Lily Tomlin, Amy Schumer, and SNL’s original cast/writers to headline 2018 Lucille Ball Comedy Fest and the opening of the National Comedy Center

Years in the making, the National Comedy Center will celebrate its grand opening this August in Jamestown, New York — just time for the annual Lucille Ball Comedy Festival, which will include appearances and performances by Lily Tomlin, Amy Schumer, and Dan Aykroyd with other original members of Saturday Night Live.

Tickets will go on pre-sale to Members on April 27, and on sale to the public May 4 at

On Aug. 2SNL cast members Dan Aykroyd, Laraine Newman and Garrett Morris, along with original writer, Alan Zweibel, will come together at the Reg Lenna Center for the Arts to share stories and laughs in a conversation about the show’s early years. Amy Schumer and Friends will perform Aug. 3. “An Evening of Classic Lily Tomlin” happens Aug. 4.

Each of these artists has played a significant role in shaping and redefining comedy as we know it today.  From sketch to stand-up to TV to film, the landscape has been forever changed due to the creativity and, frankly, bravery, of Lily Tomlin and Amy Schumer. Laraine Newman, Dan Aykroyd, Garrett Morris and Alan Zweibel challenged the nation’s sensibilities about comedy in what they brought to air in 1975, introducing what became one of the very few cultural phenomena to endure more than four decades,” said National Comedy Center Executive Director Journey Gunderson.

Offering four brilliant minds from the show that broke the late night television mold is not only a glimpse into the creation of Saturday Night Live but also a sampling of the National Comedy Center‘s core mission to share the story of comedy,” notes Malachi Livermore, Director of Operations and Programming for the National Comedy Center.

Other highlights announced today:

  • Violet Ramis Stiel will offer a stage conversation about her new book,Ghostbuster’s Daughter: Life with My Dad, Harold Ramis.”
  • Festival partner COZI TV will present a very special Conversation with Fran Drescher” as part of the opening week events. The Nanny star will share insights on her storied life and career influences, including Lucille Ball, on August 3.

Much more will be announced in the weeks to come.

The National Comedy Center also operates the Lucille Ball Desi Arnaz Museum, and for the last 25 years has produced the Lucille Ball Comedy Festival with performers including Jerry Seinfeld, Jay Leno, Lewis Black, Trevor Noah, Joan Rivers, Ellen DeGeneres, Paula Poundstone, Nick Offerman, Ray Romano, Bob Newhart, The Smothers Brothers and more than 100 other comedic artists.

Sean L. McCarthy

Editor and publisher since 2007, when he was named New York's Funniest Reporter. Former newspaper reporter at the New York Daily News, Boston Herald and smaller dailies and community papers across America. Loves comedy so much he founded this site.

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