Doc’s Lab, San Francisco, CA
Jeff Zamaria, Comedy Booker/Manager
The best and most important moment I witnessed in comedy this year was Matt Ruby closing out his show at Doc’s Lab on the day after the election. It was a night I won’t forget. November 9th was a hard day for a lot of people. Including myself and the 39 people in the room that night. It was the first day in such a long time, that I didn’t want to see comedy. I almost felt like cancelling the show. Fortunately, I had a great chat with Matt before, and the show went on. He did a great heading set without mentioning the elephant in the room. When he finally did for his closing few moments, he turned it completely honest, talked about the youth said somethings that have really stuck with me since...Everyone in the room that night witnessed something really special. Matt gave us a much needed dose of positivity, and to be honest, I’m still living off it today. Thanks, Matt.
And another shoutout...
Independent Producer, New York, NY and National
Luisa Diez, Producer
This year I was very lucky to be a part of many amazing comedy festivals across the country, to judge numerous stand-up competitions, and to meet a whole new wave of talented comics, both in New York and elsewhere. My favorite comedy moment of the year, though, was actually three shows: In 2016, for the first time, we produced not one but three Schtick or Treat shows. The show, usually an annual Halloween event in New York, was created (and is hosted) by Mark Normand and Matt Ruby, and features comics performing as their favorite comedy legends—living, dead, real, and fictional! This year, in addition to the 9th Annual Schtick in New York, we produced one for Seeso, and held one in Los Angeles, too. Each show featured approximately 40 acts (114 total!), and everything from perfect impressions to hilarious parodies, music, and dancing, to prop comedy, exploding fruit, and fake blood.
What is truly special about this show is that it has something for everyone. For one night, comics get to play outside of their comfort zones and do things that aren’t like their regular acts. They get to pay homage to their favorites (or even lovingly mock them a little!), and to show off skills outside of their usual act, like singing, acting, and the ability to write sketches or for a voice that is not their own. Industry gets a chance to see more performers than anyone thought one show could hold, and comedy fans get a glimpse into the world of comedians and into each city’s respective comedy communities. Obviously, there were too many individual performances to single anyone out here, but the great thing is anyone you ask will have a different favorite, and you can’t get around the ‘you had to be there feeling.’ It’s an intimate and wonderful show crafted by, and for, comedy lovers.
Thanks so much Jeff and Luisa. Truly honored by the kind words!