In town: Marc Maron. Returning to their comedy hometown: Fatimah Asghar, Jamie Campbell, Jordan Klepper, Luke Null and Michael Palascak (who was on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert last week. Clip below.) Plus, opportunities to see TJ & Dave and Emo Philips.
At Zanies: Russ Williamson (Chicago), Dan Cummins (Chicago), Sam Jay (Chicago), Kevin Brennan (Rosemont), Dr. Bill Miller (St. Charles).
At The Improv: Vince Carone, Whitney Cummings.
At The Laugh Factory: Theo Von
Lots of comedy this fall at the Genesee Theater in Waukegan: Colin Mochrie and Brad Sherwood on September 13, Tracy Morgan on September 14, Paul Rodriguez on September 15, Wayne Brady on September 16, The Amazing Johnathan on October 5, Craig Ferguson on November 3, Piff the Magic Dragon on November 9 and Pablo Francisco on November 18. All details here.
In the news: One of Chicago’s most beloved couples, Cameron Esposito and Rhea Butcher announced via twitter last Wednesday that they are separating. Thousands of fans signaled their support to both. The story was picked up by Vanity Fair, Billboard and other media outlets.
The Chew‘s Carla Hall was in town last week co-hosting Windy City Live. She dropped by the Annoyance Theatre to spend time with the funny, powerful ladies of Matt Damon Improv. You can see it here.
Classes: Fall class registration is now open at Kates University. All classes taught by Kates creator, television co-host and national headliner Kelsie Huff. Register here.
Award-winning comedian/writer/director Paul Thomas will teach solo performance at Second City this fall. Register here.
Did you know that Second City has drop-in “Improv Test Drive” classes on Sunday evening? Details here.
Following is this week’s Spotlight. Please don’t leave home without checking all details!
MONDAY, AUGUST 13
Bentwood Comedy Festival at iO, 1501 N. Kingsbury, 6:00 p.m. iO’s celebration continues through Sunday, August 19. Matt Damon Improv tonight features a special guest. Follow link for all Festival shows and times.
The Riff at Emerald City Coffee, 1224 W. Wilson, 6:00 p.m. Mona Aburmishan hosts a different kind of open mic. Comedians pull a random topic from a hat and give it their most spontaneous best. Meet Mona through this interview in the current issue of Rebellious.
Fatimah Asghar at Volumes Bookcafe, 1474 N. Milwaukee, 7:30 p.m. Fatimah Asghar is the co-creator and writer of the Emmy-nominated Chicago-based comedy series Brown Girls. She is at Volumes tonight to discuss her new poetry collection If They Come For Us.
Best Night Ever at Gman Tavern, 3740 N. Clark, 9:00 p.m. Free stand-up show hosted by Mike O’Keefe with Dave Losso, Jason Melton and Jessica Hong. Every Monday night except for some Cubs home games.
TUESDAY, AUGUST 14
Bentwood Comedy Festival at iO, 1501 N. Kingsbury, 5:00 p.m. iO’s celebration continues through Sunday, August 19. Tonight’s line-up includes Generation Latinx, Hello From the Magic Tavern, a Magic Tavern meet & greet and more. Follow link for all Festival shows and times.
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, Erik Scott, Andy Fruman, Correy Boyd Bell
9:00 p.m. Joe Kilgallon, Maya May, Chris Trani, Marty DeRosa
Chicago Underground Comedy at Beat Kitchen, 2100 W. Belmont, 9:30 p.m. Alums include Cameron Esposito, Hannibal Buress, Kumail Nanjiani and many more. Follow link for tonight’s line-up.
WEDNESDAY, AUGUST 15
Bentwood Comedy Festival at iO, 1501 N. Kingsbury, 6:00 p.m. iO’s celebration continues through Sunday, August 19. Tonight’s line-up includes TJ and Dave! Follow link for all shows and times.
Comedians You Should Know at Timothy O’Toole’s, 622 N. Fairbanks Ct., 7:00 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. Two shows to choose from. The 7:00 p.m. show features twelve comedians auditioning for a chance to be part of this nationally renowned stand-up showcase. The 9:30 line-up is Comedians You Should Know.
THURSDAY, AUGUST 16
Mother Cluckers at LaGrange Skyline Rooftop at Fourteensixteen, 14 Calendar Avenue, La Grange, 7:00 p.m. This “Ladies LOL Comedy Night Out” features comedy, appetizers, cocktails, winetasting and giveaways.
Strip Joker Deluxe at Uptown Underground, 4707 N. Broadway, 8:00 p.m. A body-positive variety show produced by Le Aboav and Spencer Blair. After-party following the show with drink specials, “You Are Beautiful” photo booth and merch. Third Thursdays.
Bentwood Comedy Festival at iO, 1501 N. Kingsbury, 8:00 p.m. iO’s celebration continues through Sunday, August 19. Tonight’s line-up includes SNL’s Luke Null, EbonyEssenceJet, Clickhole and more! Follow link for all shows and times.
[LAST WEEKS!] Wasteland: A Night of Mandolin, Happiness and Others at The Annoyance Theatre, 851 W. Belmont, 8:00 p.m. This show promises to be like no other! We’ve needed a post-apocalyptic bluegrass musical (with puppets) and thankfully, it is here! Directed by Richard Scruggs. Through August 23.
FRIDAY, AUGUST 17
Bentwood Comedy Festival at iO, 1501 N. Kingsbury, 7:00 p.m. iO’s celebration continues through Sunday, August 19. Tonight’s line-up includes Jordan Klepper, Cards Against Humanity and more! Follow link for all shows and times.
Patrick O’Hara at Shakers on Clark, 3160 N. Clark, 8:00 p.m. The hilarious, excellent Patrick O’Hara headlines. Featuring J-Dub the “Ice Man”, Sharron Palm, Mohammad Dar, Marcus Shakes and Eric Mitchell. Hosted by Anna Marie Long and Kate Cullan.
Chalo Haso at Seven Bar and Restaurant, 400 E. Randolph St., 8:00 p.m. Tyler Fowler hosts Sharup Karim, Sabeen Sadiq, Raghu Adibhatla and headliner Vikram Balaji.
YippieFest at Prop Thtr, 3502 N. Elston, 7:00 p.m. Comedy, short films, music, theater. Through Sunday. Follow link for all show times.
Laughstock Comedy Festival at various Woodstock locations. Festival includes fabulous comedy, book signing, workshop. Follow link for all details. Emo Philips, Michael Palascak, Patti Vasquez and more. Friday and Saturday.
How to be Fancy at Second City, 230 W. North Ave., 10:30 p.m. I want to be fancy but sadly, have failed many attempts over my lifetime. Three Little Squids are here to remedy that for all of us who still hold the dream! “This end of summer big bold sketch show is ready to take you to new levels of class and properness. Written and performed by David Tarantino, Elsie How and Laura Petro, these Three Little Squids have a whole new world and a whole show to put on display for all their newest and fanciest peers.” Fridays through August 24.
SATURDAY, AUGUST 18
YippieFest at Prop Thtr, 3502 N. Elston, 1:15 p.m. Comedy, short films, music, theater. Through Sunday. Follow link for all show times.
Laughstock Comedy Festival at various Woodstock locations. Fabulous comedy, book signing, workshop. Festivities begin early afternoon, so follow link for all details. Emo Philips, Michael Palascak, Patti Vasquez, Lincoln Lodge and more.
Just last week …
Bentwood Comedy Festival at iO, 1501 N. Kingsbury, 6:00 p.m. iO’s celebration continues through Sunday, August 19. Tonight’s line-up includes Scott Adsit, Jet Eveleth and more! Follow link for all shows and times.
Therapy Players at McKaw Theater, 1439 W. Jarvis, 8:00 p.m. Chicago’s award-winning all-psychotherapist improv group. “Their revue ‘Phobia Shmobia’ won a standing ovation at the Anxiety Disorders Association of America, and they brought down the house at the International Society for the Study of Self Injury, where they performed at the happy hour.” True laugh therapy. Shows typically sell out. Advance purchase recommended.
SUNDAY, AUGUST 19
Jamie Campbell at Side Street Studio Arts, Elgin, 2:00 p.m. Special matinee performance of Jamie’s true life story, The Devil on the Wall or That Time I Got Kidnapped. Jamie got his comedy start in Chicago where his album Tell Me You’re Proud of Me hit #1 on the Amazon charts. He has been touring around the country with this new award-winning show. Jamie was kind enough to speak with me here. [UPDATE 8/15: Show postponed.)
YippieFest at Prop Thtr, 3502 N. Elston, 1:00 p.m. Comedy, short films, music, theater. Through Sunday. Follow link for all show times.
Bentwood Comedy Festival at iO, 1501 N. Kingsbury, 6:00 p.m. Last day! Tonight’s line-up includes a stand-up showcase, Helltrap Nightmare, a wrap party and more! Follow link for all shows and times.
Marc Maron at Thalia Hall, 1807 S. Allport, 7:30 p.m. Thalia Hall’s site says sold out, but I always recommend checking with the box office and vividseats.com closer to show time.
Marc Maron has been a stand-up for over twenty years. At a downturn in his career, he started the acclaimed WTF podcast from his garage. His self-revelatory style inspires the same in his guests. He has since interviewed nearly one thousand people, including President Barack Obama, Conan O’Brien, Robin Williams, Keith Richards, Ben Stiller, Lorne Michaels and many Chicago comedians including Cameron Esposito, Laurie Metcalf, Dwayne Kennedy, W. Kamau Bell, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Adam McKay, Jane Lynch, Hannibal Buress, Amy Sedaris, Matt Walsh, Bob Odenkirk, Matt Braunger, Kyle Kinane, Jason Sudeikis, Jim Gaffigan, John Mulaney, Kathy Griffin, Esther Povitsky, Rainn Wilson, Craig Robinson, Sebastian Maniscalco, Horatio Sanz, Nick Offerman, Pete Holmes, Lauren Lapkus, and Jill Soloway.
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