Stand up comedian, Jack Martin, performs at the Raven Lounge in Philly, courtesy of @C_C_Comedy and filmed by @SuperDPS
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Every Thursday night, the Raven Lounge in downtown Philadelphia makes the radical transformation from a hip, scenester club to a hip, scenester club with Stand Up comedy. It’s incredible. The Raven features modestly-priced drinks with the mandatory Philly specials, toys and games scattered around the tables and bar, and a ceiling covered in the ramblings of drunk chicks with glow pens. Needless to say, it’s an interesting locale. It is upstairs, however, where the Thirsty Thursday magic takes place. Comedians gather by the droves to perform on a small stage for a comfortably-sized audience. For this many funnymen (and women), the price tag of “absolutely fucking free” should be a no-brainer.
Comedians at the Raven are often doing their routines in front of fellow performers and a semi-respectful audience, so they use this opportunity to develop new material or further hone what they feel is the best of what they have to offer. As with anything else, the comics can be hit or miss, but you will never leave The Raven disappointed or having not laughed your ass off. Even if a particular comedian isn’t in your taste, the next 3 or 4 will be spot on.
As if we can’t mention this enough, comedy nights at the Raven Lounge every Thursday are run by the good people at Center City Comedy. The team of Cassidy, Cotton and Foley never cease to impress and always bring the best talent in the Philly comedy scene to the masses.
I will be back. Hopefully every week. Keep up the good work, everybody!
As always, here are some featured moments from last week’s revue:
(All footage shot by Alex Gross/SuperDPS.com)
After promoting and advertising this event for quite some time, the sold out Comics on Chestnut event officially went down this past Friday night (7/22/11). The line up was spot-on as always, featuring some old favorites and some fresh faces. Hosted by Jack Martin, the show started off with a roaring crowd, and when it came to the headliner, the extremely talented Derek Gaines, it ended with an eruption of excitement and laughter. The evening featured Tommy Pope, Ian Fidance, Brandon “Ketchup” Wilson, Paul Goodman, Steve Gerben, and Luke Cunningham, and while a few hecklers may have otherwise spoiled some well-crafted acts, the Comedians fought back…hard.
Dealing with hecklers can be the most frustrating part of any comedian’s performance; worse than pure silence, perhaps. Working with stand up material (whether it’s tested or not) is a delicate craft, much like delivering a speech in order to create the desired effect in one’s audience.
Heckling can throw any competent comedian into complete disarray, as they are given a split-second decision to make.
1. Simply tell the person to shut up, or fuck off. Deliver a quick and concise message, hoping it will be biting enough to end it then and there.
2. Encourage the opponent. Make the party feel like everyone is now staring at them instead of the performer, put them on the spot and make them feel foolish.
A risk comes with either response, however. The former simply may not work and force you to continually be interrupted, ruining all chance at continuing your material. The latter may encourage the heckler too much, giving them a false sense of being “part of the show,” and because everyone on Earth thinks they’re absolutely hilarious, you’ll have a huge problem on your hands.
The performers did what they could, both generously and…not-so-generously. It created a bit of hostility and frustration, but the laughs, chuckles and goof-a-bouts never ceased which was very professional.
As usual, SuperDPS.com was there to capture some highlights from the evening; and I absolutely look forward to seeing all of these hilarious gentlemen again very soon.
(All footage shot by Alex Gross/SuperDPS)
New Monthly Comedy Series starting July 22nd! BE THERE!
The process of the stand-up comedian is a ceaselessly interesting one. You can see this process illustrated beautifully in documentaries such as I Am Comic, or you could check out Center City Comedy’s crack-squad of ever-changing and evolving comedians during their weekly goof-a-bouts. As I’m sure I’ve elaborated on before, Center City Comedy hosts weekly shows at the Raven Lounge (1718 Sansom St., Philly) every Thursday evening, and every first Wednesday of the month at Mad River in Manayunk (4100 Main Street., Philly).
While seeing some of the same comedians perform their acts multiple times wouldn’t seem, on the surface, to be an enjoyable experience, these passionate performers are constantly growing and developing their acts to the point that even the familiar routines are bursting with new energy. The up-and-coming comics performing with Center City Comedy are among the bravest and most daring I’ve seen, and they’re only getting better. So, once again, here are some featured performances from the BONERoo line up on 7/6/11 at Mad River.
It’s been a month since I’ve last seen the hilarious crew from Main Street Comedy. Their performances never cease to amaze me and I’m honored to call them…people I’ve met. The lineup is always changing which makes each show interesting and new. This month’s theme was “Bike Race Fever,” to piggyback on the upcoming drunken shit-show that is Philadelphia’s cycling competition.
The show was, as always, at Mad River on Main Street in Manayunk; and hosted by the lovely and exotic, H. Foley. Foley managed the room wonderfully and introduced some comedians who weren’t in the lineup the previous month such as Danny Ozark, Ian Fidance, James Hesky, Jack Martin, Ryan Shaner, and Subhah Agarwal.
The comic styles were all over the map, which certainly kept things fresh; from dick and fart jokes to delightful faux-racism.