This time, we’re taking a look at the 6 Best Comedy Clubs in NYC. Listen, we at NYBits love comedy. (Maybe even more than magic.) In fact, we consider ourselves to be the resident comedians (gotta break up the workday somehow!) But we can safely say that New York City’s comedians and comedy venues easily surpass us in terms of talent, experience, and um, world renown. So, if you don’t prefer our off-kilter brand off comedy (honestly, rude!), maybe you’d love the NYC places on our list.
Honestly, we cannot get into our 6 Best Comedy Clubs in NYC list without first mentioning Gotham Comedy Club. Located off West 23rd Street, this venue has been around since the 1990s, with unique retro décor that makes you feel like you’re in the 1920s. Moreover, many of the comedy greats, such as Chelsea Peretti and Lewis Black have performed at Gotham. Additionally, Gotham offers distinct types of classes for those interested in comedy – you can get into comedy writing bootcamps or stand-up workshops and everything in between.
Another NYC great is the Comedy Cellar off MacDougal. Founded by Bill Grundfest in the early 1980s, it’s ubiquitously considered to be the best comedy club in the United States. Many well-known comedians, from Judah Friedlander and Ben Bailey, all the way to Nikki Glaser and Dave Attell have been known to do sets at the Cellar.
Jon Stewart and Aziz Ansari also apparently started their comedic careers here, and other celebrity performers in the past have included Patton Oswalt, Robin Williams, Chris Rock and Bill Burr. You can buy tickets online to see your favorite comedians, and then afterwards, also go to the Olive Tree Café, which is right on top of the venue, for rather good Middle Eastern/American food.
If you’re a sucker for “Yes, and?” and want to “Improv Your Life”, we love the People’s Improv Theater, affectionately known as the PIT, off 29th Street. Started in the early 2000s, the PIT not only hosts comedy classes, but also jams and open mic nights for budding comedians to try out new material on a fresh audience.
You can also book tickets online for upcoming shows and hire PIT performers for your corporate events or parties. Many of your favorite comedians were former PIT performers, such as Kristen Schaal (Louise from Bob’s Burgers), Michelle Wolf and Ellie Kemper.
Another popular local favorite is The Stand, a fixture in the Gramercy Park area. They not only host well known comedians (Tracy Morgan and Jessica Kirson), but also open for amateurs and up and coming comics who will leave you rip-roaring laughing. You can buy tickets online, view their entire portfolio of comedians, look at their menus, buy from their online store, and book their event spaces. We’re so sure you’re going to love The Stand!
Another fan favorite is Caroline’s on Broadway, home to breakout artists. Caroline’s also does a wonderful job of putting on comedy festivals, shows, and showcasing some real home-grown talent, such as Ben Brainard, Michael Rappaport, and Jared Goldstein. You can not only take advantage of Caroline’s menu, but also take advantage of group sale tickets – we know you’ll love Caroline’s as much as we do!
Lastly, wrapping up the 6 Best Comedy Clubs in NYC, we also love Dark Horse Comedy Club, off Murray Street. They do an amazing job of showcasing up-and-comers (brought to the public by the same crew that gave us Tribeca Comedy Lounge). The comedians that Dark Horse shows are just on the cusp of making their mark – we’re sure you’ll agree!
How do you like our list of the 6 Best Comedy Clubs in NYC so far? Any other NYC clubs that you think we should write about? Let us know!