America wants to laugh. With so many depressing news reports, reality show weeping and drama, drama, drama, comic relief is a welcome phenomenon. Past and present, some of the top comedic performers have graced various comedy club stages right here in Los Angeles. To explore improv, stand-up and open mic, read on for the best comedy club venues in town.
The World Famous Comedy Store
8433 Sunset Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90069
The Comedy Store is where famous acts have gotten their start and up-and-coming comedic talent do their stand up routines. Still going strong after 40 years, the venue is still run by the original Shore family. This comedy nightspot has seen such funny comedic namesas Robin Williams, Richard Pryor, Sam Kinison, Louie Anderson, Jim Carrey, Chris Rock and Chelsea Handler. This iis where these guys polished their craft in front of live audiences.The Comedy Store houses three separate stages: The Belly Room, the Main Room and the Original Room, al offering audiences the chance to LOL. Regulars not to be missed include The C Word Show, featuring the funny Kristal Oates in the Belly Room, The Main Room’s 14 Headliners show and the Original Room’s Bobby Lee. Guests should always be on the lookout for surprise drop-ins by the likes of Sarah Silverman, Amy Schumer, Dave Chappelle and Louis C.K.
The Groundlings Theater & School
7303 Melrose Ave.
Los Angeles, CA 90046
Known for good old-fashioned improv and sketch comedy theater, The Groundlings comedic troupe has been making local audiences laugh for more than 35 years. The Groundling’s School is a feeder to the company of 30, who write and perform at the various shows each week and coach at the school. Many funny people have trained and participated in The Groundlings, including Will Ferrell, Kristen Wiig, Phil Hartman, Lisa Kudrow, Jon Lovitz, Larraine Newman, Will Forte, Maya Rudolph, Phil LaMarr, Chris Kattan, Julia Sweeney, Ana Gasteyer and many more. These hilarious performers have set the stage for today’s up-and-comers. There are several shows that will have you belly laughing because you never know what the performers are going to say next. Check the Main Shows, Completely Different Late Shows, Cookin’ With Gas, and Crazy Uncle Joe.
The World Famous Laugh Factory
8001 Sunset Blvd.
Hollywood, CA 90046
Another Hollywood comedy staple, The World Famous Laugh Factory and Founder Jamie Masada have introduced some of the most celebrated comedians of all time, including Milton Berle and Bob Hope, Andy Kaufman and Rodney Dangerfield, Ellen DeGeneres, Roseanne Barr and Phyllis Diller, Steven Wright, Jay Leno, Bernie Mac, Bill Maher and Mo’Nique, Flip Williams, Jonathan Winters and Robin Williams. Catch All-Star Comedy shows at 8pm and 10pm throughout the week; late-night owls can get their cackle on at the 11:59 p.m. Midnight Madness show on Saturdays. Masada and his Laugh Factory team bring in a full lineup of top comedic talent from all over the country.
Largo At The Coronet
366 N. La Cienega Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90048
A mix of Hollywood vibe and nightclub mood, Largo at the Coronet is a hidden comedic gem. The lowly lit club showcases music and comedy acts in an intimate setting. A variety of creative and fresh comics are booked here such as the all-African American improvisation cast “The Black Version” Seth Rudetsky, who performs his his hilarious one-man show “Deconstructing Broadway;” Jeff Garlin, Bill Hader, Judd Apatow, and Maya Rudolph. Shows often benefit charitable organizations.
M.i. Westside Comedy Theater
1323-A 3rd Street Promenade
Santa Monica, CA 90401
Located in the alley behind Third Street Promenade between 3rd and 4th streets, M.i. Westside Comedy Theater is a whole lot of laughs. Founded by six guys from the improv group Mission IMPROVable at UMASS Amherst, M.i. Westside Comedy Theater features more than 50 stand-up comedians in the troupe. The owners perform regularly for free on Thursday nights at 10 p.m. in The Grind. Following The Grind is The Jam at 11pm, when the theater opens up the mic to anyone in the audience who wants to jump up and do some improv scenes. Check out the Mission IMPROVable home show every Friday and Saturday night at 10pm It’s a lot of fun and a lot of laughing. Special drop-ins have included Dave Chappelle, Judd Apatow, Zach Galifianakis, Damon Wayans, Howie Mandel, Laura Kightlinger, Bobcat Goldthwait and many more.
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