Happy New Year and thank you to everyone for reading Comedians Defying Gravity in 2015! Lots of ways to see out 2015 and bring in 2016 with comedy. Wishing you a warm and funny NYE and all good things in the year ahead.
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John Oliver at The Chicago Theater, 175 N. State, 7:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. John Oliver is the former correspondent and guest host of the Daily Show and current host of HBO’s Last Week Tonight. In 2015, he won an Emmy Award, a Peabody Award, a Writers Guild Award and the GLAAD Media Award for Outstanding Talk Show.
“Soul Brother, Where Art Thou?” at The Second City, 1616 N. Wells, 7:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. The e.t.c.’s 39th revue. Late show includes New Year’s celebration.
“Fool Me Twice, Déjà Vu” at The Second City, 1616 N. Wells, 7:00 and 10:00 p.m. Second City Main Stage’s 104th revue. Late show includes New Year’s celebration.
“Holidazed and Confused” at UP Comedy Club, 230 W. North Ave., 7:00 and 10:00 p .m. Second City’s annual holiday revue. Late show includes New Year’s celebration.
“Holidazed and Confused” at Metropolis Performing Arts Center, 111 W. Campbell St., Arlington Heights, 7:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. Second City visits Arlington Heights.
“Underage Sugar Addicts” at Immanual Lutheran Church, 616 Lake St., Evanston, 7:00 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. This improv ensemble’s members are all 13–17 years old. They have performed all over the U.S. and return to Evanston as part of its “First Night” celebration.
New Year’s Eve Dinner Show with Adam Ferrara at The Improv, 5 Woodfield Rd., Woodfield Mall Store K120B, Schaumburg, 7:30 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. Adam Ferrara has co-starred in the television shows Rescue Me and Nurse Jackie and with Kevin James in the movie Paul Blart: Mall Cop. He also has several Comedy Central specials and has performed for President Obama. You can get tickets for dinner and the show or just for the show. Note: New Year’s celebration at 10:00 p.m. show only.
Damon Williams at Star Plaza Theatre, I-65 At US 30, Merrillville, IN, 8:00 p.m. The national headliner, Windy City Live guest host, Chicago-based comedian hosts his Seventeenth Annual New Year’s Eve bash. With London Brown (Fat Reggie on HBO’S Ballers), John Henton (Living Single, Hughleys), Chaunte Wayans, (MTV’s Wildin’ Out), Turae (HBO, BET, STARZ), Rob Stapleton (HBO, BET, Comedy Central), Uncle Rail and DJ Dollar Bill.
Very interesting, funny, honest interview here with Damon Williams about growing up in Chicago, Chicago comedy, his career, fascinating stories (about Bernie Mac, Chris Rock, Steve Harvey and more), segregation in comedy, concrete advice to comedians, his NYE show… and more! Added interesting fact: interview is by his son.
New Year’s Eve Party at Under the Gun Theater, 951 W. Newport, 8:00 p.m. Doors open at 8:00 p.m. for a buffet dinner, followed by interactive improv based on audience memories of 2015, intermission with food and drink, then UTG’s Porn Without Porn, champagne and a dance party until 2:00 a.m.
“New Year’s Eve Cornstravaganza” at The Cornservatory, 4210 N. Lincoln Ave., 8:00 p.m. Open bar and buffet, two all new sketch and improv shows and a champagne toast.
Harry Anderson at The Comedy Shrine, 4034 Fox Valley Center Drive, Aurora, 8:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. Harry Anderson’s many credits include Judge Harry T. Stone on Night Court, Dave’s World, where he starred as a character based on Dave Barry, eight appearances on Saturday Night Live and ten appearances on Johnny Carson’s Tonight Show. He is also an accomplished magician. Interesting fact: Harry Anderson spent his middle school years in Chicago where his dad took him to The Pump Room, then full of shenanigans, card sharks and sleights-of-hand. Soon after, he saw magician Harry Blackstone perform. These Chicago years sparked his life-long passion for magic and stage.
WBEZ Presents “Chicago Amplified: A New Years’ Celebration” at Mayne Stage, 1330 W. Morse Ave., 8:00 p.m. An evening of food, drink, storytelling from The Moth and music.
“Bye Bye Liver: Hello 2016” at Public House Theatre, 3914 N. Clark, 8:00 p.m. “Dress to the nines for a performance of Bye Bye Liver, the comedy show/drinking game, along with a glass of champagne, a shot of Malort, hors d’oeuvres, and a dance party.”
New Year’s Eve celebration at CIC Theater, 1422 W. Irving Park Rd., 8:00 p.m. Includes two improv shows, open bar, hors d’oeuvres, champagne toast.
“New Year’s Eve 2016 Comedy Bash” at The Laugh Factory, 3175 N. Broadway, 8:00 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.
8:00 p.m. line up: Jeff Arcuri, Abi Sanchez, Matt Chiaramonte, Chris Bader, Reena Calm and more TBA.
10:30 p.m. line up: Danny Kallas, Jonah Jurkens, Joey Villagomez, Paul Farahvar, Marty DeRosa, Kristen Toomey and more TBA.
“The Improvised Shakespeare’s New Year’s Eve Spectacular” at iO, 1501 N. Kingsbury, 8:00 p.m. “Party like it’s 1599!” This interactive evening includes games, prizes and music.
Ron Funches at Zanies, 5437 Park Place, Rosemont, 8:00 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Late show includes party favors and champagne toast. Ron Funches is the star of NBC’s Undateable and holds the record for most wins on Comedy Central’s @midnight. He is originally from Chicago.
Michael Palascak at Zanies, Pheasant Run Resort, 4051 East Main St., St. Charles, 8:00 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Late show includes party favors and champagne toast at midnight. Michael Palascak’s career began in Chicago. He has appeared on just about every late night show and was a top finalist on this summer’s Last Comic Standing. A guaranteed great evening.
Jessimae Peluso at Zanies, 1548 N. Wells, 8:00 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. The star of MTV’s Girl Code hosts this NYE show. The 10:30 show includes a champagne toast and party favors.
“NYE with the Harold” at iO, 1501 N. Kingsbury, 8:30 p.m. Featuring Harold teams “Stag.” and “Spider in the Car.” Also, drinks, dancing and DJ.
Caryn Bark and The Boomer Babes in “Funny Old Broads” at The Skokie Theatre, 8:30 p.m. Caryn Bark with Jan Slavin and Pam Peterson. Three very funny, original comedians/singers/actors who only get together a few times a year. This is a great opportunity to see them.
New Year’s Eve Bash at Jokes and Notes, 4641 S. King Dr., 9:00 p.m. An all-star line-up with Tony Sculfield, “Lil Rel” Howery, Dave Helem and Meshelle. Includes dessert and champagne toast.
“Super Sweet ’16 New Year’s Eve Party” at pH Theater at 1515 W. Berwyn, 9:00 p.m. Featuring Faceshow, based on the audience’s social media profiles, plus drinks, dessert, champagne, dance party and raffle. Tickets are cheaper if you pre-register. This event is also pH’s annual fundraiser.
Stew Figa’s “50 Shades of Yiddish” at Nichols Concert Hall at The Music Institute of Chicago, 1490 Chicago Ave., Evanston, 9:00 p.m. Yiddish music and humor. Part of Evanston’s “First Night” celebration.
Dennis DeBondt at First Presbyterian Church, 1427 Chicago Ave., Evanston, 9:00 p.m. Dennis DeBondt is known as the comedic “Sears Tower of Magic.” Tonight’s performance is part of Evanston’s “First Night” celebration.
“Second City’s Improv All Stars” at First United Methodist Church, 516 Church St., Evanston, 9:15 p.m. and 11:15 p.m. Special Second City appearance at Evanston’s “First Night” celebration.
“Too Much Light: A New Year’s Eve Party and Performance” at the Neo-Futurarium, 5153 N. Ashland Ave., 9:30 p.m. “You’re invited to a special New Year’s party and performance done in full Neo-Futurist-Fashion! We’ll start the evening with a delicious pre-show reception catered by Acre and Metropolitan Brewery that features Poems While You Wait (type-written poetry on demand) and a live performance featuring Alisa Rosenthal and Gwynn Fulcher beginning at 9:30pm. … THEN, at the crack of 11:00pm, we’ll kickoff a TML performance that will finish just in time for an audience champagne/sparkling apple juice toast at midnight. Kisses are optional.”
“Co-Ed Prison Sluts” at The Annoyance Theatre, 851 W. Belmont 10:00 p.m. This iconic Chicago musical comedy ran from 1989-2000. It was the longest running musical in Chicago history. Tonight it is back for one night only. Interesting facts: the show’s music was created by Faith Soloway, now a writer with her sister Jill Soloway on Amazon’s smash hit Transparent. Includes buffet, three drink tickets and midnight champagne. Bar opens at 7:00 p.m.
“New Year’s Improv” at Laugh Out Loud Theater, 601 N. Martingale Rd., Streets of Woodfield, Suite 171, Schaumburg, 10:00 p.m. Includes dessert, gift raffle, party favors, champagne toast.
“New Year’s Eve Comedy Countdown” at The Comedy Bar, 500 N. LaSalle, 10:00 p.m. “Join us this New Year’s Eve to ring in 2016 with a Comedy Countdown of our favorite comedians, hosted by The Puterbaugh Sisters! Other comedians include Martin Morrow, Kevin Williams, Natalie Jose and Drew Frees. Ticket includes comedy show, drink package, party favors, passed appetizers, dozens of raffle giveaways and a champagne toast at midnight!”
Damon Williams After-Party at Radisson Star Café, 800 E 81st Ave Merrillville, IN, 10:00 p.m. “Come dance in the new year with Soul Selectors DJ Dolla Bill from The “Diggin in the crates show with Chubb Rock.” There will be a complimentary photo booth to post your memorable moments a balloon drop and cash bar.” Only 100 tickets will be sold in advance. The rest will be sold during intermission at tonight’s Star Plaza show.
“The iO New Year’s Eve Interactive Game Show” at iO, 1501 N. Kingsbury, 10:30 p.m. Includes mentalist Eric Lindberg’s “uncensored mindreading.”
“Damn Gina! New Year’s Eve House Party” at iO, 1501 N. Kingsbury, 10:30 p.m. “Join the lively cast of Damn, Gina! for their sixth sketch revue, House Party. The Chicago comedy troupe returns to iO with all-new material featuring tormented politicians, gun wielding dinosaurs and 30-year-old teenagers. House Party includes seven deaths, 72 different characters and two nods to late director John Hughes, all sandwiched between the stylized transitions and production value for which Damn, Gina! is known.”
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