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The best comedy shows in NYC this week

The best comedy shows in NYC this week includes stand-up by heavy-hitters and up-and-coming funny people.

Courtesy Littlefield/Tucker W. Mitchell
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The best comedy shows in NYC this week include some exciting one-off shows in addition to the usual slate of weekly and monthly shows. Don't miss shows like SNL’s co–head writer and Weekend Update star Michael Che and an anti-Valentine's Day schtick in Gowanus, among others below. Plus, make sure to get out to the best comedy clubs in NYC which feature some of the city’s best. 

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Best comedy in NYC this week

1
Kara Klenk
Photograph: Mindy Tucker
Comedy, Stand-up

If You Build It

SubCulture, Noho

Kara Klenk, a writer for Girl Code and Broad City, is the evil genius behind this popular weekly stand-up showcase. Each week features a different host and a killer lineup featuring some of NYC's most-renowned comics. 

2
Freestyle Comedy Show
Photo: Mike Bryk
Things to do

Freestyle Comedy Show

The Bowery Electric, East Village

The Freestyle Comedy Show is the perfect way to kick off your week. Each Monday night producers Brendan Gay, Charles Engle and Santiago Angel put together a show featuring stand up comedians you'd recognize from Comedy Central, Netflix and the late night talk show circuit. For the miniscule price of $5 you'll be treated to a night of laughs with plenty of audience participation and a hook you won't see anywhere else—a rap battle that will leave your jaw on the ground. 

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3
Nervous Laughter
Courtesy: Nervous Laughter
Things to do

Nervous Laughter

Lady Stardust, East Village

When done properly, stand-up comedy can be about so much more than just making people laugh. It can also be used as a cudgel against tyranny and injustice, the jokes we laugh at can make us look within and confront the thorny issues that rarely come up in polite conversation.  When creating the concept for their bi-weekly comedy show Nervous Laughter, Sarah Harvard and Gene Meyer wanted to tap into this approach. Each show has a different theme (past themes include Green Card and Culture Class) and features an outstanding lineup of stand-ups exploring the topic. Ideally you'll laugh a lot, cringe a little and walk out of the room thinking.  

4
Comedy, Stand-up

Barely Making It

The Creek and the Cave, Long Island City

Meghan O’Malley, Adrian Davidson and Brittanie Sheree invite comedians to Long Island City every week to try out their freshest material. Past guests have written for and appeared on Broad City, Master of None, The Daily Show and more. All of this for the economical price of "free." 

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5
Magic After Hours
Photograph: Courtesy Noah Levine
Theater, Circuses & magic

Magic After Hours

Tannen's Magic, Midtown West
Open run
4 out of 5 stars

Thrice a week, after closing time, 20 people crowd into the city’s oldest magic shop, Tannen’s, for a cozy evening of prestidigitation by the young and engaging Noah Levine. The charm of Levine's show is in how well it fits the environment of this magic-geek chamber of secrets. As he maneuvers cards, eggs, cups and balls with aplomb, he talks shop, larding his patter with tributes to routines like the Stencel Aces and the Vernon Boat Trick—heirlooms of his trade that he gently polishes and displays for our amazement.

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