December 9, 2010

Speak Easy Comedy Showcase Review!!

Drew Frees
James Fritz
John Ming
I wasn't sure quite what to expect when I decided to go to  the "Speak Easy" comedy showcase at Stanley's Kitchen & Tap.  I guess I figured since it was in the ritzy "Old Town" section of Chicago that the venue was going to be some snooty overrated, corporate TGIF clone that is ill suited for a true comedy show.  Well I was wrong. The place was great!  If your cool grandfather, the one that let you sneak beer out of the fridge in his basement den while he played poker with the boys, decorated a restaurant this would be it.  The staff was as  nice as pie.  I got there a little late, walked into what was clearly a dining room with nary a comedian in sight and stood around confused for few moments until the friendly host directed me to the basement where the show takes place.   Wow what a cool place for a comedy show.  The decor is complete kitsch but it kinda works.  Despite my misgiving the setup was professional all the way, a stage, lights, a waitress, a cool ass bartender lady, and a full restaurant with what looked like amazing food, whats not to like?  And the comedy?  Forget about it.  Pure class.  Adam Burke, John Ming, Drew Frees, James Fritz as headliner and Kenny DeForest hosting his ass off.  John Ming was on point, it was good to see him do longer material.  Drew Frees had me rolling with Jokes so funny I cant remember most of them except that one of his students (he teaches middle school) called him a "pinnocio looking motherfucker".  James fritz was on fire as usual, I especially like how after interacting with a woman in the front row he turned to her and said "I can tell your wounded inside, are you seeing anyone?"  Classic.  What I really liked about the showcase in general is that each comedian got about 15- 20 minutes with the headliner going almost a half hour.  The show was so good I really dont have that much to say about it other then I hope they keep it up.  Check it out, every Monday at night at Stanley's Kitchen and Tap 1970 Noth Lincoln Ave. Chicago.