This Week Around the Industry in Comedy: News From Lisa Lampanelli, Kristen Schaal, Jen Kirkman, Comedy Central and More

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The stories people inside comedy are talking about around the country… 

. . . . . .Lisa Lampanelli is going to be at the country’s most prestigious address for live talks and conversations in June (on June 22nd to be exact)– the 92nd Street Y.  She’ll be joined in conversation by Ron Bennington for An Evening With the Queen of Mean to discuss the radical changes she’s made in her life recently.  She’s single again, 100lbs lighter, has a new haircut, and a new outlook on life.  The only thing that hasn’t changed is that she’s hilarious.  Lisa also has a brand new special coming out on EPIX on June 26, Lisa Lampanelli:Back to the Drawing Board.

. . . . . .Ian Abramson is hosting a live show that is getting a lot of buzz in LA, on the road, and at festivals.  The show is called Seven Minutes in Purgatory (7MiP) and has comedians perform in a sound proofed room to the audience in another room via live feed.  Ian started the show in Chicago, where he’s originally from, and now hosts it as a recurring show at the new UCB Sunset in Los Angeles.  This year he took it to SXSW Comedy as part of Funny or Die’s Hideout.  He’s brought the show to Denver in a book store, and  next month, he hosts it at Bridgetown in Portland, and at The AV Club’s 26th Annual Comedy Festival in Chicago.  The next LA show is May 11th.

. . . . . . This week we talked with Jon Bass, one of the co-stars of Comedy Central‘s brilliant new series Big Time in Hollywood FL  Our story will be out later this week, but here’s a preview. We asked Jon what it was like to get to act with Michael Madsen in what can only be described as some very Michael Madsen-esque scenes.  Bass told us, “It was an honor and a pleasure to get Michael Madsen’s gun halfway down my throat. I never thought when I started college for acting that 5 years later I’d have the opportunity to piss my pants while a gun gets shot in my mouth five times, but to have it done by Michael Madson is the highest honor.”  More from “Big Time in Hollywood FL” coming up this week.

. . . . . . Kristen Schaal must never sleep because not only is she all over television these days, but she just recorded an album with Kurt Braunohler, of their long running Hot Tub Variety Show.  They recorded with ten of their favorite comics over two nights at The Virgil in Los Angeles. Among those who will be featured on the album, are Eddie Pepitone, Kyle Kinane, Beth Stelling, Andres du Bouchet, Eugene Mirman, John Roberts and more.  The double album will be released by Kill Rock Stars.   Kurt is also getting ready to head out on his Roustabout 3 Tour in support of his Comedy Central webseries.  He’ll be hitting up Portland, Newport Kentucky, Fort Wayne Indiana, as well as Charleston and Richmond.

. . . . . . Bridget Everett is down at Moontower Comedy Festival right now and before she headed down to Austin she shared a great story with us about last year’s festival. She said there are parties every night with comics getting drunk after shows, and last year after a big show, a bunch of performers were sitting around talking about getting a van to head out to the world famous bbq place that everyone talks about.  She made plans, but then when she woke up, there was no text about the van or the trip.  She was bummed about getting “pinched out” so she ended up walking to the famous taco place which was fantastic, except for the mile walk in like 98 degree weather.  So if you’re reading this down in Austin, make sure you invite Bridget out for some BBQ this year! Austin owes her one!  And read our entire interview with the fabulous Ms. Everett in our featured stories column this week.

. . . . . .Jen Kirkman has a Netflix Original Special coming out this month!  I’m Gonna Die Alone (And I Feel Fine) debuts on May 22nd. She just wrapped up  a month in Melbourne Australia where she’s been performing her one woman show (yes the same one you’ll be able to watch on Netflix in a few weeks). She’s got another week in Australia touring with the Melbourne International Comedy Festival Roadshow and will be heading back to the states on May 4.  Look for upcoming dates in North Carolina, and Denver.

. . . . . .Comedian portrait photographer Dan Dion has joined the Audible/Rooftop Comedy Family. He’s going to be working in talent development with Rooftop.  Dan is a rewnown photographer who has photographed the best of the best including George Carlin, Lewis Black, David Cross, Stephen Colbert, Conan O’Brien, Robin Williams, Bill Maher, and Lily Tomlin, to name a few.  He’s worked as house photographer for Montreal’s Just for Laughs, SF Sketchfest, as well as at clubs and other venues, and co authored !Satiristas! with Paul Provenza. Dion’s reach in comedy has gone beyond his photography; he’s been in the business for over 20 years, with many contributions to comedy including managing, producing and much more. Dominic DeBene, Director Of Rooftop Comedy Productions said he’s thrilled to have such an established fixture of the comedy world on the team.

. . . . . .Guy Branum just put out his first album!  It’s called Effable and its getting great reviews from critics and fans alike.  Effable was recorded live at Nerdmelt Showroom, and displays both heart and soul with material that is both personal and universal.  Guy riffed about Canada as American fan fiction, LA vs NYC, apartment dogs, and defends his taste in music. Guy has been a correspondent on both Chelsea Lately and Totally Biased with Kamau Bell and has written for shows and print. Right now, he’s writing for the next season of Billy Eichner’s Billy on the Street.

.  . . . . .The Comedy Store recently capitalized on their renewed popularity, adding a second (early) show in the Original Room on Saturdays and a new Headliner show in the Main Room on Mondays.  The first Saturday show was a huge success, while nobody’s really placing bets on the Monday show working out. The Store already has a Monday night show called Potluck that’s free before 9 pm and only $10 after, and features a broader range of comedians you wouldn’t necessarily have the opportunity to see on the weekends (both big headliners who are out of town on weekends for road gigs and younger up-and-comers).  But we’ll see. A new green room lounge is a part of the big changes that  offers a more private place for comedians to hang out or meet with their reps and give celebrities some peace and quiet as they prepare for their sets.  It features a full bar that includes the old bar top from Mitzi Shore’s home, so folks can now plant their elbows in the same place that Pryor and Kinison did.

. . . . . .After a two week sold out run in London, Comedian McQueen just kicked off his Ginger Corvette US tour in New York.  This is the first time McQueen is taking his unique comedy-production tour around the US.  Incorporating improv voiceovers while recreating movie and television scene projections, McQueen presents a fusion of music, comedy and video. The tour kicked off in Troy New York, and continues in May throughout the south in Richmond, Asheville, Nashville, Athens and Charleston before hitting up New England in June.


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