By Jami Smith
Originally published on Advocate.com October 24 2012 1:54 AM ET
Sure, funny is funny. You don’t have to go to a “gay” comedy show to experience a night of giggles, and clubs in every major city host a wide range of established comedians — including some who are LGBT.
But not every comedy club offers the LGBT community a chance to come together and laugh at ourselves without the risk of creeping sexism and homophobia, which are still too often passed off as entertainment.
Besides, going to a gay comedy show is a great alternative to the bar scene for meeting new people. Whether you are there for punch lines or pick-up lines, here are nine amazing shows at great venues, with a vetted lineup of comedians who are worth the ticket price.
Check out clips from the shows on the following pages and see if one is in your city,
Gays R Us – Hollywood, Calif.
First Wednesday of every month at the Hollywood Improv
Can’t get enough of Erin Foley? In addition to performing all over the country, she’s producer of this show. If you visit Los Angeles, you can see her perform every month alongside an impressive lineup of gay friendly comedians.
Come Out Laughing – Long Beach, Calif.
Last Wednesday of every month at the Long Beach Laugh Factory
For those who aren’t up for braving the traffic in Los Angeles, funny man Jason Dudey produces this show every month at the beautiful Long Beach Laugh Factory. This show also goes on tour occasionally in smaller cities that don’t offer as much LGBT-friendly entertainment.
HOMO COMICUS – Manhattan, N.Y
First Wednesday of every month at Gotham Comedy Club
Sure, there’s no lack of entertainment options in what is arguably the gay epicenter of America, but if you are looking for a tried and true night with LGBT comedy all stars, there’s no place like HOMO COMICUS. Produced and hosted by comedian Bob Montgomery, HOMO COMICUS is New York City’s longest running gay-friendly comedy show.
Gaylarious – Washington, D.C.
Next show is Thursday at 8:30pm. Tickets are available at Gaylarious Comedy
Produced and hosted by comedians Chris Doucette and Zach Toczynski, Gaylarious has been the best LGBT comedy show in Washington, D.C. since 2007. According to the wait staff, "We sell more booze in one night of Gaylarious than we do all weekend." Enough said.
Dykes of Hazard Variety Hour – Buffalo, N.Y.
Next show is December 20. Tickets are $10 and available at the door at Babeville.
Veteran comedian and producer Kristen Becker hosts this blend of comedy, music, dance and burlesque at the legendary Buffalo venue of Babeville, which is also home to Ani DiFranco’s Righteous Babe Records. In addition to its monthly hometown offering, the Dykes of Hazard show makes appearances on the road and is preparing a multi-city tour this spring.
Girl on Girl Comedy – Nashville, Tenn.
Next show is November 7. Tickets are available at Nashville Zanies.
If you find yourself in Music City, skip the line dancing and head straight to Zanies for a bawdy mix of stand-up comedy and burlesque. Don’t let the name fool you. Producer and comedian, Christy Eidson says that there’s something fun at Girl on Girl for everyone.
Fruit Punch – Sunnyvale, Calif.
Next show is November 1, and tickets are available at Rooster T Feathers.
Fruit Punch packs a wallop of laughs for Bay Area folks who don’t want to trek to the depths of San Francisco for LGBT entertainment. Ronn Vigh, a comedian and producer who also runs a popular comedy night in the heart of The Castro called, "Harvey's Funny Tuesdays,” is spreading the wealth by bringing gay-friendly comedy beyond the metropolitan hubs in California.
Bitch Salad – Toronto, Canada
Next show is December 11, and tickets are available at Buddies in Bad Times.
Nestled in the heart of Toronto’s historic gay district, this semi–annual show is hosted by sassy comedian and television personality, Andrew Johnston. His goal is to showcase the next generation of unapologetically smart and funny ladies in the vein of Kathy Griffin or Sarah Silverman (but Canadian, of course). Get yourself a heaping helping of Bitch Salad.
Queer Comedy – Chicago, Ill.
Next show is October 30, and tickets are available at Chicago Zanies.
In an effort to bring LGBT entertainment to a wider audience in Chicago, comedian Adam Guerino created a series called OutLoud Chicago, which presents comedy and storytelling events at various venues across the city. OutLoud Chicago’s most successful event is Queer Comedy Night at Zanies Comedy Club. For more information on LGBT comedy events in Chicago, follow OutLoud Chicago on Facebook.
TALK BACK: Do you know of a hilarious LGBT friendly comedy show in your area? Post a comment with your top picks.