Spring’s best comedy shows in NYC

LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 10:  Comedian Eddie Izzard arrives at the 2012 MusiCares Person of the Year Tribute To Paul McCartney held at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 10, 2012 in Los Angeles, California.  (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)
LOS ANGELES, CA – FEBRUARY 10: Comedian Eddie Izzard arrives at the 2012 MusiCares Person of the Year Tribute To Paul McCartney held at the Los Angeles Convention Center on February 10, 2012 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Jason Merritt/Getty Images)

Eddie Izzard: ‘Force Majeure’
Called the “Lost Python” by John Cleese, Eddie Izzard has achieved superstardom in his own right with a sharp, often absurdist, stream-of-conscious style that takes audiences on wild flights of fancy. In mid-May, Izzard brings his world-traveling “Force Majeure” show to the Beacon Theatre for a five-night run. Covering everything from the English language and “The Lord of the Rings” to dressage and the Death Star canteen, Izzard absolutely lives up to his moniker as “the greatest British stand-up comedian of his generation.”
May 13-15, 17-18
2124 Broadway
$50-90, 212-465-6500

NYC Improv Festival
Returning for its third year, the NYC Improv Festival brings more than 100 comedy groups from around the world to two stages at the Peoples Improv Theater from March 19 to March 23. Acts run the gamut of farce, from improvised musicals and Craigslist-inspired sketches to stream-of-consciousness journeys and political punditry. A festival pass gets you into everything, but expect lines out the door for the first come, first serve seating.
March 19-23
123 E. 24th St.
$10 per show, $60 festival pass (day one, all shows free)

The Upright Citizens Brigade Meets the Beatles
Before comedienne Amy Poehler hit the big time, she honed her talents in the Upright Citizens Brigade, a sketch and improv comedy group based in Chelsea. On April 3 at the New York Public Library for Performing Arts, the Upright Citizens take on the Beatles as part of the 50th anniversary celebrations of the band’s famous New York arrival. Alongside signature sketches, the group will perform an improv set inspired by the library’s exhibition “Ladies and Gentlemen…The Beatles!”
April 3
New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, 111 Amsterdam Ave.
Free (first come, first serve

Bill Cosby
Comedy legend Bill Cosby rides a new surge of appreciation to the sumptuous baroque St. George Theatre in Staten Island on May 16. With more than 50 years of stand-up experience under his belt, “The Coz” continues to spin yarns about family, marriage and childhood better than anyone. As his current show, “Far from Finished,” proves, he’s not ready to hang up the mic yet.
May 16
35 Hyatt Street, Staten Island
$45-$99, 718-442-2900,


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