Jeffrey Gurian is a writer and comedian in New York who loves to Jump Around. Follow his regular column, right here, to find out what’s happening each week in comedy, and who Jeffrey Gurian ran into this week in and around New York. This week, continuing updates all week from the best shows at the New York Comedy Festival. On Friday night Jeffrey hit up Carnegie Hall to see Amy Schumer, and The Stand.
So I’m on 3 hour sleep, and never even got to take a nap during the day even though I tried to make time for one. My focus was on getting to Carnegie Hall at 8pm to see Amy Schumer and Mark Normand. The place was jam-packed with people. I think it holds around 3,000 and there wasn’t an open seat. A nice surprise was having Kyle Dunnigan do an opening spot. It was Carnegie Hall but he still wore what he’d wear doing a set at The Cellar, a plaid shirt and wrinkled jeans. And as it happened I was sitting with Comedy Cellar owner Noam Dworman, and legendary booker Estee Adoram. It was fun watching them laugh as hard as everyone else, because they’ve seen it all.
Kyle Dunnigan was so funny and he got huge applause. Then Mark Normand ran out as if he was receiving the baton in a relay race. He raced to the mic and proceeded to destroy the audience with his great humor. Noam and I keep exchanging knowing looks at how funny he was. He has a perfect comedy voice. So distinctive. Always sounds sarcastic but not nasty. He remarked that he was never able to afford to come to Carnegie Hall, and now he was appearing there. He’s such a great writer too.
Amy Schumer came out to a standing ovation. Before she even said a word. I think she was touched by it. I was sitting close enough to see. She opened by saying, “This is so fancy a place for how much I’m gonna talk about my pussy!” She was wearing a little black slip dress, I think you call it. It was short and sexy, and she apologized to those people in the front row for not having waxed! She gave two shout-outs from the stage, one to Noam and Estee when she said she travels all over the world but when she’s in New York she spends as much time as she can at her favorite comedy club The Cellar. She also shouted out Rachel Feinstein, who is also very funny and a friend of mine. Amy got another standing ovation when she finished. I was dying to take a photo of her onstage but I didn’t want to get thrown out cause that’s embarrassing, so I waited till the very end and tried to at least get something. It’s not great but it’s something!
Then it was over to The Stand for me where all the action was last night to try to get to Big Jay Oakerson’s show and party. Unfortunately I got there too late, but at least I ran into Fez Whatley from the Ron and Fez Show. Fezzie and I hung out for a while and then he split to get ready for tomorrow at Carolines, when Ron will be judging the New York’s Funniest Finals at 4 P.M. I also got to see Big Jay and it’s a good thing I did. I told him I was coming to Ha! The Musical the next night at 7:30, and then running down to catch Jeffrey Ross’ Roast Battle at The Gramercy Theatre, and I offered him a lift because he’s appearing in both. I was thinking that the next night was Sunday, but it’s not. It’s Saturday and the show is 9:30 so it’s a good thing I saw him.
Instead of leaving right away, I went back to the showroom to see Nick Vatterott do his amazing show. He does such great charcters and he’s very innovative using a techinque of pre-taping certain comments and playing them onstage, a thing I had thought about doing for many years. The difference is that Nick thought about it too, but HE did it. I just kept thinking about it! Before I left I got some inside info from a couple of comics. Nate Bargatze told me he’s working on a TV sitcom in which he stars and it will be announced shortly. He’s repped by Apostle and APA, and he said he’s very grateful for all of his recent success and just hopes it doesn’t all fall apart!
And he had his old friend from Boston Comedy Club days Dan Shaki — who used to perform on my late-night show at The Comic Strip — open for him. Then Ari Shaffir told me he’s got two big things coming out in January, His first Comedy Central one hour special which he taped just last week at The Comedy Store in LA, and a story teller show which will also be seen on Comedy Central with him, Big Jay Oakerson, Marc Maron, Joe Rogan, Rob Corddry, and more!
Then I left to come home to write my column and try to get some sleep, so I went into the local 711 to get some sustenance when who came in but Kali the comic I had seen at Cipha’s show the night before and an old friend of mine. She will be doing a week at The Creek from Dec. 9th through the 12th. I guess The Creek has a four day week! And she will be appearing in character as Shea Butter, a rapper she created. And Kali and I thought it would be cool to take a photo in 711, so I asked one of the workers to do it, and he did, hence the photo below! Cipha was back at The Stand DJ’ing for a comedy group called Fat Baby who I really wanted to see but it’s not a good look to fall asleep in the room!
So now if I’m smart I’ll try and get some sleep in preparation for tomorrow’s events! I’M OUT!!!
I’ll be back tomorrow with more news and updates from the New York Comedy Festival which continues through Sunday night. As always check out my weekly column Monday mornings on The Interrobang for more updates from the New York comedy scene, as I continue to jump around.
Pictured below from left to right Kali and Jeffrey in front of the 7-11 rack of snacks, Jeffrey and Nick Vatterott, Jeffrey and Big Jay Oakerson