This week comedians return to their hometown: Liza Treyger is at Comedians You Should Know. David Cross and Bob Odenkirk are in town for The Onion Comedy and Arts Festival, plus many more visitors. Details below.
At Zanies this week: Marcella Arguello, Tracey McDonald (Chicago), Kevin Bozeman (Rosemont), and Vince Maranto (St. Charles).
At The Improv: Deon Cole (Conan, Black-ish)
June 29-30: Chris Redd at The Laugh Factory
TUESDAY, MAY 29
[LAST WEEK!] Julia Sweeney: Older & Wider at Second City, 1616 N. Wells, 8:00 p.m. Sit in the living room of a favorite Saturday Night Live alum while she tells you the best stories of her post-SNL life. Well, it’s not actually Julia Sweeney’s living room, but she has a knack for connecting with audiences and making any venue feel like home. The evening is about her ups and downs, relationships, parenting, and what it’s like to be famous and then fit back into everyday life on the North Shore (in Wilmette). Don’t miss!
Comedy Cocktail at House of Blues’ Foundation Room, 329 N. Dearborn, 6:00 p.m. Produced by James Allen Kamp, creator of the most excellent comedyofchicago.com. DJ Tone-Knee kicks off the evening at 6:00 p.m. Stand-up showcases at 7:30 p.m. and 9:00 p.m. RSVP for free admission. Early arrival recommended. Seats go fast! Always a great, diverse line-up of Chicago’s top comedians and surprise drop-ins.
7:30 p.m. Chris Trani hosts Danny Dubin, Derek Smith, and headliner Adam Burke.
9:00 p.m. Joe Kilgallon hosts Danny Dubin, Vincent Bryant, and headliner Taneshia Rice.
Chicago Underground Comedy Film Fest at Beat Kitchen, 2100 W. Belmont, 9:30 p.m. An evening of short films and sketches, plus Sarah Squirm, Megan Stalter, Richie Owens and more TBA.
WEDNESDAY, MAY 30
The Onion Comedy and Arts Festival Begins! Thru Sunday. Tonight: I Only Listen to the Mountain Goats, A Conversation with The Onion, and Apres le Deluge: The Buddy Cole Monologues. Follow link for tickets, venues and other details.
You Joke Like A Girl at Volumes Bookcafe, 1474 N. Milwaukee, 7:00 p.m. Hosted by Elyse Nylin.
7:00 p.m. Open Mic sign-up: 15 spots, 4 minutes each
7:15 p.m. All-women’s Comedy Open Mic
8:45 p.m. All-women’s Comedy Showcase with Olivia Corkery Perry, Amy Bessette, Mary Zee, and Carma Nibarger.
[LAST SHOW!] Julia Sweeney: Older & Wider at Second City, 1616 N. Wells, 8:00 p.m. Sit in the living room of a favorite Saturday Night Live alum while she tells you the best stories of her post-SNL life. Well, it’s not actually Julia Sweeney’s living room, but she has a knack for connecting with audiences and making any venue feel like home. The evening is about her ups and downs, relationships, parenting, and what it’s like to be famous and then fit back into everyday life on the North Shore (in Wilmette). Don’t miss!
Comedians You Should Know at Timothy O’Toole’s, 622 N. Fairbanks Court, 9:30 p.m. An evening that lives up to its name. Ricky Gonzalez hosts Allison Dunne, Jonah Jurkens, Liza Treyger, Jim Flannigan, Ed Towns, and Sean Flannery.
Verified Laughs at The Laugh Factory, 3175 N. Broadway, 8:00 p.m. Stand-up’s rising stars compete for the coveted “Most Verified” title. The show ends with a 30-minute set from an established headliner.
THURSDAY, MAY 31
The Onion Comedy and Arts Festival! Thru Sunday. Tonight: “The Hollywood Handbook,” Clickhole Live!, and Apres le Deluge: The Buddy Cole Monologues. Follow link for all show times, venues and other details.
FRIDAY, JUNE 1
The Interview Show at The Hideout, 1354 W. Wabansia, 6:30 p.m. Mark Bazer’s always witty and intriguing show airs on PBS. Tonight Mark interviews J.A. Adande (Director of Sports Journalism at Northwestern, Former ESPN Columnist), Scott Thompson (Kids in The Hall) and Sarah Sherman (Helltrap Nightmare).
The Onion Comedy and Arts Festival! Tonight: David Cross, Bitch Sesh Live, Apres le Deluge: The Buddy Cole Monologues. Thru Sunday. Follow link for all showtimes, venues, and other details.
Rocky LaPorte at Evanston Rocks, 1012 Church St., Evanston, 8:00 p.m. Rocky LaPorte is a former Chicago truck driver who is now a nationally touring headliner. He was also a top-five finalist on Season 8 of Last Comic Standing and featured on Showtime’s The Godfathers of Comedy. He will be at Club Arcada in St. Charles on Saturday night.
Let’s Make it Perfectly Queer at Second City at Second City’s Blackout Cabaret, 230 W. North Ave., 9:00 p.m. A celebration of Pride. Fridays and Sundays thru June 24. Follow link for all show times.
Freakfest at Under the Gun Theater, 956 W. Newport, 10:00 p.m. Packing the theater each week, comedians “do their weirdest stuff” for an enthusiastic crowd. Hosted by Megan Stalter and Richie Owens.
SATURDAY, JUNE 2
Pure & Weary present The Monster Show at Second City’s Judy’s Beat Lounge, 230 W. North Ave., 9:00 p.m. Pure & Weary (a/k/a Katherine Biskupic and Leah Frires) take on “historical monsters, internal monsters and the nightmare monsters of today to create their own damsel-less ghost story.” Please check out my interview with Katherine and Leah here.
The Onion Comedy and Arts Festival! Today: The Comedy Resistance Presents: An evening with Bob Odenkirk and Friends, How Did This Get Made?, Judge John Hodgman, Helltrap Nightmare, Jo Firestone, Late Late Breakfast, Apres le Deluge: The Buddy Cole Monologues. Follow link for all show times, venues and other details.
We Still Like You: Pride and Shame at The Storefront, 1579 N. Milwaukee, 10:00 p.m. A special Pride edition of “We Still Like You” for Pride Month. Danii Gallegos and Mike Gifford co-host. Featuring Maya May, Molly Kearney, Himabindu Poroori and TBA.
SUNDAY, JUNE 3
Women of Jewish Comedy at The Spertus Institute, 610 S. Michigan Ave, 2:00 p.m. Comedy scholars Anne Libera and Grace Kessler Overbeke talk about Jewish women’s impact on American comedy “from Fanny Brice to Joan Rivers to Sarah Silverman, and from the Borscht Belt to Broad City.”
The Onion Comedy and Arts Festival! Last day! Chris Gethard, How Did Get This Made? Apres le Deluge: The Buddy Cole Monologues. Follow link for all show times, venues and other details.
Matt Damon Improv at The Annoyance Theatre, 851 W. Belmont, 9:30 p.m. Matt Damon Improv is women of color with an original take on how comedy can connect people and get us listening. “Each weekly show promises to be ‘Intersectional AF’ and provide a safe platform for women of color to share performances that confront the current racial tension and social issues within the world around us.”
You can stay up to date with Comedians Defying Gravity by typing your email address in the box and clicking the “create subscription” button. My list is completely spam, spam, spam, spam free, and you can opt out at any time.