This Week in the Mercury


Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Two Stand Up Shows Tonight

Posted by Andrew R Tonry on Wed, Jun 2, 2010 at 11:07 AM

Sweet Giggling Jesus! Two comedy shows in Portland in one night? You mean I have to choose? Finally a champagne problem...

I wish I could tell you it's just the growth of Portland's stand up scene, but you've got no time for drunken lies. Truth is, while Grumptown's comedy scene is growing, fate is to blame for tonight's overlap.

The boys from Comedy Is OK, the monthly local showcase, usually throw their show on the First Thursday of every month. But this time the Clinton St. Theater was booked, so Wednesday night it is.

June's edition features a number of comedians who've been running a month-long gauntlet through the Portland Amateur Comedy Contest. As well as the two hosts, Andrew Michaan and Mikey Kampann (who also participated), Ian Karmel, Christian Ricketts, Anthony Lopez, and Paul Schlesinger will perform. Karmel and Lopez remain in the final five of the Amateur Contest. They are the front runners. Ricketts was cut, in my mind criminally. The evening also features a number of videos produced by Michaan and Kampmann like this, a reflection on the "Lost" finale:

If Comedy Is OK is your window into Portland's up and coming scene—a ragtag bunch of really talented folks—Hannibal Buress is what they're shooting for. A new addition to the "Saturday Night Live" writing team, Buress performed at the Bridgetown Comedy Festival's epic Sunday night closing show and absolutely killed. He's got an odd, slow rhythm, so allow a minute or two for it to sink in. Opening is Bridgetown founder Andy Wood.

Choosing won't be easy, but I'll do my best to give you a guide: Comedy Is OK is quirky. While you may not necessarily love every moment, I promise you'll be pleasently surprised more than once. You'll be treated to shorter sets from a number of comics coming from different angles. Plus you'll see some of the top amateurs in town, who've been fine tuning their sets for a solid month—they should be sharp.

On the other hand, Buress's show will have arc. When a comedian—and in particular, a pro—has time to really settle in to their pace and rhythm and tell longer stories, the highs only get higher.

So what'll it be?

Comedy Is OK @ Clinton St. Theater - 9PM - $5

Hannibal Buress @ Mississippi Studios - 9PM - $10

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