7 Comedy Shows to Catch in N.Y.C. This Weekend

Our guide to stand-up, improv and variety shows happening this weekend and in the week ahead.

‘ASTRONOMY CLUB: IT’S IN THE STARS’ at Chelsea Music Hall (Nov. 8, 10 p.m.). This New York City group, the first all-black house team at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater, consists of Shawtane Bowen, Jonathan Braylock, Ray Cordova, Caroline Martin, Jerah Milligan, Monique Moses, James III and Keisha Zollar. For this performance, part of the New York Comedy Festival, members of the troupe will ask the audience to share moments that felt magical or otherworldly, and then improvise with that material. You’ll be able to say you saw Astromony Club before the group earned global attention with its forthcoming Netflix sketch comedy series.
chelseamusichall.com

HBO LATINO PRESENTS ‘ENTRE NOS’ at New York Comedy Club East Village (Nov. 8, 8 p.m.). In the past couple of years, under the title “Entre Nos,” HBO Latino has introduced English-language comedy to the channel’s Spanish-language programming, including half-hour stand-up specials from Gina Brillon and Erik Rivera, whose show “Super White” just premiered on Nov. 1. For this New York Comedy Festival night of jokes and storytelling on Friday, Brillon and Rivera will be joined by Aida Rodriguez, Mark Viera and Wil Sylvince.
212-994-9828, newyorkcomedyclub.com

‘KISMET: A COMEDY SHOW OF CHANCES’ at the Knitting Factory (Nov. 11, 8 p.m.). What are the chances, anyhow? Comedians spin a wheel to find out how they will have to perform their usual material in a different way. The wheel may land on telling jokes backward, incorporating audience participation or changing their voice, among other directives. On Monday, Chris Gethard, Chloe Hilliard, Emmy Blotnick and Jay Jurden will try their luck.
347-529-6696, bk.knittingfactory.com

‘LET’S GO, ATSUKO!’ at Chelsea Music Hall (Nov. 9, 8:30 p.m.). Every month in Los Angeles, Atsuko Okatsuka presides over this “woke” take on a Japanese game show, a pilot episode of which she recently taped for the soon-to-debut Quibi streaming platform. The competition poses wokeness-revealing questions to comedians, who also sometimes perform tricks, overcome obstacles or both. On Saturday, Okatsuka is bringing the action to Manhattan for the first time as part of the New York Comedy Festival. Her guests include Wyatt Cenac, Aparna Nancherla, Judah Friedlander and Larry Owens.
chelseamusichall.com

[Read about the events that our other critics have chosen for the week ahead.]

NORM MACDONALD at Carolines on Broadway (Nov. 7-9, 8 and 10:30 p.m.; Nov. 10, 7:30 p.m.). This Canadian-born stand-up has mastered the art of writing and telling jokes that lay out their premises to dry. Macdonald started proving that earlier in his career when he anchored the “Weekend Update” desk for “Saturday Night Live.” His more recent feats include embodying Colonel Sanders for a KFC ad campaign and hosting a talk show for Netflix, where you also can find his 2017 special, “Hitler’s Dog, Gossip & Trickery.” Macdonald is appearing at Carolines as part of the New York Comedy Festival.
212-757-4100, carolines.com

‘THE UNDERCULTURE WITH JAMES ADOMIAN’ at Union Hall (Nov. 9, 7 p.m.). This comedian and impersonator has portrayed Freddie Mercury for an episode of Netflix’s “Historical Roasts,” and toured the United States as Bernie Sanders in a series of mock “Trump vs. Bernie” debates that became TV specials on Comedy Central and Fusion during the 2016 presidential campaign. For this New York Comedy Festival performance, Adomian is joined by other funny impersonators for a live recording of an episode of his podcast on the Forever Dog network.
718-638-4400, unionhallny.com

SHENG WANG at Upright Citizens Brigade at SubCulture (Nov. 8, 9:30 p.m.). Born in Taiwan, raised in Houston and educated in the Bay Area, this former writer for ABC’s “Fresh Off the Boat” weaves captivating portraits of his life without resorting to clichés about the Asian-American immigrant experience. His premises and punch lines offer pleasant surprises, akin to one of the comedians who influenced him: Mitch Hedberg. At the New York Comedy Festival, Wang gets to shine on his own with a headlining show at this NoHo club.
212-366-9231, subculture.ucbtheatre.com

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