Second City Live: We’re All In This Room Together is at the Kimmel Center on Friday and Saturday. Photo by Todd Rosenberg
Bob Marley @ Helium Comedy Club | February 1-4
Stand-up comic Bob Marley has performed on pretty much every late-night talk show, including David Letterman and Jay Leno. Here’s your chance to see him live. He’ll be performing six shows at Helium over four days, but the 7:30 p.m. set on Saturday is already sold out.
Jay Pharoah @ Punch Line Philly | February 2-4
You know Jay Pharoah from his years as a cast member on Saturday Night Live, or maybe you’ve just seen a video of his spot-on celebrity impressions. He’ll be doing five shows at Punch Line, starting Thursday night. Read more »
See Chip Chantry at Helium Comedy Club tonight.
Chip Chantry @ Helium Comedy Club | Wednesday, January 4
Chip Chantry, who won the Philly’s Phunniest contest at Helium a few years ago and has opened for Louis C.K., Dave Chappelle and Bob Saget, hosts Good Evening with Chip Chantry, a funny take on late night talk shows, but at the more reasonable hour of 8 p.m. Guests include Joe Pickett and Nick Prueher from the Found Footage Festival, Mary Radzinski, Brandon Vincent Jackson, Christian Alsis and Jake Mattera. Read more »
Photo from Facebook/Official Nikki Glaser
Get In @ Good Good Comedy Theatre | Thursday, December 1
John McKeever and Tim Butterly of Comedy Central’s Delco Proper, set in Delaware County, are kicking off a new weekly comedy showcase at Good Good Comedy Theatre along with the theater’s founders, Aaron Nevins and Kate Banford. Tickets are only $5 and they promise “an insane show with a stacked lineup full of surprises.” Read more »
Tracy Morgan attends FX Networks upfront premiere of The People v. O.J. Simpson: American Crime Story on March 30, 2016, in New York. Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP
Tracy Morgan considers himself to be very fortunate. But he’s not lucky. As he tells me on the phone, “Luck is for losers.”
The Saturday Night Live alum and 30 Rock scene-stealer has made his return to the stage two years after a car accident that left him in a coma with a traumatic brain injury and took the life of a close friend, fellow comedian James McNair. After a long recovery, Morgan made his first big appearance at the 2015 Emmys, stepping up to the mic to a standing ovation. A few weeks later he returned to his old stomping grounds to host SNL, and earlier this year kicked off his Picking Up the Pieces standup tour.
Morgan approaches our conversation about the King of Prussia stop of the tour with his signature loose style, though he’s quick to tell me to move on when the interview touches on topics he doesn’t want to discuss. Those include politics (he isn’t interested) and an upcoming film with It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia’s Charlie Day (he doesn’t want to jinx it). Read more »
Madonna Refugia brings her one-woman show, Not That Madonna, to Plays and Players. Photo by Johnny Bleibdrey
The Borscht Belt @ Gershman Y | Thursday, August 11
Marisa Scheinfeld documents the decline of the Catskills in the photo exhibit The Borscht Belt: Revisiting the Remains of America’s Jewish Vacationland. It opens Thursday with a tour and a joke-telling competition in homage to the place where the likes of Mel Brooks, Joan Rivers, Rodney Dangerfield, Billy Crystal and many others got their starts. I did a quick search and I’m pretty sure Wikipedia’s description of “Borscht Belt humor” is spot-on: It typically includes bad luck, puns and aggravating relatives. Read more »
The Oval opens Friday. Photo by Steve Weinik
This is Spinal Tap @ Schuykill Banks by the Walnut Street Bridge | Thursday, July 14
Schuykill Banks turns the amp up to 11 with Rob Reiner’s 1984 mockumentary about (the fake) heavy metal band Spinal Tap. It’s rated R, mostly for cursing — 36 F-words, says IMDB’s parental guide. Read more »
Alison Zeidman and Aaron Hertzog will be at Boot & Saddle on Saturday.
Comedians and former Philadelphians Alison Zeidman and Aaron Hertzog have left us for New York (and feel a little guilty about it), but they’re paying South Broad a visit this weekend for FFA Comedy Jawn at Boot & Saddle, a showcase they co-produce and perform in. Read more »
Eman El-Husseini and Jess Salomon.
After a year of marriage, and some concern over whether one of them might actually be a spy, Jess Salomon
and Eman El-Husseini
have decided to stay together no matter what.
“We’re in this for the long haul,” Salomon says. “It doesn’t matter what either of us does, we aren’t going to break up. Mostly because we can’t let people be right.” Read more »
Chip Chantry (right, with his dog) opened for Louis C.K. on Tuesday night at Helium.
Chip Chantry is having one hell of a week.
On Sunday, he proposed to his longtime girlfriend. She said yes. On Tuesday, he got a call in the afternoon — about an hour before Louis C.K.’s surprise show would been announced — that he would be opening for the star of Louie. It was just a two-man show, so he got to do a 20-minute set before Louis C.K. Chantry will open for Louis C.K. again tonight at another show where C.K. tries out new material.
Chantry grew up in the Philadelphia suburbs and has been a fixture of the Philadelphia comedy scene almost since he started doing stand-up more than a decade ago. He won the 2013 Philly’s Phunniest contest at Helium, and tours around the country. He’s also one of my favorite comedians. I chatted with him about opening with Louis C.K., crowds in Philly versus crowds on the West Coast, how he got his start in stand-up and his own process of trying out new material.
How did you come to open for Louis C.K.?
It literally happened at noon yesterday when I got a phone call from the owner. I had heard about [a surprise] show, but I didn’t know it was going to be him. I know the owner, so when we were talking I said, “Hey, if you need an opener, let me know.” And he called me yesterday at noon so I had about eight hours to prepare myself. It was just a two-man show, which was nice. Read more »
Trim and dapper in a dark suit and bright tie, Louis C.K. looked surprisingly businesslike for a guy testing out new material last night at Helium. The club had announced a little after 1 p.m. yesterday that C.K. — arguably the biggest star in the comedy galaxy at the moment — would be that evening’s surprise headliner. Within minutes, a line stretched down Sansom Street and around the corner; hours later, a second show was added, and both were sellouts. Word from those leaving the 8 p.m. set was that he was polished, smooth, hilarious — less like a stand-up sweating it out at the comedy gym and more like he’d been doing these bits for years.
Read more »