Over 200 comedians will perform in the NY Comedy Festival

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Friday, November 11, 2022
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The New York Comedy Festival returns with over 200 comedians performing at venues across all five boroughs and Long Island. Sandy Kenyon has the story.

NEW YORK CITY (WABC) -- It takes a person with a lot of contacts to pull together more than 200 comedians with over 100 shows in just one week across all five boroughs of New York City, but Caroline Hirsch is uniquely qualified to organize the New York Comedy Festival.

"There's such a diverse amount of talent for everyone," she told Entertainment Reporter Sandy Kenyon at Carolines, the comedy club she owns. "From Jo Koy at Mason Square Garden to Bill Maher at Hulu Theater, Wanda Sykes."

Actress and comedian Yamaneika Sauders is originally from Baltimore and has become a mainstay at Caroline's.

"It's such a big deal for me," Saunders said. "I came here as a 21-year-old girl many years ago excited about doing stand-up."

Today, Saunders stars in her own comedy specials and appears opposite Amy Schumer in the Hulu series, "Life & Beth," but she loves the excitement of a live audience.

"We experience more things in New York City that just keep us more open, right?" Saunders said. "I wouldn't be surprised if I saw somebody walking a dinosaur down the street in a mini-skirt so like when you have that kind of open audience that comes here like they're ready for anything."

Carolines has bounced back after the pandemic and the proprietor has adapted to the changes that followed.

"Listen, a lot happened in comedy during the pandemic," Hirsch said.

When people could no longer attend live comedy they turned to social media. That's where Internet stars like Nurse Blake came in with relatable videos on TikTok and Instagram.

WATCH | 'Ms. Pat' credits comedy for her survival

Now, the hospital nurse turned comic is headlining his own show on November 13th at Town Hall in Queens as part of the New York Comedy Festival.

"There's a little bit of everything for everybody that we present at The Festival," said Hirsch. "And of course New York, they're really the best crowds in the world, they really are."

ABC 7 is an official sponsor of the NYCF - which runs from Monday, November 7 through Sunday, November 13.

The annual Stand Up For Heroes event opened the New York Comedy Festival to raise money for our nation's veterans and their families.

The festival will take place in multiple venues throughout New York City and even one on Long Island. See the set lists and purchase tickets on the New York Comedy Festival website.

MORE NEWS: New MOMA exhibit recognizes JAM, a 1980s Black art gallery that contributed to the NYC art scene

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