By Joe Vargo, Experience Columbus
Columbus is good for a laugh. All over town, our comedy scene is booming, with open mic nights, improv competitions, and comedy festivals. Different companies, troupes, and solo performers have been working hard to raise the profile of Columbus’ comedy scene over the years, and the pay-off is a wide range of performers available for local audiences.
One central figure in Columbus comedy is Shadowbox Live, which recently moved from Easton to the Brewery District. Their new space allows them to create more of their signature rock-and-roll and sketch comedy blend. The building also includes the Backstage Bistro, where you can enjoy breakfast, lunch, or drinks. Shadowbox head writer Jimmy Mak recently teamed with local comedian Justin Golak to create a twice-monthly series called Stand-Up @ Shadowbox. On alternating Tuesdays, you can catch local and regional stand-up comedians for the cheap price of only $5.
Recent festivals have helped establish the collaborations between different types of comedians. Madlab Theatre’s annual Comedy’Splosion is a two-night event featuring a stellar line-up of comedians. The newly-founded Gateway Comedy Festival, hosted at various venues around the South Campus Gateway, included a mix of music, improv, and stand-up comedy in one, giant free night. The event was sponsored by the Gateway Film Center, the Small Business Beanstalk, and Organ Grinder Productions, which produces a number of comedy events around town.
Throughout any given month, you can find various comedy nights all across Columbus. On the first Monday of every month, ColumbusIsFunny.com hosts Monday Night Live, an evening at Wild Goose Creative of sketch, stand-up, video, and music. Circus Bar often hosts the Comedy Sideshow, featuring Golak and other performers. The regular event Comedy Under the Influence can often be found at Zeno’s or The Tree Bar. And the Funny Bone out at Easton lets local improv teams compete in Improv Wars on Tuesdays.
If you want a sampling of Columbus’ comedy scene, visit Wild Goose Creative this weekend for the Columbus Comedy Festival. Now in its third year, the Festival aims to give audiences a cross section of Columbus’ live and video sketch comedy groups, stand-up comedians, and improv teams. The event is co-produced by Wild Goose and by ColumbusIsFunny.com, a website dedicated to listing and advocating for comedy around Columbus. For more information on the festival, visit ColumbusComedyFestival.com.
Columbus Comedy Festival 3
Thursday, April 26 – Saturday, April 28 at 8 p.m. each night
$10 at the door
Wild Goose Creative
2491 Summit St.