The 2017 New York Comedy Festival marked the beginning of The Festival’s partnership with TBS which included the first-ever TBS Comedy Hub at the new hotel property PUBLIC. TBS and The Festival programmed various activations throughout the week including live shows and podcasts at the PUBLIC Arts performance space. The TBS Comedy Hub served as the festival’s official headquarters where fans and NYCF attendees gained free access to TBS-curated programming, all-star talent and fan-forward experiences. Also new to The Festival in 2017 was the addition of The Second City Pop Up Training Center for which The Second City came to New York City for the first time in partnership with Carolines. The center includes a selection of improvisation, writing and stand-up workshops. Headliners for the festival were 2 Dope Queens, Vir Das, Chris Hardwick, How Did This Get Made?, truTV’s The Impractical Jokers Starring The Tenderloins, Lovett or Leave It, Bill Maher, Jim Norton, Nick Offerman, Brian Regan, Tom Segura, Iliza Shlesinger, Kevin Smith and Ron White. Additionally, Conan O’Brien brought his show CONAN to the Apollo Theater for one week of shows. Stand Up for Heroes returned for its eleventh year featuring performances by Hasan Minhaj, John Mulaney, John Oliver, Jon Stewart and Red Hot Chili Peppers with Leslie Odom, Jr. on hand to sing the national anthem.
What is the King and the Jester? It’s one of the unlikeliest comedy tours of 2018. Talk show host and television icon Larry King is teaming up with comedian and fellow broadcaster Dennis Miller to tour the country telling stories and stand up– together.
Both personalities are known for conversational banter, they both love sports and politics, and apparently, they share an interest in classic movies, family and marriage. Promising a show suitable for all ages, the duo will be Dennis quipped, how the tour came about, “For many years I wanted to call in to the Larry King Show but I was too intimated… so I thought, I will just do a show with him.” Larry added, “Dennis Miller is one of the funniest, brightest and insightful people I’ve ever interviewed. I’m really looking forward to sharing the stage with him for a memorable evening of comedy, storytelling and laughter. See ya there!” Dennis was a guest on Larry’s ORA talk show last spring. The duo had such a good time together talking about the state of comedy and current events, they decided to take that same chemistry and put it on the stage.
The tour kicks off at The Comerica Theatre in Phoenix AZ on Saturday, June 2nd at 7:00PM. Additional dates have yet to be announced. Tickets are on sale today and are available by calling the Box Office at 602-379-2888 or by going to Ticketmaster.com.
Dennis Miller is a five-time Emmy award winner for his HBO talk show Dennis Miller Live. Currently, Miller can be heard on his new weekly podcast Red Circle Sports with Dennis Miller (PodcastOne!) and his twice daily syndicated, 60-second radio feature The Miller Minute.
Larry King is a multi-awarding winning television host which includes two Peabody Awards and 10 Cable ACE Awards. King currently hosts Larry King Now which airs on ORA, Hulu and RT America along with Politicking with Larry King, a weekly political talk show.
The National Comedy Show opens its doors during the annual Lucille Ball Comedy Festival in August and comedy fans can expect to see some legends on hand. Tuesday the Center announced that comedy super celeb Amy Schumer will take the stage, as will comedy icons Lily Tomlin and Fran Drescher. Original Saturday Night Live castmembers Dan Aykroyd, Laraine Newman and Garrett Morris, plus original SNL writer Alan Zweibel will also be in Jamestown NY for the Center’s grand opening, and Harold Ramis’ daughter Violet will speak.
The lineup furthers the tone that the center has been setting for taking its mission to honor comedy seriously.
On August 2nd, Saturday Night Live cast members Dan Aykroyd, Laraine Newman and Garrett Morris, along with original writer, Alan Zweibel, will come together at the Reg Lenna Center for the Arts to share stories and laughs in a conversation about the show’s early years.
“Offering four brilliant minds from the show that broke the late night television mold is not only a glimpse into the creation of Saturday Night Live but also a sampling of the National Comedy Center‘s core mission to share the story of comedy,” notes Malachi Livermore, Director of Operations and Programming for the National Comedy Center.
Emmy Award-Winning Comedian Amy Schumer will perform Friday, August 3rd with her show “Amy Schumer and Friends” at Jamestowns’ Northwest Arena, while comedy legend Lily Tomlin brings “An Evening of Classic Lily Tomlin” center stage at Reg Lenna Center for the Arts on August 4th.
Continuing an annual series of National Comedy Center dialogues, Violet Ramis Stiel will offer a stage conversation about her new book, “Ghostbuster’s Daughter: Life with My Dad, Harold Ramis.” Festival partner COZI TV will present a very special “Conversation with Fran Drescher” as part of the opening week events. The Nanny star will share insights on her storied life and career influences, including Lucille Ball, on August 3rd.
“Each of these artists has played a significant role in shaping and redefining comedy as we know it today. From sketch to stand-up to TV to film, the landscape has been forever changed due to the creativity and, frankly, bravery, of Lily Tomlin and Amy Schumer. Laraine Newman, Dan Aykroyd, Garrett Morris and Alan Zweibel challenged the nation’s sensibilities about comedy in what they brought to air in 1975, introducing what became one of the very few cultural phenomena to endure more than four decades,” said National Comedy Center Executive Director Journey Gunderson.
The opening celebration will feature more than 50 events and 40 artists that include the innovators, creators, and legends of comedy. Tickets will go on pre-sale to Members on April 27th at noon, and on sale to the public May 4th at noon at NationalComedyCenter.org.
Featuring more than 50 immersive and interactive exhibits designed by leading museum design firms in the world, the 37,000 square foot National Comedy Center visitor experience tells the story of comedy from its origins through the present and is the first non-profit cultural institution and national-scale attraction dedicated to the art of comedy.
Additional programming includes five comedy showcases featuring comedians with credits including appearances on Colbert, Conan, and Last Comic Standing. The weekend will also feature National Comedy Center dialogues, exhibit unveilings, block parties, free kids’ comedy shows featuring the critically-acclaimed Story Pirates and tribute events honoring the influential careers of the “First Couple of Comedy”, Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz. Additional events will be added to the lineup in the coming months.
The National Comedy Center embodies Lucille Ball’s vision for her hometown of Jamestown, New York to become a destination for the celebration of comedy in a way that educates, fosters and inspires. Design has been led by the most prominent cultural and interactive design firms in the world whose portfolios collectively include the award-winning 9/11 Memorial Museum, The National Underground Railroad Freedom Center, The College Football Hall of Fame, and SNL: The Experience. The $50 million endeavor was made possible by state, federal and private philanthropic support including partnership with I LOVE NEW YORK™, Governor Andrew Cuomo and New York State’s Empire State Development.
In a special press briefing at the site on Friday, March 30, United States Senator Charles Schumer announced his push for a congressional designation for the Center. The new designation would officially make the National Comedy Center the nation’s cultural institution dedicated to the art of comedy, recognizing it as the only institution of its kind with the mission of preserving, protecting, and showcasing the art of comedy and its role in our culture.
The National Comedy Center also operates the Lucille Ball Desi Arnaz Museum, and for the last 25 years has produced the Lucille Ball Comedy Festival with performers including Jerry Seinfeld, Jay Leno, Lewis Black, Trevor Noah, Joan Rivers, Ellen DeGeneres, Paula Poundstone, Nick Offerman, Ray Romano, Bob Newhart, The Smothers Brothers and more than 100 other comedic artists.
Located in Jamestown, a city in Chautauqua County and Western New York, the National Comedy Center is in the region of Buffalo, Niagara Falls, Cleveland, Pittsburgh and Toronto.
Tickets may be purchased by Members beginning April 27th and by the public May 4th by visiting NationalComedyCenter.org. Tickets and memberships may also be purchased by calling 716-484-0800 or visiting the festival box office located at 2 W. 3rd Street, Jamestown, NY 14701.
Netflix just ordered 10 episodes of a new comedy series from Will Ferrell and Liz Feldman. The dark comedy centers on a tightly wound widow, and a free spirit with a secret, and the powerful friendship between them. Titled, Dead to Me, Ferrell will EP along with Adam MacKay and Jessica Elbaum. Feldman wrote the script and also will serve as EP and showrunner.
Tiffany Haddish has set Meryl Streep the ultimate challenge and invited her to play her “hood momma” in the “Girls Trip” sequel.
The comedian is a huge fan of the veteran actress and is actively campaigning to get the multi-Oscar winner to join her for the sequel to last years outrageous girls trip.
Haddish broke the rules at the oscars and hurdled the velvet rope on the red carpet to meet the Hollywood royal, confessing she used the magical moment to pitch the idea to Streep.
“I told Meryl that I wanted her to play momma one day,” she told late-night host Seth Meyers during an appearance on his show on Monday. “I want her to be my mother in ‘Girls Trip 2.’
“I think it will be so cool if we find out that (my character) Dina has a white mom!”
Haddish admits she’s had some explaining to do about the plot when she’s in the company of co-stars Queen Latifah and Jada Pinkett-Smith, who can’t see that storyline working.
“I was like, ‘She could have married my dad, see … Maybe my real momma passed and then she married my dad … but she is turnt up (drunk and high) like Dina, and then you find out why Dina is the way she is — because she gets it from her stepmomma, who happens to be Meryl Streep,'” she mused.
And Haddish jokes the role will be another Oscar slam-dunk for the “Mamma! Mia” star: “If you see Meryl Streep turnt up like me, you’ll be like, ‘She can do anything …!’ She’ll get an Oscar for that … I need to see her hood side.”