Party at the Moontower: Lara’s 2018 Moontower Comedy Picks!

All images sourced from Moontower Comedy

It’s the most wonderful time of the year! That’s right, it’s what we at Comedy Wham refer to as “Comedy Christmas.” It’s the seventh Moontower Comedy Festival and if you haven’t gotten badges or tickets, I’m not sure what you’re waiting for! Or how we can even be friends?! Okay, enough dramatics, it’s time for me to do the grueling task of picking amongst some of the best comedy lineups in the country and deciding which ones I will see. Cue the violins, because with this schedule, you cannot make a bad choice.

For some silly reason I have never seen Tig Notaro, so as I’m typing this I’m already in line at the Paramount Theatre for her 7pm show. This begins my Thursday, April 21 schedule. Next up, I head to Antone’s for Major FOMO at 9:30pm with Ali Saddiq, Tom Rhodes, and Mike MacRae, just to name a few. Always a great way to close a Moontower night, I will stay parked at Antone’s for the 11:30 return of Josh Adam Meyers’ Goddamn Comedy Jam. If you’ve never experienced the Comedy Jam, comedians do a set, tie it into song, and then perform said song with a live band! You are guaranteed to lose your voice singing along.

The appropriate way to start the day, Friday kicks off with the aptly named You Up , the SiriusXM show with Nikki Glaser at Palm Door at 11am. I’m always intrigued by shows with an interesting concept, so it shouldn’t surprise you that I’m eager to see The Paramount Story Wranglers, featuring comedy legend Dom Irrera, Los Angeles’ Jeremiah Watkins, and Austin favorite Avery Moore performing sketches written by Austin elementary school students! Later that evening I will join the other campers in, what has become a tradition for me, gathering around The Bonfire, SiriusXM’s show hosted by Dan Soder and Big Jay Oakerson. They have scheduled guests, but with so many comedians converging on Austin, you never know who may drop in and say hello. It may be tight, but I’m going to try my luck at seeing World Champion Judah Friedlander at The Velv. Planning to close out my evening with Stars in Bars, the nightly showcase that dishes out major headliners in a more intimate setting than you would normally see them, and SHEBANG!, Moontower’s signature all-female showcase.

Another tradition I refuse to miss each year is the Ping Pong Slapdown, hosted by the Sklar Brothers. This daytime tournament pits brackets of comedians and fans against one another until a final victor emerges. However, fear not, losing is actually how you get interviewed by the Sklar Brothers. My afternoon now sends me over to Raised by TV with Jon Gabrus and Lauren Lapkus, to fulfill my nostalgia for the 80’s/90’s television I was also raised by.

Saturday night is where I am really struggling to choose, so I’m giving you a few of my options and if you see me there, you’ll know what I chose. In the 7:30pm spot I’m torn between Stand-up On the Spot, an improvised stand up show, at The Velv and Nikki Glaser at Cap City Comedy Club. Tied for my 9/9:30pm slot are Apres Le Deluge: The Buddy Cole Monologues, at Fallout Theater starring Scott Thompson of Kids in the Hall and Maria Bamford at Stateside Theatre.

Lastly, do I dare do one last night of Goddamn Comedy Jam at 11pm at Parish or spin the wheel and head to 800 Congress for Satellite Surprise at 11:15pm?  Satellite Surprise is a  show hosted by the Sklar Brothers featuring some of the best comics of the festival, but the lineup is kept secret, like a comedy grab-bag of awesomeness. Whatever I choose, I know I will have an unforgettable time and whatever you choose, so will you! Party at the Moontower…see ya there!!!

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Lara Smith

Comedy Wham