Moontower 5: First Wave of Comics Announced

Martin Short and Kevin Smith lead the laugh makers for 2016

Martin Short at PaleyFest Fall TV Previews 2014 for the TV show Mulaney
Martin Short at PaleyFest Fall TV Previews 2014 for the TV show Mulaney (Photo by Dominick D)

The Paramount Theatre is wasting no time in building the anticipation for its fifth Moontower Comedy & Oddity Festival. Rather than wait until January to announce the first wave of comics, the theatre has made a pre-Thanksgiving drop of 28 comedians lined up for 2016, and topping the list are Martin Short and Kevin Smith.

Yes, the SCTV/SNL alumnus, star of stage and screen, and author of I Must Say: My Life as a Humble Comedy Legend will be joining the Moontower party, as will the filmmaker responsible for Clerks, Chasing Amy, and Zack and Miri Make a Porno. Plans call for Smith to do a live taping of his Jay and Silent Bob Get Old podcast with Jason Mewes as a special badge-only event.

Among the more than two dozen other comedians and comedy acts confirmed for Moontower 5, taking place April 20-23, are several fest faves: perennial headliner Maria Bamford; Jim Norton, co-host of Sirius XM's Opie with Jim Norton; the Sklar Brothers; Ron Funches of NBC’s Undateable Live; Andy Kindler; Beth Stelling; and James Adomian.

But Moontower doesn't simply lean on the same reliable laugh makers year after year. The team behind the festival has made a point of looking beyond the ranks of standard stand-up to comedy acts that will earn it that "… & Oddity" in its title. Contenders in 2016 look to be comedy lounge act The Lampshades, starring The Office's Kate Flannery and a porn-'stached Scott Robinson (Anchorman); MADtv alum Anjelah Johnson presenting her breakout character from that show in Bon Qui Qui’s Gold Plated Dreams Tour, based on the rap album she released this past January; English magician and America’s Got Talent finalist Piff the Magic Dragon, with his magic-performing Chihuahua Mr. Piffles; and Goddamn Comedy Jam, the event hosted by Josh Adam Meyers in which comics follow their stand-up sets by belting out covers of their favorite rock songs, karaoke-style, to live music played by house band Elemenopy.

Filling out the roster of scheduled comics are: new SNL cast member Jon Rudnitsky; Comedy Central Roast writer Jesse Joyce; the Peanut of XD Disney's Pickle and Peanut, Johnny Pemberton; Canadian comedy superstar Debra DiGiovanni; Ahmed Bharoocha; Joe DeRosa; Sean Donnelly; Jo Firestone; Matteo Lane; Annie Lederman; Joe List; Tony Rock; Brad Williams; and Jenny Zigrino.

Moontower badges are available now at a special early bird rate. To get the lowdown, call the Paramount box office at 512/474-1221 or visit

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Moontower Comedy & Oddity Festival, Moontower Comedy, Martin Short, Kevin Smith, Paramount Theatre, Maria Bamford, Sklar Brothers, Andy Kindler, James Adomian

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