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Park Slope Comedy Fest Will Gather 60 Comics For 7-Day Event: Organizers

By Caroline Spivack | September 19, 2017 5:46pm
 More than 60 comics, including organizer Christian Polanco, will ply locals with side splitting comedy for seven days as part of the Park Slope Comedy Festival.
More than 60 comics, including organizer Christian Polanco, will ply locals with side splitting comedy for seven days as part of the Park Slope Comedy Festival.
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Park Slope Comedy Festival

PARK SLOPE — Four Park Slope comedians have joined forces to spread their love of stand up with a seven-day festival that will bring more than 60 local and national comics to the neighborhood's stages.

The Park Slope Comedy Festival, slated for Oct. 9 to the 15, will use nearly a dozen venues with the goal of showcasing Park Slope's booming stand-up community, said one organizer.

"I've noticed there's a real appetite for comedy in Park Slope," said Bob Kitson, who regularly performs at The Montrose. "And this will really let residents of Park Slope know ... that you don't have to go to the clubs in Manhattan. You can see quality comics right in your backyard."

Seasoned stand-up performers and those just getting their legs will ply locals with side splitting comedy of all types in a dozen shows at spots including Freddy's Bar, Two Boots Pizza and Union Hall. 

Julio Torres, a writer for "Saturday Night Live;" Lucie Steiner, who has written for Jon Stewart; Jeena Bloom, a New York-based trans woman; and Katharyn Henson, a fortune teller hailing from Reno, are among the performers.

Comics will also go head to head in roast battles and the last comic standing who manages to burn competitors will be highlighted in a stand-up event at the end of the fest, said Kitson. 

"Rather than pigeon holing people we’re just kind of putting everybody together in a big mixing bowl," said Kitson, who used to manage famed comedy club Carolines on Broadway in Midtown. 

The fest got its start after Kitson and three fellow comedians who perform in the neighborhood — Glo Butler, Christian Polanco and Liz Hall — aimed to give comics of all levels a local platform to showcase and hone their craft.

"I hope that this helps people realize that comedy is like professional sports," said Kitson. "There's the pro teams — there's Chris Rock, Jerry Seinfeld, Amy Schumer — there's the AAA teams and then there's the people who are even farther down, in some cases they're paying to play baseball.”

Kitson hopes the lineup will help foster an appreciation for local comedy.

"People are going to have fun, they're gonna laugh and I hope maybe they'll say, 'Hey, I should look at some smaller comedy."

Organizers will post a full lineup of events on the festival's Facebook page in the coming days.