As you may know, each month we co-curate a storytelling show at Brooklyn Brewery with Tom Shillue, a comedian, barbershop quartet enthusiast, and frequent performer on The Tonight Show. Some of our storytellers are comedians or regulars on the storytelling circuit, but others are just interesting people–chefs, journalists, filmmakers and all-purpose weirdos.
The show is such a good time that we decided to record it and produce a podcast, and this is the first one.
Eugene Mirman, holding court outside the Bell House. Photo: Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival
Famous people are great and all, but what I have really come to appreciate about Eugene Mirman after attending a few EMCFs is his ability to identify and give a stage to relatively unknown comedians who are clearly on their way to the big time.
The end of summer is here, and while that means less daylight, cooler temps, and not being able to phone it in at work anymore, it’s also time to get excited for the annual Eugene Mirman Comedy Festival
, which returns to The Bell House and Union Hall for five nights starting September 18. Now in its 7th year, the festival is an unfussy, intimate series of shows, panels, and events featuring top-notch talent, mostly culled from Mirman’s own list of comedian friends he’s collected over two decades in the biz.
A lot of the shows with big-name headliners are already sold out, but don’t despair if you didn’t snap those tickets up–the secret to the festival is that the less star-studded line-ups are where you’ll see tomorrow’s new favorite funny person. And everyone loves an opportunity to say, “Oh yeah, I saw her just before she got hired by SNL-The Daily Show-The John Oliver Show-moved to LA and got super famous.”
Thu June 12, 2014
A night at Get it Out There. Photo: BAM
Get it Out There at BAMcafé is basically the best setting for stand-up in Brooklyn. There is no other venue here that gives you the fancy comedy-club feel, minus the annoying drink minimums and cramped seating. But it’s coming to an end. This Thursday is the last installment of its spring season, but more importantly, it’s likely the last time Caroline Creaghead will be putting her imprint upon this showcase. The woman responsible for booking some of the coolest series in Brooklyn comedy, like Big Terrific and formerly, Pretty Good Friends, is leaving the behind-the-scenes world of stand-up producer to begin producing her own work. Even if you don’t recognize all the names on the lineup for this Thursday—Claire Titelman (Chelsea Lately on E!), John F. O’Donnell (Keith and the Girl podcast), and Kurt Metzger (Comedy Central Presents Kurt Metzger) and host Jared Logan (VH1’s Best Week Ever)–rest assured, Creaghead has a knack for introducing audiences to rising stars. Arrive early to get a seat.
Tue June 10, 2014
If you’re a comedy fan, you’re probably already familiar with Brooklyn resident Max Silvestri and his work. It’s likely that he made you laugh at Big Terrific, the longstanding weekly standup show he hosts, or when you read something he wrote for Eater or the Onion or Grantland or the Village Voice, or if you watched one of the videos he made for Details. After a decade in the business, Silvestri is having a bit of a moment right now: starting in July he is co-hosting, alongside Gail Simmons and Marcus Samuelsson, a new cooking and comedy show called The Feed, and he is dropping his debut comedy album, King Piglet, on June 10. Join him to celebrate at a comedy show and release party, featuring special guests, at 8pm at Littlefield. Tickets are $15.
Wed May 28, 2014
Regis Philbin won’t be returning to Scott Rogowsky’s comedy couch this week, but Steve Buscemi will join the late-night host at Littlefield on Wednesday. Photo: Running Late with Scott Rogowsky
I’ll confess that when I moved to the Brooklyn a few years ago, I was sort of hoping to bump into Steve Buscemi–one of my fave celebs and a Park Slope resident–on a fairly regular basis. As it turns out, I’ve never spotted him once, but I guess if I starred in stuff like Boardwalk Empire, The Big Lebowski, Fargo, The Sopranos, and Reservoir Dogs, I’d probably have better things to do than wait in line at Bagel Hole on Sunday mornings, too. This Wednesday night, however, I finally get the chance to see Buscemi in real life when he’s a guest on Running Late with Scott Rogowsky: Brooklyn’s Live Late Night Comedy Talk Show at Littlefield. The show habitually draws A-listers from the comedy world, and this week’s slate of featured guests also includes SNL’s Brooks Whelan, Peter Rosenberg, Katie Nolan, and Adam Resnick, whose new book, Will Not Attend, is generating lots of positive buzz. That’s a lot of star power for a mere $8, so buy your ticket now to avoid being shut out. The show starts at 8:30.–KH
Thu May 15, 2014
Cassie J. Sneider likes sharing her worst-case-scenario experiences with others. Hear how she fared with a roll-playing truck driver this Thursday at Video Tale. Photo: Cassie J. Sneider
We all like a good story every now and then, but over 29 million Netflix subscribers don’t lie–we like onscreen entertainment as well. Video TALE hits Videology this Thursday gathering some of the finest storytellers around to share some of their hilarious experiences using video as accompaniment. Storytellers include VICE’s Harmon Leon talking about infiltrating the Judge Joe Brown show, Cassie J. Sneider, of The Worst! reading series fame, sharing a story about a trucker who insisted she call him “Fake Grandad” and more. Admission is free so you can spend money on booze and chowing down on some of the delicious new grub being offered at the concession stand. (It’s really just the bar but whatevs. We’ll call it a concession stand if we want.)
Sat May 17, 2014
Bill Murray makes gloomy look good. Photo: Focus Features
From Groundhog Day to Lost in Translation, Bill Murray has had his gloom meter on high playing characters that may depress the hell out of you but also make you laugh uncontrollably. The Gloom Brothers have decided to incorporate Bill Murray into their latest party, this Saturday at Grand Victory, for a little shindig they’re calling Bill Murray is Feeling Awfully Gloomy. DJs Gordon and Nathaniel Gloom will be spinning tracks from their favorite Bill Murray movies and hosting a sing-along to Murray’s Lost in Translation karaoke song, Roxy Music’s More Than This. Dress to impress in your best Bill Murray costume to win a prize, dance the night away, pose for photos with a fake Bill Murray, watch movies projected on the walls and don’t forget: “For relaxing times, make it Suntory time,” all of the time. Admission is $6.
Fri May 9, 2014
It’s easy to overlook some of the ongoing programming Brooklyn has to offer in deference to the one-off events that get all the glory on a given week–but do yourself a favor and head over to the Pine Box Rock Shop this Friday night for one of the funniest Late Night Basement lineups we’ve seen in a while. Drink two-for-one beers from Heavy Seas to your heart’s content and watch comedians Walter Martin (bass player in The Walkmen), Michelle Wolf (Late Night with Seth Myers), Jared Logan (Best Week Ever) and Jon Benjamin (Family Guy) do their best to make beer come out of your nose. The fact that it’s free is just another reason to TGIF.
Sun April 6, 2014
Caroline Creaghead has been booking stellar lineups for Union Hall’s Sunday comedy shows for five years. Sadly, this week marks the end of her awesome reign, and she is going out with a bang. You can see some of the best acts in town at the final Creaghead & Company for just $7, including SNL writer and next big thing Michael Che, who is fresh off the taping of his Comedy Central special last weekend. Michelle Buteau, Jermaine Fowler, Phoebe Robinson, Jim Tews, Nick Turner, Jason Saenz, Jena Friedman, and Jon Glaser are also on the bill and are sure to lend some levity to the last few hours of your weekend. Doors open at 7:30.
Thu March 27, 2014
Before he decamped to LA to write for Parks & Recreation and the Kroll Show, Joe Mande lived in Brooklyn and regularly graced its stages with his hilarious brand of stand up. It was a huge loss when he moved, both because he performed reliably great sets at weekly comedy shows like Hot Tub and Big Terrific and because almost everyone else who ran in that circle seemed to leave us for LA at the same time. (We miss you, Kurt Braunohler, Kristen Schaal, Gabe Liebman, Gabe Delahaye, etc.) Of course we still have access to Mande’s brilliant Twitter feed, but a live local appearance—like Thursday’s show at the The Bell House–is something we can no longer take for granted. Mande is promoting his first-ever comedy album, Bitchface, and will be joined by Wyatt Cenac and Max Silvestri, a pair of brilliant comics and emcees who have thankfully stayed put in our borough (for the time being, anyway). Doors open at 7:30 and tickets are $14.