Last Thursday night was the grand opening of New York City’s newest club, The Standing Room in Queens New York. The new owners completely renovated the space, formerly The Laughing Devil comedy club, and the result is a sleek yet cozy space with a very modern clean look, wooden tables and chairs, and a beautiful bar where signature cocktails are “designed.”
It was a great opening, with one of New York’s best comedy producers, Amy Hawthorne making sure everything ran smoothly. Everyone had the chance to try some of the bar’s impressive signature cocktails before the show, and Luis J. Gomez hosted a stellar show with comedians Big Jay Oakerson, Judah Friedlander, Chris Distefano, Monroe Martin, and others performing.
The showroom is intimate, seating about 35 spaciously and comfortably with room to pack more in if necessary. It’s an odd set up, with the stage facing only two tables and a wall, and the majority of club patrons sitting to either side of the stage– a detail that made its way into several of the opening night comedians sets. But as unorthodox as the staging may be, The Standing Room should prove to be a great addition to the burgeoning Long Island City comedy scene which includes nearby clubs The Creek and the Cave, and QED.
The Standing Room comes from the team that created The Stand in Manhattan – Patrick Milligan, Cris Italia, Paul Italia, and David Kimowitz. They plan to leverage the comedians they book for The Stand to bring in high-caliber big names but they’re also looking to use the space to give stage time to some younger developing comedians that they aren’t able to accomodate to at their Manhattan club. According to their press release, The Standing Room will also offer music, sports, and trivia nights.
The cocktail menu was designed by renowned Mixologists Shige Kabashima (of Angel’s Share) and Joji Watanabe (of The Experimental Cocktail Club) and it’s exotic featuring unique ingredients, creative presentation and a genuine cocktail experience. Maybe you’re not into having your drink set on fire, or served in a hollowed out bell pepper, but that’s okay– there are no drink minimums if you want to watch the show, and plenty of beers to choose from.