The best comedy shows in NYC this month

Find all the best stand-up, improv, storytelling and sketch-comedy shows in NYC over the next few weeks
Auntie's House
Photograph: Courtesy Jenni Walkowiak
By David Goldberg |
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Sure, you could stay home and watch the best stand-up comedians’ specials, or you could head out to the best comedy clubs in NYC and see some world-class performances in person. Below you’ll find our picks of the absolute best shows happening this month, from improv to open mic nights and everything in-between.

RECOMMENDED: Complete comedy shows in NYC guide

Best comedy shows this month

Comedy, Stand-up

Lap Dance Saloon

icon-location-pin East Village
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Whether you're visiting town and looking for laughs or a jaded New Yorker who needs a break, you can count on Jeffrey Emerson and Jill Weiner to deliver excellent comedy at this free weekly East Village stand-up night. Look out for some of our favorite all-star performers to hit up the low-key show. 

North Coast
Photograph: Courtesy James Robilotta
Comedy, Musical

Anybody: An Improvised Historical Hip-Hopera

icon-location-pin Lower East Side
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If you think about it, history is a bit like a word in a Rick Ross rhyme: It tends to repeat itself. That’s not the only thing history and rap have in common at this hilarious show, inspired by that other hip-hop musical. Hip-hop improv group North Coast invites audience members to suggest a favorite historical figure—be it Charles Dickens, Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Bea Arthur or beyond—then performs a fully improvised and factually accurate musical based on that person’s life.

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Photograph: Courtesy Steve Shohl
Comedy, Stand-up

Brooklyn Comedy Festival

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The city's best comics bring their stand-up, sketches, improv and more to Kings County during this week-long annual fest. This year's fest includes Las Culturistas: "I Don't Think So Honey" Live at Brooklyn Bazaar; Backfat Variety at Union Hall; and shows from HBO, Kevin McDonald, Joe Pera and many others. With a lineup this stacked, the only downside is not being able to catch everything. Head to bkcomedyfestival.com and let the agonizing begin.

Hack City
Photograph: Courtesy Mike Lavin
Comedy, Stand-up

Hack City

icon-location-pin Lower East Side
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It’s a free comedy show...with crêpes. Need we say more? Fumi Abe and Michael Nguyen bring together some of the city’s most diverse and reliably solid lineups every month at this sweet show. August's edition is a banger, with Emily Winter, Thiago Macklin, Joyelle Johnson, Alingon Mitra and Ismael Loufti  the stage. 

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Comedy

We're Tired

icon-location-pin Bushwick
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The deadly duo of Irene Merrow and Amanda Hurley have decided to reclaim comedy from the hands of the mediocrity. At their fierce new show, they assemble a defiantly diverse lineup to blast open the paradigm and make you laugh in the process. For the inaugural edition, they're joined by Julia Schiplett, Clare O'Kane, Justy Dodge, SallyAnn Hall, Hattie Hayes and Calvin Cato. 

LGBT

Kweendom

icon-location-pin Williamsburg
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Yes Gawd! At his monthly queer comedy throwdown, pop-culture maven Bobby Hankinson hosts some of his favorite queer comedians and performers for songs, sketches and stories. On September 21, Hankinson brings Eman El-Husseini, Jess Salomon and Addie Weyrich to the party. 

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Ben Wasserman and Brantley Brice
Photograph: Courtesy Dee Guerreros
Comedy

Cereal Milk

icon-location-pin Crown Heights
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How apt for Ben Wasserman and Brantley Brice's sweet new stand-up show to go down at Friends & Lovers, as their room will most certainly be packed with their best buddies. Join the two adorable whackjobs as they welcome funny friends Carmen Lagala, Jes Tom, Eudora Peterson, Adam Wade, Sam Taggart and Maria Wojciechowski to chill on stage.

Amanda Duarte
Photograph: Courtesy Michael Sharkey
Music, Cabaret and standards

Amanda Duarte: Staying Alive

icon-location-pin East Village
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Satan's Alley may sound like an apt description for our present political circumstances, but it's also the name of the fictional musical in the lurid, outrageous Saturday Night Fever sequel Staying Alive. And, 35 years later, it's the inspiration for Amanda Duarte's scorching new show about personal and political reawakening. The writer and Dead Darlings host puts the inferno of her personal life in perspective with the great garbage fire of American discourse at this dark engagement, which features fellow no-bullshit intellectuals The Gay Agenda, Becca Blackwell, Jenn Harris and Matthew Cleaver. While dishing out her singular opinions on Trump, Twitter and Tony Manero, she'll invoke the Bee-Gees to set us straight for the battles to come. Not to be missed.

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Comedy

Terrific Pacific: A Comedy Variety Show

icon-location-pin Boerum Hill
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If you're like us and can't stop crushing for comics Chelsea Davison and Asher Perlman, hit up their delightful free showcase at Pacific Standard, which features upbeat banter and plenty of excellent guests on the lineup. For the September edition, they welcome Sean Donnelly, Katie Hannigan, Lorelei Ramirez, Friends Who Folk, Joon Chung and Steve Waltien to the stage.   

Kelsey Caine and Carmen Lagala
Photograph: Courtesy Taylor Balkom
Comedy, Stand-up

Puppets Presents: A Stand-Up Comedy Show

icon-location-pin Park Slope
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At this over-the-top night of laughs, Kelsey Caine and Carmen Lagala ditch stagnant, self-indulgent stand-up for a dose of life-affirming puppetry. Joining the two goofballs for deliriously fun felt antics are stand-up pros Liza Treyger, Steven Castillo, Martin Urbano and Sam Evans.

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Jenny Gorelick, Addie Weyrich
Photograph: Courtesy Mindy Tucker
Comedy

Jenny's Birthday Variety Show

icon-location-pin Park Slope
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Leading a new generation of well-adjusted, no-drama comedians in NYC's golden age are Jenny Gorelick and Addie Weyrich, two theater goons with hearts of gold and a bastion of dance moves. At this bonkers monthly birthday party, the frighteningly upbeat goofballs go all out with songs, costumes, schticks and guests from the worlds of stand-up, musical comedy and drag. For the game night edition, they're joined by Mary Beth Barone, Ms. Golden Delicious, Milly Tamarez, X Mayo, Britanick and Marie Faustin. 

"Roast of Your 15 Year Old Self" by Alise Morales
Bridget Badore
Comedy

The Roast of Your 15 Year-Old Self

icon-location-pin Park Slope
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If you can’t hate yourself, how in the hell are you going to hate somebody else? Comedians exorcise their shame over their teen years through scorching receipts of the hair, music and bad kissing that once defined them. Alise Morales—NYC’s loveliest roastmaster—welcomes Jesse Roth, Dave Mizzoni, Jes Tom, Michael Kayne and Larry Owens to take deep, dark looks into their high school diaries.

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Things to do

Beyond! with Mike Kelton

icon-location-pin Lower East Side
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Angelic gonzo comedian Kelton launches his new podcast series, which delves into astrology, past lives, psychic connection and all things that stretch our faith and imagination towards something greater. For this launch party, he welcomes Pat Regan, Catherine Cohen and professional medium Asa Hoffman to take the stage and help preview the new series.

Photograph: Courtesy Jon Ambrosio
Comedy, Musical

The Sparkle Hour

icon-location-pin Park Slope
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Improv master Philip Markle invites you to indulge in blissful inanity at this loony variety hour, featuring strange tales, visceral humor and plenty of dance breaks. This time, he's joined by Meg Reilly, Sophie Zucker, Jo Firestone and Brian Rady. 

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Yotam Tobul and Lisa Franklin
Photograph: Courtesy Sandy Honig
Comedy, Stand-up

Runnin' On Empty

icon-location-pin Greenwich Village
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Best buddies Yotam Tubul and Lisa Franklin take the reins at Le Poisson Rouge every month for this delightful stand-up show, which gives seasoned pros and new acts equal time to shine. 

Lucas Connolly and Jenni Walkowiak
Photograph: Courtesy Yoko Haraoka
Comedy, Stand-up

Camouflage Comedy

icon-location-pin Williamsburg
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The always-charming Lucas Connolly beats his Friday night competition by offering guests free pizza and beer, along with some fantastic stand-up. September's edition boasts Katie Hannigan, Josh Gondelman, Matt Koff and Lorelei Ramirez.  

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Auntie's House
Photograph: Courtesy Jenni Walkowiak
Comedy

Auntie's House

icon-location-pin Williamsburg
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Chris Daniels and Kofi Thomas get down at a Bushwick arts space at this delightful monthly shindig. Drinks are included with your ticket, but be sure to BYOB to keep the party going long after the sets end. Brendan Eyre and Marie Faustin join in on the good times.     

Find more comedy shows this month by date

Hit the best NYC comedy clubs

The Stand
Filip Wolak
Comedy

The Stand

icon-location-pin Gramercy

Since 2004, the four partners behind Cringe Humor (cringehumor.net)—a blog turned event production company and talent management agency—have capitalized on an expanding audience for audacious comedy. After producing popular stand-up shows for years, it’s only fitting that they cofounded a venue in which to promote their favorite comics—think bawdy, raw and dark acts like Jim Norton and Dave Attell. This bi-level Gramercy spot, which opened last month, is already going full tilt, offering cocktails and embellished comfort food upstairs while shows take place seven nights a week in its long, narrow basement. The snug 75-seat room places the audience of frat guys and young professionals in close proximity to the performers, and they get pumped when one of their idols (Dane Cook, for instance) drops by.

Greenwich Village Comedy Club
Photograph: Filip Wolak
Music

Greenwich Village Comedy Club

icon-location-pin Greenwich Village

Al Martin, the longtime owner of both the New York Comedy Club and Broadway Comedy Club, follows the same basic tenets in his new room—an intimate basement space below an Indian restaurant—as in his other ventures. Though a few pillars in the 60-seat room interfere with sight lines, the pub grub, extensive cocktail selection and long list of stars who just might do a spot while passing through town are drawing crowds every night. Regulars include staples Christian Finnegan, Marina Franklin and Tom Shillue.

Time Out says
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Tribeca Comedy Lounge
Photograph: Filip Wolak
Music

Tribeca Comedy Lounge

The atmosphere in this spot—not to be confused with the space’s previous occupant, the Tribeca Comedy Club—is a congenial one. Its brick walls and makeshift stage remind you that you’re in a basement, but the doting waitstaff, haute Italian menu from Brick NYC upstairs and roomy layout will please fans of creature comforts, or those too claustrophobic for the likes of the Comedy Cellar. Adam Strauss, the owner-booker and a burgeoning comic himself, makes sure that his programming is packed with next-wave talent (young, funny stars such as Sara Schaefer, Dan St. Germain and Kevin Barnett) while also saving stage time for himself.

Time Out says
Laughing Devil Comedy Club
Photograph: Filip Wolak
Theater

Laughing Devil Comedy Club

icon-location-pin Long Island City

Last December, working comic Steve Hofstetter and business partner Jacob Morvay opened their shoebox of a club on a charming strip of Vernon Boulevard in Long Island City. Since then, the pair have been able to draw big talent—smart, outspoken acts like Todd Barry and Ted Alexandro—away from Manhattan five to seven nights a week; he’s also created some ambitious projects such as the She-Devil Comedy Festival, a stand-up competition for ladies from across the country, happening Thursday 25 through Sunday 28. The club, a 15-minute ride from Times Square, features a winning Mexican-American menu, cocktails named after comedy legends and 14 beers on tap. Though the only thing that separates club from bar in this long, narrow room is a curtain, the clear views of the stage and friendly vibe make the place a cozy and relaxed alternative to some of Manhattan’s stuffier venues.

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