Upon walking in The Laughing Devil Comedy Club you’re greeted by a bar with a row of 14 taps ready to pour you a pint of your favorite import, craft or classic draft beer. I love beer, so yeah…great start! Oh, food…get the chicken tenders and tots. I love tots, too — but enough about me. You’re then whisked away by one of the staff behind a heavy black curtain to reveal an intimate setting. The light is low, ok…it’s dark. A bare brick wall decorated with framed albums of comedy’s greats — Carlin, Pryor, Bruce, Cosby, Dillar…you get the picture. The stage is small, nowhere to run for the comic. Seating is up close and personal to the stage, nowhere for the audience to hide from the comic. We’re in this together, and away we go!
Located on Vernon Blvd in the LIC section of Queens, The Laughing Devil Comedy Club has been around for about a year and a half and is part of the area’s reinvention from a rough and tumble, industrial area to an “I want to live THERE” area. The Laughing Devil Comedy Festival is in its 2nd year and is the work of Marshall Chiles and Steve Hofstetter. By the way, these guys also run the joint. You know, as in they own the club. The festival, which this year runs from May 14th – May 19th, is now in its 2nd year of providing a venue for comics from around the country to showcase their skills in the Capital of The World! Quarter-Finals begin on the 16th, so run out and get your tickets to the shows and get your laugh on, NYC! If Tuesday’s First-Round was an indication of what’s to come, we’re all in for a hilarious time! Click this link for the festival’s schedule, and keep posted with their latest via Twitter and Facebook. As Chris Rock said, “Comedy is a group activity, a verbal orgy”, so tell your friends, and laugh it up!
As I’m leaving the show, Steve pulls me to the side and says, “Its New York’s best kept secret. So tell everyone.” Fuggedaboutit, I’m all over it. UYC readers, you’re now in on the joke.
By: Orlando Manuel