Get out your date-books, timetables, and city maps, so you can start calculating how to maximize your laugh allowance the last weekend in April. The Moontower Comedy & Oddity Festival has released the full schedule for its four-day feast of funny.
Needless to say, the serious comedy fan will face some tough choices regarding who to see. As the first two Moontowers have shown, any given hour of the evening during the festival's Wednesday-Saturday run offers a wealth of quality comedy. Obviously, the headliners are golden, and you wouldn't go wrong just sticking to the Paramount Theatre this year, which will host Demetri Martin (Wednesday, 7pm), Hannibal Buress (Wednesday, 9:30pm), Dennis Miller (Thursday, 7pm), Maria Bamford (Thursday, 9:30pm), Mike Birbiglia with his new show, Thank God for Jokes (Friday, 7pm), the Kids in the Hall (Friday, 9:30pm and Saturday, 7pm), Marc Maron (Friday, midnight), and Fred Armisen with special guest Ian Rubbish (Saturday, 9:30pm).
But then right next door at the Stateside are gonna be some pretty irresistible shows: When else are you likely to see Colin Quinn's satirical take on American history, Unconstitutional (Friday, 7:30pm)? Or catch Sara Schaefer (MTV's Nikki & Sara Live) and Beth Stelling (the album Sweet Beth) hosting an interactive showcase involving audiences and the Whisper app (Saturday, 10pm)? Or see the imaginative Albuquerque duo who insist on performing in their sleepwear, the Pajama Men? (Wednesday & Thursday, 7:30pm)
And then there's the plethora of showcases! How can you afford to miss out on any show that pulls together James Adomian, Andy Kindler, Mike Lawrence, Nick Mullen, the aforementioned Ms. Schaefer, Rory Scovel, and Ari Shaffir, with our own Kerri Lendo as host? (Four Eyes, Wednesday, 7:15pm, the Parish) Or a Comedy Jackpot that hits just that with Jackie Kashian, Sean Patton, John Ramsey, Esther's Follies alum-now-SNL cast member Noël Wells, and 2006 Funniest Person in Austin Doug Mellard? (Thursday, 9:30pm, the Velv Comedy Lounge) And I can't even start talking about Austin Towers!, the series of showcases, one each night, that shine a spotlight on enormously talented local laughmakers. (Wednesday, 10pm, Parish Underground; Thursday, 7:30pm, Parish Underground; Friday, 7:15pm, the Hideout; Saturday, 7pm, the Velv Comedy Lounge – and just so you know, Austin comics constitute one-third of the Moontower roster this year.)
I could go on and on, but you get the message. Start poring over the schedule now. You'll need all four weeks until the start of the festival to figure out what and what not to get tickled by.
By the by, badges are still available; the FAN Badge is a 4-day pass that provides access to shows at every venue, space permitting. Individual tickets are also available for shows at the Paramount, or see four headliners with an ACE badge. The third annual Moontower Comedy & Oddity Festival runs April 23-26 at various venues in Austin. For more information and a full schedule, visit www.moontowercomedyfestival.com.
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