Chicago Comedy Spotlight for New Year’s Eve 2019-2020

Following is the New Year’s Spotlight. Three venues offer family-friendly options: The Blue Man Group, Laugh Out Loud Theater in Schaumburg, and Damon Williams’ Clean Comedy Kickback. Details below.

Thank you for reading Comedians Defying Gravity in 2019. Wishing you a happy and healthy decade ahead and a year as excellent as the laughs about to usher it in!


I’ve seen times and ticket availability change even as I’ve put this calendar together, so please confirm details before heading out. I’m adding new shows as I hear about them, so please check back and email me at if you have a show you’d like me to add now or in the future. Thank you, as always, for reading CDG, and thank you to the spectacular Chicago comedy community for making this blog possible.

The Second City’s NYE Celebration Featuring Do You Believe in Madness, 7:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. The Mainstage Revue.

The Second City’s NYE Celebration Featuring Grinning from Fear to Fear, 7:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. The e.t.c. Revue.

The Second City’s NYE Celebration Featuring Deck the Hallmark, 7:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. “A Greeting Card Channel Original.”

Jimmy Carrane Storytelling Workshop at Green Shirt Studio, 1:00 p.m. “Finding the funny in your story.” Discount for sign-ups before December 17.

Pat Tomasulo at Beverly Arts Center, 7:00 p.m. and 9:30 p.m. The hilarious WGN sports anchor, stand-up, creator and host of Man of the People, one of the best late night comedy shows in television history (please bring it back). Pat kindly spoke with me here.


Steve Cochran at The Raue Center, Crystal Lake, 1:00 p.m. With Steve Cochran, John DaCosse and Mike Toomey.

DeRay’s Comedy Count Down Festival of Funny at Arie Crown Theater, 8:00 p.m. With Michael Blackson, Lil Duval, Rickey Smiley, Bruce Bruce, Red Grant, B Simone, Leon Rogers, Howie Bell, Chico Bean and starring DeRay Davis and co-hosted by Black Ink Crew: Chicago’s Sky Days and Mike Tyson. The Festival runs from December 28-December 31. Different lineup every night and not all Comedians and co-hosts will appear on all nights. Follow link for all details.


FUDGE Presents: The New Years Eve Balls Drop at iO, 8:00 p.m. Zach Freeman wrote about FUDGE in the Chicago Tribune here.

Come On Down: The New Year’s Eve Interactive Show at iO, 8:00 p.m.

Improvised Shakespeare’s New Year’s Eve Spectacular at iO, 8:00 p.m.

Improvised Jane Austen at iO, 8:00 p.m.

Hot Seat: NYE Edition at iO 10:30 p.m.

Comedy Dance Chicago presents: The Interactive New Year’s Eve at iO, 10:30 p.m.

Pat McGann at Zanies Rosemont, 7:30 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Pat has been touring with Sebastian Maniscalco. He recently filmed his own comedy special. He kindly spoke with me here.


Laurie Kilmartin with special guest Michael Palascak at Zanies Chicago, 6:00 p.m., 8:15 p.m. and 10:30 p.m. Michael kindly spoke with me here.

Eddie Brill at The Comedy Shrine, 8:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. Multi-award winning comedian Eddie Brill has more television and comedy credits than I can even list here! For starters, he worked on The Late Show with David Letterman for seventeen years as the audience warm-up and for eleven of those years, as Stand-Up Comedy Talent Coordinator. Follow link for all details.

The Practical Theatre Company Presents A “Big Holiday Bag O’ Fun!” at Studio5, Evanston, 9:00 p.m. The Practical Theatre company returns to Chicago with classic and new material! PTC was one of the funniest, most influential companies in Chicago comedy history. Original cast members Victoria Zielinski, Paul Barrosse and Dana Olsen are here with Steve Rashid, Gary Kroeger, Eva B. Ross, Daniel Rashid, Emilia Barrosse and Reilly Anspaugh. Tonight through New Year’s Eve.

Epic personal history of The Practical Theatre Company by Paul Barrosse here. (They were all scooped up by Saturday Night Live.)

Baldhead Phillips 3rd Annual New Year’s Eve Comedy Show at Hales Franciscan, 8:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. With Baldhead Phillips, Mike Samp, Jeff B, Comedian Stick and DJDRE.

Chris D’Elia at The Chicago Theatre, 7:00 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. Also December 30 at 8:00 p.m.

Paul Farahvar and Darryl Schmitz at the Hilton Chicago, 8:00 p.m.


New Year’s with Rocky LaPorte at The Improv, 7:30 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. Early show includes optional dinner package. New Year’s Eve celebration is the late show which offers light snacks and champagne, but no dinner option. Rocky LaPorte is great no matter which you choose. Follow link for all details.


Calvin Evans at The Comedy Bar, 7:30 p.m. This award-winning comedian is a Second City graduate whose television credits include South Side, Chicago PD, Sherman’s Showcase, and Shameless. He has also performed standup on the Kevin Hart Comedy Central series Hart of The City, LOL @ JFL and TruTV Laff Tracks.


Totally ‘80s NYE Party at ComedySportz, 5:00 p.m., 7:00 p.m., 10:00 p.m. Includes options to customize your evening.

Clean Comedy Kickback at House of Hope, 10:30 p.m. Damon Williams hosts Jay Lamont, Myra J and other specials guests. This is a family friendly show.

Comedy Cabaret at The Comedy Bar, 10:30 p.m.

Shezam at Laugh Out Loud Theater, Chicago, 8:30 p.m.

New Year’s Celebration at Laugh Out Loud Theater, Schaumburg, 7:30 p.m. and 10:00 p.m. The 7:30 p.m. show is kid-friendly.

Booze Your Own Adventure at Laugh Out Loud Theater, Chicago, 10:00 p.m.

New Year’s Bash at The Laugh Factory, 8:00 p.m. and 10:30 p.m.

8:00 p.m. Chris Bader, Correy Boyd-Bell, Amy Shanker, Jonah Jurkens, Janelle James, Kellye Howard, Dave Helem and more TBA.

10:30 p.m. Paul Farahvar, Correy Boyd-Bell, Jeff Arcuri, Sarah Perry, Janelle James, Joey Villagomez and more TBA.


New Year’s Eve Comedy and Music at Bridges’ Scoreboard, Griffith, Indiana, 8:30 p.m. Dinner, music and comedy, including some great Chicago comedians. Michelle Krajecki hosts Jayson Acevedo, Sharkie, and Ed Smaron. Music by Teddy M. Please arrive before show if you’re ordering dinner. Follow link for all details.


Blue Man Group at Briar Street Theatre, 1:00 p.m., 4:00 p.m., 7:00 p.m., 10:00 p.m. The two early shows (1 p.m. and 4 p.m.) are kid-friendly NYE celebrations.

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.


Leave a Reply