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Posts tagged as local scenes

How the Legal Marijuana Industry Is Helping Grow Denver's Comedy Scene

Comedians like Doug Benson and Stephen Colbert have been getting a lot of joke-mileage out of Colorado’s legalization of marijuana last January. Though after Maureen Dowd wrote about being “curled up in a hallucinatory state for eight hours” in a Denver hotel room after carelessly ingesting too much edible cannabis, Bill Maher editorialized that Colorado “must realize that they are the Jackie Robinson of marijuana legislation,” and that residents “have to get this right, or else you’ll ruin it for everybody.”

The definition of what “getting this right” means is being played out in the Denver comedy scene, where marijuana has become more than just a cultural glue between comics [...]

Splitsider's Guide to Vancouver's Comedy Scene

Live comedy, for many, is an art form that is still confined to two major centers: New York and Los Angeles. Other cities — Chicago, Boston, Toronto, San Francisco, Austin, Montreal, Seattle, and Denver — are often unfairly relegated to the periphery. They represent thriving scenes that matter because they exist, but aside from that are generally ignored and rarely scouted.

If the latter cities make up the periphery of the comedy scene, then it would be fair to say that Vancouver, British Columbia — tucked far away in the Pacific Northwest, three hours from Seattle, six hours from Portland, and too many hours from anywhere else — lies in [...]

Looking for Comedy in Nashville

“One time I took the whole crowd out to the parking lot to have a fire-breathing contest with a guy dressed like Jesus. So it was more of a variety show, I guess. It was a friggin' mess. So I…”

A piercing whaddup explodes towards the bar. It's the last Wednesday of the month at Springwater Supper Club & Lounge, Nashville's most revered/reviled dive bar, located on the edge of Centennial Park equidistant from the Piggly Wiggly and the city's scale model of the Parthenon. Craig Smith is tending bar and telling tales of the Nashville's turn-of-the-century comedy scene when he 's interrupted by the the shrill decrescendo of [...]

Inside 'The [206]', the Most Popular Local TV Comedy in America

The seeds of the most popular local TV comedy in the country were planted 25 years ago, outside a Seattle restaurant when two strangers walked up to Chris Cashman’s dad, Pat, and thanked him for his work on Almost Live, a local sketch comedy show similar to Saturday Night Live.

“They didn't even know him,” Chris, now 36, recalls. "That was the neatest thing I'd ever heard of, and I thought, if I could just do that some day…”

But Almost Live was cancelled in 1999, just as Chris became old enough to join it. The show didn’t generate enough profits for the Texas company that bought the station and the [...]

Discovering the Comedic Melting Pot in the Heart of Berlin

After watching three German comics perform odd character bits with no punchlines, Alex Upatov didn't have high hopes for the Berlin standup comedy scene. He'd popped into the open mic a year and a half ago. He was visiting Berlin from his home in Hanover, where comedy was even less popular. No one seemed to share his passion for the American standup videos he'd been watching online since he was a teenager. So when he noticed the show's host had a Louis CK t-shirt on, Upatov got excited.

"I just thought, 'I've got to talk to this guy,'" Upatov said. Within minutes, the host was driving Upatov to a [...]

Washington DC Is Building Itself an Awesome Indie Comedy Scene

The Washington Post has an intriguing look at the growing indie comedy scene in Washington D.C., a city that for a long time had little more than a couple of clubs and The Capitol Steps. In the past few years, local comics have taken a page from other blossoming comedy cities like Austin, Denver, and Vancouver, setting up independent shows at bars and rock clubs to give time to rising comics who are moving past the city's open mics.

Despite it's smaller scene, D.C. has a solid history of producing good comics, with Dave Chappelle, Patton Oswalt and Wanda Sykes all starting out there decades ago, and rising [...]

Saying Goodnight to Chicago's 'Late Live Show'

Sad news from the Windy City: after three years and more than 50 performances, one of live comedy's most interesting experiments is coming to an end. This Saturday, The Late Live Show will have its final performance.

For those of you who missed our profile of the show last year, here's the basic idea: A bunch of comedy nerds who grew up watching late-night shows decided they wanted one of their own, but knew they would never be able to get it on television, so they just started doing it as a live show in Chi-town venues. We're talking opening monologues, desk bits, interviews — the whole kit and caboodle. It [...]