The Austin Chronicle

Moontower Comedy 2020: Wave 3

By Robert Faires, February 7, 2020, 1:24pm, All Over Creation

Hang onto your boards, laugh surfers! Moontower Comedy Festival has suddenly sent a new wave of acts for 2020, and it's a big one – loaded with new headliners: Marlon Wayans, YouTube idol Chris Fleming, Jacqueline Novak, and returning festival faves Ronny Chieng, Maria Bamford, and Todd Barry.

This year's festival – set for April 22-25 and produced, as ever, by the Paramount Theatre with sponsor Cap City Comedy Club – already had a solid roster of headliners on tap for this year – Middleditch & Schwartz, Nikki Glaser, Andrew Schulz, Randy Feltface, Roy Wood Jr., and Dan Soder – but with this new crew, the wattage is getting a significant boost.

• Marlon Wayans stays busy with film and TV, as seen with his recent NBC sitcom Marlon and the new Netflix comedy Sextuplets, but as his Netflix special Woke-ish showed, he keeps his hand in the stand-up game;

• Jacqueline Novak went from improv (a troupe at Georgetown University including John Mulaney and Nick Kroll!) to stand-up, from which she developed the comic memoir How to Weep in Public: Feeble Offerings on Depression from One Who Knows and the solo show Get on Your Knees, which had a run Off Broadway that was extended repeatedly and is now touring across the country (it's what she'll perform at Moontower);

• Chris Fleming needs no introduction to fans of his YouTube channel, especially those who relish his signature character, alpha mom Gayle Waters-Waters, but the 2017 national tour of Showpig (which stopped in Austin at the North Door) was proof of Fleming's abundant stand-up chops, and fortunately for us, now he's back on the road;

• Ronny Chieng made a strong impression at Moontower 2019, so it's hardly surprising that he'd be booked again, but since that appearance, his Netflix special Asian Comedian Destroys America! has dropped, and it's making him even more in demand, on top of his senior correspondent gig on The Daily Show and Crazy Rich Asians;

• As for Todd Barry and Maria Bamford, it's best to direct you to their work at previous Moontower festivals; and

Last Podcast on the Left has also been inked for a headliner slot, so funny guys Ben Kissel, Marcus Parks, and Henry Zebrowski will be able to celebrate 10 years and 400 episodes (not to mention a new book, Last Book of the Left) of indulging their shared love of serial killers, monsters, aliens, conspiracies, and other weirdness on the Paramount stage with 1,300 fans.

These comedians will be joining dozens of others noted in our previous reports on Moontower 2020. Badges on all levels – Star, Nexus, Warrior, and Satellite – are available for purchase. For details, visit or call 512/474-1221.

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