chance to perform on Tuesday nights, and gives a second set to the lucky ones that do.
Sketch Up or Shut Up
The lone non stand-up open mic to be nominated, Sketch Up or Shut Up is Philly Improv Theater’s open stage for sketch groups, or those that just want to test out sketch material in front of an always welcoming crowd. Hosted by Brian Kelly of Secret Pants (after taking over for Meg Favreau) Sketch Up or Shut Up is a late night Friday free for all on stage at PHIT. Some favorite Philly sketches have made their debuts at Sketch Up, along with some one time, if you miss them you’ll never see them again gems.
2011 Witout Awards: Best Host Nominees
Rob Baniewicz and Paul Triggiani
Rob and Paul get together on stage at Philly Improv Theater every month and have a TV Party. They find the best worst television from the past available and present it to a crowd full of often drunk and always eager fans waiting to laugh – both at the shows and with the hilarious commentary provided by the two.
Carolyn Busa and Mary Radzinski
Every Monday night Carolyn and Mary turn the back room at The Urban Saloon into one of the best open mics in the city, Laughs on Fairmount. The two take turns introducing acts and keep the show moving with their own charm and sense of humor. They often start the show with a short sketch that highlights the chemistry they have with each other and gets the audience ready for a night of great comedy.
Chip Chantry is a busy man. He is the host of two monthly shows at major Philadelphia comedy venues. Facetime with Chip Chantry is a talk show at Helium Comedy Club that features Chip performing sketches, jokes about the news, and conducting interviews with each of his guests. Chip Chantry’s One Man Show (with Special Guests) moved to Philly Improv Theater after its’ successful run at The Khyber and features Chip hosting for many of the best acts Philly Comedy has to offer.
Twice per month on Friday nights Aaron Hertzog hosts Hey Everybody! an evening of stand-up comedy at Philly Improv Theater. The showcase features many of the best stand-ups in Philadelphia and the occasional visitor from out of town. Aaron is known for yelling “Hey Everybody” at the top of his sets, and getting audiences ready for the show with his jovial invitations of friendship.
Doogie’s monthly Ministry of Secret Jokes has been one of the best nights of comedy Philadelphia has to offer for years. Doogie packs the show with not only great stand-up and sketch comedy but games, contests, and audience participation. The show is run like a meeting of a secret society, and Doogie often opens his shows by having the audience recite an oath that they will not reveal what they see to anyone. Judging by the packed in crowds upstairs at Fergie’s every month, many people have been breaking that oath.