Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Special Event: Hamell on Trial, February 2nd at Club Cafe

Hamell On Trial, award-winning one-man punk show and Righteous Babe Records recording artist,
returns to Pittsburgh - 
WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 2nd, 2011, 7PM at Club Cafe

Part Lou Reed, part Bill
Hicks and part Hunter S. Thompson, Hamell’s music/comedy/spoken word shows have been winning over audiences internationally and have earned him several Edinburgh Fringe Festival awards, a documentary about his life’s work to be released next year, as well as a dedicated and loyal fan base including Henry Rollins and Ani Difranco.

Pittsburgh Comedy's good friend, RON PLACONE, will be opening the show! Check out Ron Placone's WEBSITE for more musings.

Here is a Teaser Trailer for the Hamell On Trial Documentary that is currently being filmed and produced by Atlanta, Ga based Creative Outlet Productions.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Comedy Coat Drive at Peter's Pub, January 28th

This event is a coat drive for the homeless people around Pittsburgh. I'm sure that you have at least one winter coat laying around that you could donate to someone less fortunate. (We are asking for Mens, Womens, and Childrens coats.)
If you do not have an old coat to donate there is a $5 cover charge at the door.

Performances By:
Andrew Rutherford
Chris Kemp
Danny Palumbo
Glenn Baroni
Brian Ornduff
Dan Jenniches
Jason Russ
Peter's Pub @ 8:00pm
116 Oakland Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213
(412) 681-7465

Discover a great degree at online accounting courses

Friday, January 21, 2011

PITTSBURGH STATE OF MIND (Parody of 'NY State of Mind' BY Alicia Keys & Jay-Z)

Conceived, written, and performed by Michael E. Moats
Co-written and performed by Addi Twigg (of "Steeler Ladies" and "Steel Defense")
Recording, production, and video by Sean G. Donaldson (also of "Steeler Ladies" and "Steel Defense")

Addi Twigg & Sean G. Donaldson make up the group - BAIT & SWITCH - they brew a special blend of magical pop comedy that’s sure to hook you from the very start -- without keeping you up at night or giving you the shakes.
B&S performs in a wide variety of venues where we feel it is our duty to make blind dates bearable again. No ditty is sacred, no ballad beyond our reach. With decades of pop music at our fingertips, we’re bound to distort one or two of your favorites! Check out their site!

Michael E. Moats was the Founder and Artistic Director of Penn Avenue Theatre from 1998 to 2002.  He acted in several audience interactive comedies including; Tony 'N Tina's Wedding, Grandma Sylvia's Funeral, and Class Reunion.  He has been a member of many Improvisational Comedy Troupes, including; The Susquehanna Hat Company, The High Street Players, Mission 50, The Italian Sausages Commedia Dell'arte Troupe and The IC Light Improv Comedy All-Stars.  Some of Michael's favorite stage appearances include; Aldo in Italian American Reconciliation, Bernie Litko in Sexual Perversity in Chicago, Mike in The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), and Danny in Danny and the Deep Blue Sea. He is also the producer/creator of Arrivederci, Al: Dinner with the Godfather.
Louis C.K. is a fairly busy guy. Over the past year or so, this
consistently funny observationalist has been starring and directing
his own FX sitcom, Louie, checking in for an extended stay in the
second season of Parks and Recreation, and touring with a whole new
set of material. It's a good time to be a fan.

His latest stand-up tour has culminated in Hilarious, an 84-minute
concert film directed and edited by Louis. The film's title is no

Hilarious, like C.K.'s sitcom, abides by a raw, stripped-down
presentation. The comedian, wearing his black shirt and jeans, marches
around the dark stage, playing to a loving (often shocked) audience.
You hardly see the crowd, and C.K. isn't concerned with showing
guffaw-shots of happy couples. Nor is he overly worried about showing
the grand stage on which he's standing. It's not a very pretty film,
nor is it especially well shot or edited. It's basic and it works.

I get the sense that C.K. is proud of his minimalist aesthetic. The
film is all about his words, stage presence, and punctuating facial
expressions. He's not one of those comedians who is constantly running
around, or even pacing, to keep the audience involved; he's a gruff,
curmugeony guy with a deceptively positive message: we should be
happier. His set is broken up into three major topics: love, modern
life, and parenting. As a divorced 40-something, C.K. is adrift in a
world of bachelorhood. He's a guy who is still amazed by technology,
and confused about why we hate the greatness we have. He's a dad who
clearly loves his children, even as he struggles to raise them.


---Mike Rubino is a Pittsburgh-area writer, improviser, and actor who
performs with the Cellar Dwellers comedy troupe.

Upcoming Shows:
FN'Improv with the Cellar Dwellers
Short-form improv every Friday with one of the area's longest running
improv troupes.
Third Floor of the Beaver Valley Bowl, Rochester PA
Friday, Jan 21 @ 10pm. $3, all ages

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Dr. Pepper Sales Plummet after Latest Ad by TRAVIS WALLING

Fake News: Business

After a recent string of successes, Dr. Pepper’s latest “Trust me, I’m a doctor” ad has proven to be one of the biggest losers in the history of advertising. “I’m not sure what happened exactly,” opined Sr. VP of Marketing for the Dr. Pepper-Snapple Group James R. Treblicock, “we had so much success using people who aren’t real doctors, like Dr. Dre and Gene ‘Dr. Love’ Simmons, we only felt that the natural progression was to get a real medical doctor to do an ad for us. Unfortunately, with this being America we didn’t have a long list of doctors that anyone’s ever heard of. Heck more people think Jonas Salk is in a crappy band with his siblings than think he’s the inventor of the polio vaccine. So we went with the most famous medical doctor we could think of: Dr. Kevorkian”

The ad starts out innocently enough, with the elderly Dr. Kevorkian looking at a chart, he then looks at the camera and says “I’ve long been known as a man of strong convictions, both in my beliefs and against me legally. I feel that one should have the right to choose what’s best for them; be it having a doctor assist them in ending their life during a long painful illness, or deciding what the most refreshing drink is for when it’s kind of hot.” As he’s saying his lines he walks to an elderly man in a chair with three IVs going into his arm “Well, as you know Dr. Pepper has the great flavor that can be enjoyed by anyone at anytime” as the doctor is saying those lines he flips a switch on the machine going into the man’s arm and the man slowly passes out with his head slumped on his shoulder. “And I do mean anytime” the doctor says as he pours some Dr. Pepper into one of the IVs and the elderly, passed out man smiles slowly as a long steady “beeeeeeeeep” sound is heard. The ad ends with the doctor saying the ever present tag-line “Trust me, I’m a doctor”.

When asked to comment on the commercial social critic Phil Mushnick said “This is the most offensive commercial since Midas’s commercial with the drag queens advertising ‘Tranny Work Done Right’”.

TRAVIS WALLING is a comedian from Pittsburgh; check out more of his writings at his website.

Monday, January 17, 2011

The Turkey Sandwich by JEFF KONKLE

Have you ever thought something that makes you realize that you’re stupid?  I usually like to think I’m a smart guy.  I’m not good at Math or Science, or grammar, or remembering historical dates, or saying the alphabet, or coloring inside lines, or anything else remotely academic but still I like to think that I’m smart.  Unfortunately I came to the realization the other day that I am not smart and in fact, I’m probably a closet moron.
I was eating a turkey sandwich on my couch.  For some reason my nose started running.  It was one of those urgent nose runs, like your mucus just came off of the jet way at an airport terminal.  There was a large potential for this to be a messy situation. However, I didn’t want to get off of the couch.  I was comfortable.  I had a snuggie draped over my unshowered body (Don’t judge.  I was on vacation ), my one hand was tucked into the waistband of my sweatpants.  My butt was wedged perfectly in the cushions.  Standing up and getting a Kleenex was out of the question.
I looked around desperately to decide what to wipe my nose with.  There was the couch.  I could smear my face on the armrest or the seat.  No, I’m not entirely sure how to wash couch cushions but I’m sure it’s time intensive.  I could take off my sock, but my feet were nice and toasty.  Then I saw my turkey sandwich and my mind went into a flurry of intensely idiotic calculations.  Bread is absorbent.  I’ve seen it suck up French onion soup before.  Bread is soft.  It would be gentle on my nostrils.  And Bread is cheap.  At 2.19 a loaf I figured that’s about a dime a slice.  I could easily dispose of the top slice of bread and replace it with a new one with little monetary impact.   Calculation complete.
Without hesitating, I picked up the top slice of bread from my turkey sandwich and began to raise it to my moist nostrils.  Thankfully some lone shred of human intelligence in my dead brain raised it’s voice and said to me, “Hey!  Sandwiches are for eating, not for nose wiping.”
How I’ve functioned up until this point is amazing to me.


Jeff Konkle is a stand-up comedian who can currently be seen featuring at the Improv Waterfront, he has opened for national headliners like - Aries Spears (Mad TV), Bill Burr (HBO, Comedy Central Presents), Josh Blue, Kevin Brennan, Juston McKinney and Pauley Shore.

Friday, January 14, 2011

John Boehner: Quaaludes to Blame for Half-hearted Speech by RON PLACONE

Several members of John Boehner's staff have come forward to apologize for Boehner's half-hearted and insensitive response to the Arizona shootings:
"We've been getting alot of complaints, and, I mean, I guess it's fair. Here's a guy that has difficulty controlling his emotions at any given time and here in a case of extreme tragedy he gives a speech and you'd think he was talking about a possum that got run over."

According to the staff citizens have complained there was "no tone of sadness in his voice," he was "too stoic and matter-of-fact" in his delivery and he found it necessary to instruct everyone to behave a certain way since "today is the Sabbath." He gave said speech on Sunday. Gabrielle Giffords is Jewish.
"We did get some fan-mail over that one actually, mainly from Tea Party members and the religious right, Glenn Beck sent an autographed copy of one of his books, which was actually perfect timing because it's freezing in Ohio right now and we needed something to keep the fire going."
However, according to the staff the "lame" speech was no fault of Boehner's, as he has in fact been on a heavy dose of Quaaludes and has undergone several experimental surgeries to keep his tear ducts at bay. One staff member, who has requested to remain anonymous, said that the treatments given to Boehner were his suggestions.
"After he cried, I was like, 'come on man, we're Republicans. This isn't some hippie-liberal-douche-crap.' I told him he needed to toughen up. I mean look at the size of his gavel, he’s compensating for something, that’s for sure."
At first, Boehner and staff tried to fix his "issues" without the help of prescription drugs.
"We made him watch Bambi, like, 50 times, but after each time we'd give him some venison jerky. I'd be like, 'see, isn't this awesome, Bambi's a tasty treat, don't you think Bambi would want to be a tasty treat?' He'd keep crying on and on about Bambi's mom, he'd spit out the jerky, and we'd have to give him another time-out. 50 times man, 50 times."
After the Bambi experiment failed other movies were tried.

"We did Forrest Gump for a bit, that didn't work either, he cried every single time with that one. He wasn't crying because of Forrest or Jenny or anything, he was crying for Nixon. He hated the whole Watergate thing, he could never hold it in for that. 'Poor Nixon!' he'd shout."
Senator Rand Paul (R-KY) confirms Boehner's need to "toughen up."
"We went out one night, and man, this guy couldn't hold his stuff. After one shot he was a mess. I told him, I was like, 'look man, you need to toughen up or I'm going to do to you what we did to that bitch on the swim team at Baylor.' Man, those were the days, college...what we're we talking about? Oh yeah, Boehner, I was all like, 'look man, stop being such a pansy.'"

Boehner, who has repeatedly ignored our attempts to contact him in regards to this matter, under went the surgery and was prescribed Quaaludes the day after his over-night binge drinking with Rand Paul. Boehner apparently woke up soaked in his own vomit and urine with a drawn male organ across his face. Though nothing has been confirmed, sources say Rand Paul was the artist behind the penis.
"It was ridiculous, I mean, he had to make a speech that day, and he came in, hung-over and with a huge c#$k on his face. I mean didn't this guy have a childhood?"

Some questions will always be better off rhetorical...

--- Ron is a comedian and writer that has returned to Pittsburgh after blowing-up comedy in Seattle, WA.

Check out his website at

I Stole WheezyWaiter's Thing - DUSTIN DOWLING

--- from Dustin Dowling, Pittsburgh Comedian/Filmmaker/Vlogger

Check out Dustin's VLOG on YouTube!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The Kristen and Amie Show featuring Irony City, JANUARY 15th

Veteran Philadelphia improvisers Amie Roe and Kristen Schier are heading to Pittsburgh to perform on one night only. They take a single audience suggestion and let their imaginations take over. The kind of improv that only best friends can do together! A playful
undeniably girlish romp delivered by two of the most attractive women Philadelphia has to offer. 

Amie Roe has studied improv comedy at the Philly Improv Theater (PHIT), the Upright Citizens Brigade Theater (NYC), the Magnet Theater  (NYC), and at various improv festivals throughout the United States. Kristen Schier is the Artistic Director of The Philly N Crowd, which performs weekly shows at The Actor's Center. Before coming to PHIT she taught improv for Delaware Theater Company, Drexel University, and The Actor's Center.

Saturday, January 15 :: 9pm (note the change in time)
ModernFormations Gallery (Garfield)
4919 Penn Avenue
$6 in advance, $8 at the door
Tickets at:

Amie and Kristen will also be teaching a workshop earlier that day:

Basic Instinct: a Killer Workshop on Emotionally-Grounded Improv
Saturday, January 15 :: 1-4 pm (note the change in time)
ModernFormations Gallery
$30 if purchased before Jan 8, $40 after
Sign up at:

Visit their website too:

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Comedy Advice You Can Use by JEFF KONKLE

I think that the best advice is specific advice. 

I was at the FunnyBone with two of my friends.  One of us had won free tickets to a show somehow.  I had only thought about doing comedy at this point so I was ready to take some mental notes.  I don’t remember the names of any of the comedians on the show that night, although I do remember laughing a lot.  The feature comedian especially impressed me.  He said he had quit a six-figure job in the computer industry in order to pursue stand up.  It takes a lot of guts to walk away from that just so you can follow your dream.  Either that, or he got fired from that great job, divorced his wife because of it and stand-up was the only other option.

I had to go to the bathroom halfway through the headliner’s set.  As I exited the main room, I saw the feature comic in the lobby.  He was setting up his “merch,” a big source of a road comedian’s income.
“Great job,” I said to him as I walked toward the bathroom.

“Thanks,” he replied.

“I’m actually thinking about doing stand-up for the first time next week at an open mic,” I proclaimed.  “Do you have any advice for someone just starting out?”

“Yeah.  When you get on stage, take the mic out of the stand and then move the mic stand to the side of the stage.”

There was a pause.

“And?” I asked.

“No that’s the advice.  It just makes you look like a real amateur if you don’t do that.”  Another long pause.  “Did you want to buy a CD or a T-shirt?”

“No thanks,” and I headed on to the men’s room.

It seemed bewildering at the time, but that was great advice.  It was something I could use.  I don’t know how many times I’ve got crappy, vague advice like, “Just write everyday.”  Or “You need to find your voice.”  That doesn’t help me at all. 

So my first time on stage, I moved the mic stand to the side.  I noticed later that pretty much every working comedian does that.  It makes you look like a pro. 

Thanks to the unnamed comic I saw at the FunnyBone back in 2006.  Your advice has been heeded.


Jeff Konkle is a stand-up comedian who can currently be seen featuring at the Improv Waterfront, he has opened for national headliners like - Aries Spears (Mad TV), Bill Burr (HBO, Comedy Central Presents), Josh Blue, Kevin Brennan, Juston McKinney and Pauley Shore.

Monday, January 3, 2011

Fake News: Local Miser Taken to Insane Asylum by TRAVIS WALLING

Fake News: 1843

Local business owner Ebenezer Scrooge was taken to an eastern London insane asylum on the day after Christmas. This unexpected incarceration was coordinated by Scrooge’s family, workers, and various townspeople. They were noticing extreme changes in behavior and bizarre ranting by the town’s wealthiest moneylender. “We’re not sure what caused it exactly,” said Scrooge’s nephew Fred, “but I’d become used to him being a greedy, miserable bloke who hated me my whole life. Then out of the blue he shows up at my house on Christmas day wearing nothing but pajamas, exclaiming that he loved me because ghosts told him he should, and just generally acting like he was high on ecstasy.” When pressed on what exactly “ecstasy” was Fred responded “It’s a mixture of opium and horse manure; truly the 19th century’s greatest invention”

“Yeah, he threw open his window and started frantically asking me what day it was,” said a local nameless street urchin “before I answered I took a look around at all of the Christmas decorations that were up everywhere, the annual present opening going on in the town square, and the giant banner that was being hung across the street that said [Merry Christmas..... that’s today by the way] in giant letters. And all I could muster in response was ‘Uh, today? Why it’s Christmas day. What’re you stupid?’ I don’t think he caught the last part. Then he just started throwing money at me and ordering me to take food to people I’d never heard of. F’in nutjob man”

One of the main people responsible for Scrooge’s incarceration was Bob Cratchit, a clerk at Scrooge’s money-lending office. “I don’t really know where to begin. First he tells me that a ghost told him that my son Tim would die from his 'disease' if he (Scrooge) didn’t become a nicer guy. My son has a sprained ankle, he’ll be walking normally in 2 or 3 weeks, I’ve told Scrooge that many times. And I'm no doctor, but a stranger being nice to him probably wouldn't have cured his terminal disease anyway. Then he tells me that he’s giving me a raise and starts talking about making me a partner in his firm. While I wasn’t going to fight him about it I’ve been working there for about 5 weeks. My last job was as an assistant chimney sweep, I’m not exactly someone you want to be making important decisions or give a lot of power to. Then the craziest thing of all: he brought us a turkey. A turkey on Christmas! Who eats turkey on Christmas instead of ham or goose?! Turkey’s for Thanksgiving dammit! That’s completely insane and worthy of being committed to an asylum in my mind.”

Scrooge was taken to The Ravenscroft Mental Institution, where he will remain until he shows a vast improvement in his mental faculties. Officials at the institute are not confident of that however as Scrooge at various times claims that he thinks he’s a duck, a woman, or that he’s surrounded by little weird talking animals that’re wearing clothes. 

TRAVIS WALLING is a comedian from Pittsburgh; check out more of his writings at his website.