Published October 01. 2013 6:26PM
After attending more than a half dozen comedy shows in the last few years, there are two rules that I always abide by: Rule #1: Never sit in the front row (table). No matter how good the seats are, just don’t do it. You’re asking for trouble.
Rule #2: If you’re going to make a comment, use your inside voice. Don’t let the onstage personality get a whiff of your witty personality. Why? See Rule #1.
Despite these rules, which I figured every audience member must be familiar with, there are always one or two brave souls who want to tempt fate. But that’s okay with me. It just makes for a much more interesting evening when members of the audience become part of the act.
Along with night clubs and concert venues, southeastern Connecticut is home to an assortment of comedy clubs that feature up-and-coming and nationally known comedic talent. What follows is an abbreviated list of comedy clubs within a one-hour drive from the shoreline.
City Steam Brew Ha Ha Comedy Club
Where: 942 Main Street, Hartford
Get There: Take 84 East to Exit 50 (Main St). Take right at second set of lights onto Main Street. Go through one light and club is 100 yards on the left, next door to the Marriot Residence Inn.
Tix: $17. Tickets can be purchased online at citysteam.biz
Eats: Appetizers, soups and salads, omelets, burgers, pizza, dessert, beer and cocktails; $4-$23.
What Else: Three shows each weekend. All shows are 21 and older. Parking is free on the street after 6 p.m. Monday to Friday, and is free all day Saturday and Sunday. The most reasonably priced garage parking is on Morgan Street, directly behind City Steam. There is also metered parking on all streets and a parking lot right across the street from City Steam.
Comix At Foxwoods Comedy Club & Bar
Where: 350 Trolley Line Blvd., Mashantucket
Get There: 95 North to Exit 92. Turn left onto Route 2 West for eight miles. Take the Foxwoods Boulevard Exit.
Tix: $15-$65. Tickets can be purchased online, by phone or at the box office.
Eats: Boneless wings, teriyaki chicken sticks to steak and cheese spring rolls, two full-service bars; $6-$15. Food and drink specials from 5 to 7 p.m.
What Else: Mature audiences only for shows. Two-drink minimum applies at some shows.
Beginning in August and wrapping on Nov. 3, aspiring comics from New England compete in four rounds and are judged on stage presence, crowd reaction and originality. The winner of Season 3 of “Last Comix Standing” receives $800 and a guaranteed paid weekend of work at Comix.
Where: 39 Warren Ave., East Providence, RI
Get There: 95 North to 195 East; Exit 5 off of 195 East
Right off the Exit; Club is immediately on your left
Tix: Up to $25. Tickets can be purchased online, by phone or at the box office.
Eats: Appetizers, pizza, wraps and dessert; $5-$12.
What Else: The club hosts about a dozen shows a month, from PG to hard-core comedy.
Parking is free. All shows are 18 and older.
Funny Bone Comedy Club & Restaurant
Where: 194 Buckland Hills Drive, Manchester
Get There: Route 2W to Exit 2E to I-84 East. Exit 62 off of I-84.
Follow signs to Buckland Hills Mall.
Tix: $15-$25. Tickets can be purchased online, by phone or at the box office.
Eats: Appetizers, sandwiches and salads, entrees, desserts and full-service bar; $6-$22.
What Else: Customers can register online to win show tickets. All shows are 21 and older.
A 15 percent gratuity is added to all showroom checks. Make reservations and wear your Funny Bone T-Shirt on Thursdays to gain free admission for the life of the shirt, excluding Special Engagement Shows.
Hole in the Wall Theater
Where: 116 Main St., New Britain
Get There: Take 95 South to Route 9 North. Take Exit 26 off of Route 9. Take right on Columbus Boulevard, left on Chestnut Street and right onto Main Street.
What Else: Hosts the CT Comedy Cage Match series and other shows for up-and-coming local comedians. Also theater productions.
Hu Ke Lau
Where: 705 Memorial Drive, Chicopee, Mass.
Get There: Route 33 North, off of Mass Pike Interstate-90, to Exit 5.
Tix: Up to $25, in addition to $5 service charge per ticket.
Eats: Appetizers, soups and salads, entrees, dessert, full-service bar; $3-$20. There is a $10 minimum per person.
What Else: Typically two shows per evening; shared seating on parties of six or less. Free parking.
Joker’s Wild Comedy Club
Where: 232 Wooster St., New Haven
Get There: Take 95 South to Exit 47. Take Exit 1 to downtown New Haven. Left on Olive Street and right on Wooster Street.
Tix: $18. Tickets can be purchased online or by phone.
What Else: Typically three shows every weekend. Open mic night every Wednesday. Two-drink minimum at all shows.