As you might expect, New York City is one of the comedy capitals of the world. Countless comedians and actors have made it from New York comedy clubs to the big time, and the hunt is always on to find the next big thing. Aside from the Seinfelds and the Chris Rock’s of the world, however, New York comedy has a lot to offer. Check out some of the options below for a great time:
Louis C.K.’s underground space has been around since the early 1980’s. You can sometimes catch popular comics here like Saturday Night Lifers Darrell Hammond and Colin Quinn, or more often local favorites like Dave Attell or Todd Barry. Weeknights are the best time to go, less crowded and Monday and Tuesday night entrance fees are just $12. Weekend performances cost $20-$24. There is also always a drink minimum to enter, but this is typical. Make a reservation to avoid the lines.
117 MacDougal St. in Greenwich Village, 212-254-3480
The late Rodney Dangerfield’s club has been open since 1969, and you can tell. With its waiters in white coats and the luxurious old-fashioned decor, you’ll feel like you’re back in the 1970’s/80’s. Dangerfield’s rarely brings in any big names, but the comics it does draw in are funny, but in the nastiest of ways. Don’t get too close to the stage if you want to keep a low profile, or you may become the subject of someone’s routine!
1118 1st Avenue on the Upper East Side, 212-593-1650
The other New York comedy clubs in this post do mostly standup, but UCB has made improv its main act. UCB in Chelsea and now UCB in the East Village have become quite well known for their quirky shows and celebrity performers. Saturday Night Live’s Amy Poehler is one of the founders, and she often manages to get former showmates and other big talent onto the stage. Definitely worth spending a night on.
307 West 26th Street in Chelsea 212-366-9176,
153 East 3rd Street in the East Village 212-366-9231