January 20, 2014
If you need a laugh, look no further than Richmond’s booming comedy scene. While you can catch the big names when they come through town, it’s hard to overlook all the hilarity right under the city’s surface. Richmond has some of the best in stand-up comedy and improvisation featuring performers who are likely to hit the big time.
Located in the Arts District of downtown Richmond, the Coalition Theater is home to the Richmond Comedy Coalition, one of the biggest and fastest growing troupes in the comedy scene. The Coalition Theater produces multiple improvisational comedy shows every week featuring a rotating cast of improvisers. The group also holds classes for aspiring comedians, or those who just want to learn what it’s all about.
In the far West End of the city, West End Comedy is a troupe of experienced and talented performers, who have trained and performed in various parts of the country, including New York City, Los Angeles, Raleigh, Miami and Orlando. West End Comedy is primarily short-form improvisation in the style of “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” and is geared towards all ages, as well as hosting separate shows for adults. The troupe hosts regular shows at HATTheatre. They also host special shows at Swift Creek Mill Theatre and Richmond CenterStage throughout the year.
The Midnight Suggestion is in its own words, the “most awkward comedy show in Richmond,” probably because of its location in the six foot-tall loft within Steady Sounds record store, or maybe it’s the gimmicks of host and MC Grandt Mutdge. High quality local and national talent perform in the intimate venue and headliners have made appearances on Comedy Central, MTV, NBC, TBS in late-night programmes and comedy specials.
The Richmond Funny Bone is a comedy club located in Richmond’s Short Pump Town Center that hosts some of the best stand-up comedians five nights a week. Comedians that have graced the Funny Bone’s stage include Rob Schneider and Bobcat Goldthwait, as well as countless other up-and-comers.
While ComedySportz is a national chain of comedy clubs, the ComedySportz located in Richmond’s West End hosts a fun, fast-paced comedy show that’s great for the whole family. ComedySportz is improvisational comedy played as a sport where two teams battle for laughs and points while a referee calls the fouls and the audience votes for the winners. ComedySportz Improv Theatre presents shows every Friday and Saturday night.
Header photo: Richmond Comedy Coalition © Patience Salgado
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Written by Andrew Cothern