The Upright Citizens Brigade opened its third full-time comedy theater on Tuesday night — its second in Manhattan — with the long-awaited launch of UCBeast.
Whether you decide to say it as UC Beast or UCB East, the new 124-seat venue instantly upturns and reinvigorates the East Village comedy scene. Located just a block north of the former Mo Pitkins, UCBeast already has attracted several regular weekly shows to relocate from surrounding bars in the East Village and Lower East Side. Hot Soup moved down from 14th Street and switches from Fridays to Sundays, It is It slides over from Pianos, while Rubber Bullets is now going by After Hours with Gene Hackman & Friends. Totally JK also makes the move, while the popular Whiplash show late Monday nights will remain at the main UCB Theatre in Chelsea.
UCBeast opened “soft” last night with a double-feature screening of Wild Girls Gone (a 2007 indie film produced and conceived by the UCB’s Amy Poehler, Matt Walsh, Matt Besser and Ian Roberts) followed by Mystery Team (the 2009 movie made by UCB darlings Derrick Comedy — Donald Glover, DC Pierson and Dominic Dierkes — and co-starring Aubrey Plaza).
New UCB artistic director Nate Dern welcomed a small audience to the venue last night.
Two Boots Pizza, meanwhile, welcomed the UCB by hand-delivering a custom-made pie to the crew. Whether they’ve renamed “The Bird” or created an all-new flavor in their Hot Chicks Pizza, it’s a tasty concoction.
UCBeast features two entrances — an as-of-yet unsigned entry into the theater from East 3rd Street, and the bar entry along Avenue A, on either side of the Two Boots. If you’re going to a comedy show, go to 3rd Street, then exit afterward into the bar.
Live shows begin tonight. Here is the opening week schedule for UCBeast. Expect the UCB to have either a new site or a redesigned version of its existing UCB Theatre site with further schedule updates.
- Wednesday 9/7
7:30pm – $5 – Outlook of the Poet + Two Man Movie
9:00pm – $5 – Doppelganger + Cheating On Harold (this week: Standard Oil + Very Good Kiss)
11:00pm – free – The Improv Jam (hosted by Grandma’s Ashes)
- Thursday 9/8
6:00pm – free – Oh, Hey Guys (storytelling open mic, hosted by John Flynn)
7:30pm – $5 – Adam Wade: BIG HEART
9:00pm – $5 – Totally JK (hosted by Joe Mande and Noah Garfinkel)
11:00pm – free – Gutbucket (stand-up open mic, hosted by Rob Stern and Amber Nelson)
- Friday 9/9
7:30pm – $10 – Diamond Lion
9:00pm – $10 – Creaghead & Company Industrial Showcase
11:00pm – $5 – Gentrify
- Saturday 9/10
7:30pm – $10 – AIRWOLF: Let’s Go Back To Your Place
9:00pm – $10 – The Extended Play E.P. Music Album Release Party with TJ Miller
11:00pm – $5 – Underground Americana (w/ Jeff Rubin, Lang Fisher and more)
- Sunday 9/11
7:30pm – $5 – Two Fun Men + Off The Cuff
9:00pm – $5 – Hot Soup 11:00pm – $5 – Fresh Out (hosted by Adam Conover)
- Monday 9/12
8:00pm – $5 – Wheelhouse (hosted by Will Hines)
10:00pm – $5 – Improv Nerds
- Tuesday 9/13
8:00pm – $5 – After Hours with Gene Hackman & Friends (Scott Moran and Sara Schaefer)
10:00pm – $5 – It Is It (hosted by Adam Lowitt)
If you want a better sense of what the UCBeast venue looks like, then take a gander at this promo video that Gentrify made for their move into the space this weekend. Roll the clip!