Posts Tagged “Broadway Comedy”

Joe De Rosa Takes On A "Friendly" Heckler at Broadway Comedy Club

Sometimes in the middle of a set, if a comic doesn’t think the joke they just told got enough of a response they mention it to the audience. Personally, I try and avoid it although I have been known to say, ” Thank you for obeying the “No Laughing” signs!”

Joe De Rosa on-stage at Broadway Comedy Club!

Joe De Rosa who is always funny and proved that long ago, was doing a bit in the main room of Broadway Comedy the other night about nurses, and about how some of them are not that attentive when you’re in the hospital. He was using his Mom’s recent hospital stay as a reference, and he happened to comment to the audience something along the lines of he felt he was losing them over this nursing material, when one woman in the audience became quite vocal in her response, that she wasn’t feeling the nurse material and said something to the effect, “I’m feeling your pain but you’re not rocking it right now!” Which was a strange remark on many levels.

Mostly I wondered where she had learned the term “rocking it”, and I pictured her just waiting for any opportunity to use it. Here was her chance so she yelled it out right in the middle of Joe’s set. Granted he basically asked the audience for their opinion of the nurse material, but not all questions have to be answered. You take a chance when you do that. People mixed with alcohol, can lead to a noisy result, which is what happened here.

Joe had also wondered where the concept of “hot nurses” came from, as they are often portrayed mostly in porn films, because the nurses he saw did not quite fit that bill. One of them said to him, ” Anything I can do for your Mom Mr. De Rosa?” And he said, ” Yeh, stay away from her wallet! You got a spider tattoo on your neck and I don’t trust you!”

Because Joe has so much stage experience he chose to engage her, and she kept insisting that she was a “friend”, and “fan” of Joe’s, hence the “Friendly Heckler” title, and she said she liked him as a comic but felt the need to stand up for nurses. All this while the show was going on, … or not going on!

Joe handled it well, but a lesser comic wouldn’t have been able to. He also said ” The President did badly in the debate because he ran out of lies. Politicians promise you things you like. You like water slides? If I’m elected, everyone will have a water slide!” It can’t be done. They know it but they promise it to you anyway!

Joe’s got a new book out called Cheat: A Man’s Guide to Infidelity, from Simon and Schuster, that he wrote with Bill Burr, and Robert Kelly, and the book is a hit! You can get it on Amazon!

Leah Bonnema was the host and she’s great at that.

Funny lady Leah Bonnema hosting the show at Broadway Comedy!

I also got to see Jason Salman who I had only seen doing five minute sets on some of my late night shows before that, but this night he did a 20 minute set and got lots of laughs with things like ” In Texas, ( where he’s from), we believe you can kill any animal for food, except a stork, because we consider that an abortion!”

Jason Salman, accompanied by his ever-present moustache onstage at Broadway Comedy!

And growing up in Texas, he thought vegans and French people were fictional characters from literature!

Neko White closed the show. Neko is very funny, and is only 19 years old, which is such a great time to be performing. I’ve performed with him many times and I see great things ahead for him. He’s one of those performers that the audience just loves to laugh at. He brings a strong comedic presence to the stage.

He questions some of the things that Black people fought for in the past, for instance not having to sit in the back of the bus. He feels that’s the most comfortable place to sit on the bus, and he’s right! It’s less crowded, and the seats are bigger, but thankfully you won’t find Rosa Parks there!

Nineteen year old Neko White killing it onstage at Broadway Comedy!

He talked about why he can’t be with “big girls”, cause he’s too thin and his bone density is not what it’s supposed to be. If a big girl layed down on him, he’s afraid his chest would pop like bubble wrap!

It was an entertaining show just like always at Broadway Comedy!

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Sheba Mason in 702 Punchlines and Pregnant at Broadway Comedy Club

To be 100% honest, I was totally unprepared for what I was to see when I attended 702 Punchlines and Pregnant, Sheba Mason’s show, written by her Mom Ginger Reiter. The show has been running for two years at the Broadway Comedy Club.

Ginger Reiter and Sheba Mason at Broadway Comedy Club for their show “702 Punchlines and Pregnant!”

I’ve known Sheba for quite a while and enjoyed her performance as a comic, but I had no idea she was so multi-talented, and had such a great voice. I’m assuming she gets her talent from her Mom, Ginger Reiter who wrote this entire show, (with Sheba), plus the music and lyrics to about 25 songs, which were expertly arranged by Markus Hauck.

I truly did not expect a performance of the caliber that I saw. I expected maybe a .22 caliber and this was like a .357 Magnum caliber! (LOL) It’s the story of how Sheba came to be as the result of a love affair between her mother and comedian Jackie Mason.

Trevor Crane as Jackie presenting Sheba as Ginger with a supposedly expensive watch, that turned out to be a cheap, broken watch!

It’s set in Florida and one of the sets is The Rascal House, a well known Miami Beach coffee shop. In the show, Jackie denies fathership of the baby, until it’s proven beyond a shadow of a doubt that it’s his. In real life all you have to do is look at Sheba to see the resemblance. Thank G-d she’s a pretty girl!

Unfortunately, the actor that plays Jackie Mason was hurt in a bike accident as was Sheba who performed with a bandaged leg, but she still managed to show up, dance and do her part. What a trouper! That’s the essence of “the show must go on!”

A talented actor named Trevor Crane, who is a Conan O’Brien impersonator, took the role of Jackie, and was introduced as a tall Gentile playing a short Jew. The essence of acting is being someone you’re not, and in this case he definitely stretched, (or maybe shrunk would be more accurate!), to play the part, and it worked well!

Trevor Crane as Jackie Mason and Sheba Mason as her Mom Ginger Reiter in 702 Punchlines and Pregnant, at Broadway Comedy Club!

The entire cast is very talented and includes Jara Jones as Wooley, and The Schlepalong, Gary Lizardo as Nelson Zee , and Bari Hyman as Rosa the waitress.

(L-R) Jara Jones, Trevor Crane, Sheba Mason, Gary Lizardo, Remina Nishida, Jennifer Yadav, and Bari Hyman at Broadway Comedy Club!

The cast of 702 Punchlines singing on stage at Broadway Comedy Club!

The cast of 702 Punchlines and Pregnant in a catchy dance number at Broadway Comedy Club!

Ginger gets to come onstage a couple of times, and be part of the production and stand-out voices besides Sheba were Remina Neshida, who played Trixie, the other-“other woman”, and Jennifer Yadav who played Mrs. Olivier, Ginger’s Mom. In the beginning of the show, Sheba plays herself, and then for the rest of the play she plays her Mom.

Remina Nishida playing Trixie in 702 Punchlines at Broadway Comedy Club!

It plays on Sundays at 3 P.M. Do yourself a favor and go see it!

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Ladies of Laughter 2012 Launches at Broadway Comedy, July 17th

Mary Jo Wobker was a comedy producer/comic who gave many new female comics their start, from around 1989 until her sudden demise in 1992. In those days they were called “comediennes”. Now the same way that girls would rather be called ” actors”, than “actresses”, girl comics just want to be called “comics.”

When Mary Jo passed away, that’s when Peggy Boyce stepped up to take over as a producer of female or double X-chromosome-type comedy events! (For you science majors out there! LOL)

Peggy is a former stand-up comedienne/juggler who has appeared in major comedy clubs and festivals, and has also provided public relations, special events and sponsorship marketing services to corporations that include Anheuser-Busch, CIBA, Citibank, Harrah’s Entertainment, Kraft and MasterCard.

She also teaches comedy workshops in the New York metropolitan area and is a member of the New York Friars Club.

Along with Mary Jo’s friends, Peggy created a women’s stand-up comedy competition in her name. The “Mary Jo Comedy Awards.” It served as a platform for women comics to gain publicity, and even cash ( which is always good!), to further their careers.

In 1998, the “Mary Jo Comedy Awards” evolved into a series of live events in New Jersey called “New Jersey’s Funniest Female.” In 1999, based on its success and popularity, plus having corporate sponsorship, they were able to extend their reach outward to an international level.

Now called the Ladies of Laughter, funny women around the United States, Canada and England regularly apply for participation.

This year, the Ladies of Laughter Kicks Off It’s 2012 Series featuring some of the funniest professional and amateur comediennes in America competing for the right to advance to the Finals for the 2012 Ladies of Laughter titles, paid comedy bookings, cash, major publicity and Leica Cameras! Not too shabby!

And charity-wise a percentage of the cover charges will go to benefit “Buddy Cares”, an organization which provides free grooming for abandoned animals.

For tickets/reservations go to: http://www.ladiesoflaughter.org/2012-series/

It’s going to be a great line-up. Some of the comics you’ll see are, Nancy Lombardo, Kerri Louise, Roberta Rockwell, Maryanne Donnelly, Lisa Pearlman, Sheila Smiley, Ellen Orchid, Marie Faustin, Nicci Page, Jamie Falk, Zoe Marsh-Leigh, Laura Agentar, Liza Acevado, Manjit Kalirao, and Jen Ramauro.

Who says girls can’t be funny??? I even suggested a couple of newer comics that I thought were good including Corinne Fischer, Aminah Imani, and Upa!

So make sure to come to Broadway Comedy for the kick-off event on Tuesday, July 17th, 2012! And tell ’em I sent you! (LOL)

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Multiple Shows at Broadway Comedy

In most clubs you’re glad if they have one show. Broadway Comedy offers at least two and sometimes more! Standing out front I ran into Aaron Haber who produces shows at The World, the sister club which adjoins Broadway Comedy, also owned by Al Martin.

Aaron produces shows featuring new talent at The World, produces the monthly comedy show at the legendary Friars Club in NYC, teaches comedy at Princeton, and is the editor-in-chief of www.evilnewsdaily.com, a blog written by supervillains. So on my way to the main show in the downstairs room of Broadway, I stopped in to The World to see what was going on.

Comic/Producer Aaron Haber standing guard at Broadway Comedy Club!

The room was pretty full for a Wednesday night, and everyone was laughing, because new comics are funny too. They just need stage time, and this is one of the places they get it!

The downstairs show had a great line-up. Ricky Velez was the MC, and he’s always funny. If he has a kid he wants him to have Diabetes, so it’ll be harder for a pedophile to lure him into his van with candy.

Ricky Velez hosting the show in the main room at Broadway Comedy!

Then there was Sam Morrill, who I’ve performed with many times. I like his laid back, easy delivery, and clever punchlines. He discussed manners during sex. He was having an interlude with his girlfriend when he urged her to go faster. Her response was ” Please”! She requested him to say “Faster please.” He was like, ” Now I have to have manners during sex? I’ll tear that ass up, … if I may! With your permission!”

Sam Morrill onstage at Broadway Comedy!

He was taking a girl home from a bar and she asked him, “you’re not gonna kill me are you?” When he said ” No” she agreed to go home with him. He was like, ” That’s your screening process? I’d have to be a terrible killer to admit I was going to kill you just by you asking me!”

Nore Davis took the stage next. Nore is a very funny young comic, and lately has been opening for Tracy Morgan. I like when he tells about getting his own apartment and he gave the landlord his entire savings of $1300. for his first month’s rent. The next month the guy came back and asked for another $1300! Nore was like, ” Do you have any idea how long it took me to save up a thousand dollars? And you want $1300. every month? That’s 32 billion dollars a year!”

A young, but experienced Nore Davis doing what he does, onstage at Broadway Comedy!

Joe DeVito is always funny and a favorite of mine. He has a friend who does nothing but talk about his i-Phone. He told Joe they could even watch a movie together on it. Joe was like, ” What would those circumstances be like? What would we do, watch cheek to cheek on a 4 inch screen?

Funny guy Joe DeVito onstage at Broadway Comedy Club!

He also talked about the new condoms that heat up while you’re wearing them. “Who is that for? The guy who likes safe sex, but misses that burning feeling?”

Mike Vecchione is another favorite of mine, and I could watch him perform every night without getting tired of seeing him. When he thought the audience wasn’t paying enough attention, he started telling his jokes at a very fast pace, until they DID start paying attention!

He feels like every person in the world should have to take a standardized citizenship test, and the results would determine what country you had to live in!

“Staten-Island Cop”-looking Mike Vecchione killing it onstage at Broadway Comedy!

He got a Taser instead of a gun and his favorite place to Tase people is the Renaissance Fair. It makes him feel like a wizard from the future!

Harrison Greenbaum closed the show. Harrison is also a big talent. I had him on my Diabetes comedy fundraiser last year, and he killed! He has a one man show called “Harrison Greenbaum – What Just Happened”, which is a mix of his stand-up and magic, that debuted to a sold out crowd at UCB in 2010. He’s also a talented magician. It’s the show he’ll be doing this summer at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival in Scotland, but next week,April 3-5th, it will be playing on 42nd Street and 8th Avenue at the Dan Sperry Theatre inside of Times Scare. Check it all out at http://www.whatjusthappenedshow.com

Harrison Greenbaum and Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV!

And check out Broadway Comedy on West 53rd Street if you’re in the mood to laugh your ass off, and have fun food and drinks!

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Broadway Comedy Hot Saturday Show

I like dropping by Broadway Comedy Club unexpectedly because you never know who you’ll see there. Saturday night is usually packed so I thought it would be a good time, and I was right.

The welcoming looking marquee of Broadway Comedy Club, on West 53rd Street!

I got to see a great line-up of comics, hosted by the very funny Chris Murphy, who looks more like a rock singer than people tell me I do! Chris is very funny and commented on his appearance by saying that as he was walking in the street some guy yelled out ” Faggot”, and he was pissed off, but of all the guys on the street, he was the only one that turned around!

Chris Murphy MC’ing the show at Broadway Comedy with his long, rockstar hair!

He also commented on his Irishness and their proclivity towards the drink! He said his own father got a DUI while taking his driving test! And it was on the written part! That’s hysterical!

Next up was Dustin Chafin, who I know for a long time, and who also has a look of his own! He’s originally from Texas, and always wears a cowboy hat, but describes his look as a guy who “should be selling meth at a gay rodeo!”

Dustin Chafin, a transplant from Racism, Texas, onstage at Broadway Comedy Club!

He says he’s from a little town in Texas called “Racism.”

On dating a girl who encouraged him not to eat meat from animals, and eat salad instead, she said to him, ” If you really liked animals you’d stop eating meat”, and he said, ” if YOU really liked animals, you’d stop eating their food!”

Bill McCarty is a real pro and has been performing for a long time. I think that’s why they gave him the infamous “check spot”! It’s the hardest spot to take cause people are reviewing their checks and arguing over who ordered “gratuity” and things like that! Bill said his health insurance plan is so bad, if he gets sick, he has to find the nearest school and go see the school nurse.

Bill McCarty striking a serious pose while making people laugh at Broadway Comedy Club!

Brian Scott McFadden who I covered in a recent Blog post was also on the show and killed it as he always does. He recently came to the attention of the producers of the new “In Living Color”, who I was helping to find people to audition, for the new show, and I told them about Brian’s strength doing characters. There aren’t many comics who can do so many strong characters. Hope he gets it!

And Russ Meneve was also on the show and is a favorite of mine. You’ve seen him on Letterman and Leno. He’s very edgy and even more than he was before. He’ll say things like, ” Did you ever get a girl so turned on you can feel her nails through your ski mask?” Very edgy!

Russ Meneve who’s so relaxed onstage he can even lean on the mic stand!

On finding a condom in the street: ” Are you telling me that there’s a person so reckless that they’d have sex in the street, yet so responsible they use a condom?” That’s funny!

He told about the Asian delivery man who got stuck in an elevator for hours because he couldn’t find the “R” for “Robby”! That’s like my joke about going into a Chinese restaurant so drunk, I tried to order a sandwich. They got so confused they called the police. And all I remember is someone yelling, ” No blead! We no have blead!” ( Bread, get it??? LOL) And I was like, ” I don’t bereave you!”

What’s also cool about Broadway Comedy is that they have these big flat screen TV’s around the room so you can see the performer wherever you’re sitting.

Russ Meneve, literally star of both stage and screen,(LOL) at Broadway Comedy Club!

Russ is also a good ad-libber which is so important and a skill I’m working to improve onstage. He asked one guy in the audience what he does to get sex, and the guy said he goes out “clubbing.” And Russ said, ” By “clubbing” you mean you club women and drag them into your van?” That was really funny!

All in all a great night at Broadway Comedy on West 53rd Street in the heart of Manhattan’s Times Square area!

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Al Martin’s Broadway Comedy Club

Al Martin’s Broadway Comedy Club

I dropped by Broadway Comedy the other night, cause I heard that Ruperto Vanderpool was headlining, and I hadn’t seen him since he performed in one of Anthony Anderson’s fabulous Mixtape Comedy shows. Ruperto and I go back a long ways, and he’s really funny, so I made time to check out the show.

The Broadway Comedy Club entrance on West 53rd Street in Manhattan is like a beacon for comedy and people who need to laugh!

After I got there, and felt the Broadway Comedy energy, I started asking myself why I don’t get over there more!

Then I ran into my old buddy Al Martin who owns the place. Al is a fascinating guy with a long history in comedy.

He’s one of only two comedy club owners I know to own more than one club in NYC at the same time. Besides Broadway on West 53rd Street, which also encompasses “The World” Comedy Club, he also has New York Comedy Club on East 24th Street, which was where I first started to perform when I started doing stand-up.

Al was a stand-up himself, having started performing back in 1988, which gives him a different perspective on comedy than other club owners who don’t perform. Al puts it to good use when he hosts shows, which I’ve seen him do many times. He’s a funny guy.

I remember back when he had New York Comedy on 2nd Avenue around 48th Street, I believe. It was an upstairs club, and I used to drop in pretty often since I lived on 54th and 2nd. I recall meeting Eric Douglas there. Eric was Michael Douglas’s younger half- brother who was a stand-up, and who unfortunately died back in 2004 of a drug overdose.

As a stand-up Al did a lot of TV, including A&E’s Evening at The Improv, Comedy Tonight, and Joan Rivers’ talk show, besides gigs in A.C. and Las Vegas.

New York Comedy opened on East 24th Street in 1994, which I happen to know, ( and don’t ask me how! LOL) had been the exact location of a well known after-hours club!

As of 2001, Al also has a New York Comedy Club in Boca Raton, Florida! And it seats 350. That’s big!

Then in 2005, Al was involved with Boston Comedy Club, down in the Village which left him operating three clubs in NYC at the same time, also a record!
( Somebody call Guinness! LOL )

Anyway this night, I ran into a whole bunch of funny comics I know like Stacey Prussman, Leah Bonnema , Jason Salmon, Ricky Velez, and a new comic to me, who’s opening for Ruperto, named Edgar Rivera.

Headliner Ruperto Vanderpool, Leah Bonnema, and Edgar Rivera at Broadway Comedy Club!

Leah Bonnema had some good lines. She said there are no divorces in her family. There’s lots of murder, but no divorces!

She also dreams of something she never had, … health care! I think she said she was awakened during a dream by her boyfriend, where she was just about to get dental! I thought she should have added the tag, “ but instead I got oral!”

I forgot to tell her, but maybe she’ll read this! (LOL)

Edgar Rivera commented that it was so cold last week that white people stopped jogging! (LOL)

Ruperto Vanderpool killing it onstage at Broadway Comedy Club, with his sleeves rolled up imitating the Jersey Shore guys!

And Ruperto who’s always funny, killed it with his reminiscences about the old days, schoolyard games, playground stuff, and his comparisons between encyclopedias vs. i-Pads. Ruperto and Edgar will be performing together on an upcoming date!

Ruperto, who’s Dominican, and calls himself a “Blacktino”, does fantastic dialects, which always amazes me. He even does Chinese, Japanese and Korean. Audiences love when comics can imitate an accent! Of course it helps when they do it well! (LOL)

When Ruperto talks about Coney Island being the worst amusement park in the world, he gets very physical. He says it’s so old that you have to bring your own tools to tighten up the rides, and he makes his body vibrate as if he was on an out of control ride. It’s very funny!

Jeffrey Gurian of Comedy Matters TV with headliner Ruperto Vanderpool at Broadway Comedy Club!

When I left I ran into comic/producer Aaron Haber who not only produces shows at Broadway Comedy and The World, but also on Tuesday nights at The Friars Club, where I will probably see him tonight!

Al, who seems to always be planning a new project will soon launch New York Comedy World… a website devoted to everything comedy in New York! Sure hope there’s a place for Comedy Matters TV on there!!! (LOL)

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