Day: April 14, 2009

2009 MAC Award nominees

If you thought the ECNYs covered just one part of the New York comedy scene, then perhaps you'll be interested to know who just got nominated for the 2009 MAC Awards. MAC stands for the Manhattan Association of Cabarets & Clubs, which means they're missing a C and maybe an O. Anyhow. The awards will be handed out May 18. Here are this year's comedian nominees. Congrats and good luck! Female Stand-Up: Dena Blizzard, Michelle Buteau, Mary Dimino, Ophira Eisenberg, Maureen Langan Male Stand-Up: Wali Collins, Joe DeVito, Joe DeRosa, Kyle Grooms, Rick Younger Major Male Stand-Up: Mario Cantone, Jim Gaffigan, Greg Giraldo, Tom Papa, Louis Ramey Major Female Stand-Up: Susie Essman, Jackie Hoffman, Jessica Kirson, Lynne Koplitz Improv Comedy Group: Calgary Whalers, Chicago City Limits, Comedy Sportz Musical Comedy Performer/Duo/Group: Booth & Pat, Hedda Lettuce, Shawn...

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Bill Burr’s NHL blog and taxicab confessions

When I met Bill Burr for lunch a couple of weeks ago, he said he was just catching up on a few things in New York City between gigs. Other than getting laundry done and talking to comedy bloggers, the only thing he had scheduled were tickets to the Rangers game. Of course, Burr is a Boston Bruins fan, but his hockey love is legit, so much so that you can tell he's serious about it in his new blog following the Bruins playoff run for the NHL. We joked about how few people seem to care about hockey anymore, and Burr said the better for the sport, because things can get crazy and old-school again and maybe become the sport that many of us fell in love with before. I've got an interview with him coming up later this month, but thought I could share with you this bonus footage I shot with Burr as we rode in a taxicab from lunch to a comedy club. In it, Burr explains how he goes about his weekly podcasts, as well as his feelings about MySpace, Facebook and Twitter. Enjoy (some language is...

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Why is Ellen DeGeneres auctioning off her clothes?

Remember when Ellen DeGeneres came out of the closet and America got Hollywood scared enough to shut down her sitcom, but then she came back to host a daytime talk show and American ladies of all sexual orientations suddenly were not afraid but instead loved her and wanted to share her dance card? Well. Kinda wondering how people will react to the news that Ellen is going back into her closet — to auction off her wardrobe. Ellen's eBay auction is ongoing, with proceeds helping The Humane Society. Bidding already is up to $150 for this plaid shirt Ellen wore when MSNBC talking head Chris Matthews groped her. (via Hollywood...

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Roger Ebert’s guide to joke-telling

So I'm just now reading this essay, or rather, this ode to joke-telling by Chicago Sun-Times film critic Roger Ebert, and before I turn my thumbs in the up or down position, I have to remind myself not to wade into the muck and mire of the comments section and examine only what Ebert wrote. Interesting to learn that before critiquing, the young Ebert aspired to a career in stand-up. Got halfway in before seeing that Ebert is not talking about routines or monologues (as he calls a set), but specifically zeroing in on what he feels are the keys to writing a stand-alone funny joke. He also includes a series of photos profiling stand-ups at a show in Palo Alto, Calif., but never explains why. Just illustration, are they? It would have been nice to include their jokes, too. Anyhow. Digression completed. Here are Roger Ebert's 10 rules for amateurs to follow when attempting to tell a joke in an informal setting… 1. Know the joke. 2. Never step on the punch word. 3. Use a four-letter word if the joke requires it. 4. Never explain. 5. Do not elaborate unnecessarily. 6. Never repeat. 7. Beware of accents. 8. Be careful about ethnic or religious jokes. 9. If it's a long joke, it may be better funnier if it is told quickly. 10. If the joke really works, you...

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Comedy nominees for 2009 Webby Awards

The Webby Awards have announced their 2009 nominees in as many categories as they can get people to pay $295 to get considered for honors, so for what that's worth, here are the comedy-related nods: In Television: The Flight of the Conchords Lip Dub contest In Humor: 23/6 (now folded into HuffPo), FAIL blog, Indecision 2008, South Park Studios, and The Onion. In the Online Film & Video categories (links to videos included): Stickman Exodus ( and 23/6's Get Your War On compete in animation; Rob Corddry (Childrens' Hospital) goes up against Sara Benincasa (Sarah Palin vlogs) and Lil' O'Reilly (Spike Feresten's talk show) in best individual performance; The Onion News Network vies with Funny or Die's Prop 8 musical number for best writing; Awkward Rap (CollegeHumor), episode four of Childrens' Hospital, "New Portable Sewing Machine Lets Sweatshop Employees Work On The Go" (Onion News Network), Paris Hilton responding to John McCain, and Prop 8: The Musical are up for best individual episode; Childrens' Hospital goes up against NBC's The Office, Comedy Central's online The Weekly Evils, Today Now (Onion News Network) and You Suck At Photoshop (My Damn Channel) for best series; The Onion also magically got considered for the actual news category for its election coverage; the Late Night with Jimmy Fallon crew got a nod in the variety category; and It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia is up for...

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