Charleston Comedy Festival 2018 

Make America Laugh Again

click to enlarge Iliza Shlesinger is one of the headliners of this year's Fest

Provided

Iliza Shlesinger is one of the headliners of this year's Fest

Charleston Comedy Fest earns its driver's permit this year, y'all. You heard that right — CCF is 15 years old. Not to pat ourselves on the back or anything ... but damn is that an impressive streak! We here at City Paper have been partnering with the folks at Theatre 99 for a while now, and we've gotta say, we're pretty proud of the product we keep pumping out. Every year we bring you funny, real, and raw comedians, from our fair city and from cities across the country. And while we're tooting our own horn, we want to give a shout out to the kickass performers who bring their A-game to the CCF stages, and, most importantly, to the audiences, who come back for the laughs year after year. We couldn't do it without you Charleston. Now sit back and enjoy four days filled with raunchy sketch shows, brilliant improv, and two headliners who can't help but tell it like it is.

VIEW THE FULL COMEDY FEST 2018 SCHEDULE

Not Your Momma and Daddy work through your family issues for you
Not Your Momma and Daddy work through your family issues for you Parental Guidance

Your parents are probably to blame for a lot of what is wrong with you, but they also taught you to read and use a spoon. To paraphrase Hamlet, who had his own share of mommy issues, "Therein lies the rub." — Dustin Waters


Matt Horgan and Tim Stoltenberg may not live in the same time zone, but they're totally sympatico
Matt Horgan and Tim Stoltenberg may not live in the same time zone, but they're totally sympatico In Sync

Matt Horgan and Tim Stoltenberg have been working together on and off for more than 15 years. They first met while performing at Atlanta's Dad's Garage Theatre — Horgan still reps the ATL, while Stoltenberg keeps it funny in L.A. — Mary Scott Hardaway


Found Footage Festival showcases greatest hits and rediscovered gems
Found Footage Festival showcases greatest hits and rediscovered gems Lost and Found

Joe Pickett and Nick Prueher are hoarders. No, not the kind with caution tape around their house and feral cats mewwing for scraps of tuna casserole. I mean, probably not. But they're definitely hoarders of hilarity. They even have their own storage unit for the stuff. "We had a storage locker where our videos lived for 10 years," says Prueher. "Any time we had to find something, we'd have to go through it." — Mary Scott Hardaway


Nothing's off limits for Brooklyn-based improv duo Onesie
Nothing's off limits for Brooklyn-based improv duo Onesie Not so PC

From Jerry Seinfeld to Dave Chappelle, some of today's best funnymen have gotten their boxer-briefs all in a bunch about today's current comedy climate, a climate they believe has been hobbled by a new wave of political correctness. Charleston native and Brooklyn-based comedian Rachel McKay Steele is having none of that. — Chris Haire


The ladies of Reformed Whores sing songs we can all relate to
The ladies of Reformed Whores sing songs we can all relate to Music to our Ears

Comedy fest stalwarts Reformed Whores are back for another round of raunchy musical laughs. "We've been coming down to the Charleston Comedy Festival pretty much since we started the band," says ukulele player Marie Cecile Anderson. — Heath Ellison


Iliza Shlesinger commands respect, and belly laughs
Iliza Shlesinger commands respect, and belly laughs Cut the Bullshit

They say to write what you know. The closer you adhere to the truth (or, at least, your perception of the truth) the more compelling your narrative will be. It will draw in your audience and hold them for minutes, even hours. They won't be able to let your story go. — Mary Scott Hardaway


Colin Quinn has something difficult to tell us
Colin Quinn has something difficult to tell us America, We're on a Break

After spending the last few years in his native New York City, headlining a series of one-man shows both on-and-off- Broadway, comedian, actor, and author Colin Quinn is headed out on the road again. Not just to do stand-up, but to deliver a message to America that isn't going to be easy. Have a seat, everybody, Colin Quinn needs to tell you something about America. — Vincent Harris


Test your limits with Date Night: Getting to Know the Couple
Test your limits with Date Night: Getting to Know the Couple Push it Good

When the Norfolk, Va. comedy troupe The Pushers first came to Charleston Comedy Fest, they were best known for their boundary-pushing comedy. When they weren't cracking wise about swigging shots of Creme de Men — yes, it's what you think it is — they were riffing on the problem with Tiggers moving into the Hundred Acre Wood. They killed it, year in and year out. — Chris Haire


Two groups and one melting pot of funny hit Meeting Street this Saturday
Two groups and one melting pot of funny hit Meeting Street this Saturday Triple the Fun

Dan Hanf and Jessika Stocker, former Theatre 99 company members, are a couple who do comedy together. And believe it or not, it doesn't cause them any strife — calling from a chilly NYC apartment in early January the pair tell us that their show is a lot of "bits we came up with to make each other laugh." Cute, right? — Connelly Hardaway


OSFUG packs 25+ sketches into one hour of comedy
OSFUG packs 25+ sketches into one hour of comedy Oh fuck yeah

Let's get one thing out of the way: OSFUG is pronounced oh-ess-eff-you-gee. Got it? Good. The "fast fuckin' sketch show" heads to Charleston via NYC, where the group regularly performs at the Upright Citizen's Brigade Theatre. Comprised of Mark Vigeant, Sam Reece, Ian Stroud, Colin O'Brien, Becky Chicoine, and Michael Wolf, the show is as fast as it promises, pumping out between 25 and 32 sketches in just one hour. "Our philosophy is that sketch comedy is too slow," says Vigeant. "If you're watching SNL, for example, you know within 30 seconds if you don't like something, but you're in for six more minutes." — Connelly Hardaway


Dusty Slay looks back on his rowdy past and national exposure
Dusty Slay looks back on his rowdy past and national exposure Bringing It All Back Home

Dusty Slay likes to say that he was raised in Alabama, but became a man in Charleston. After two years touring on the road and fresh off a guest spot on Jimmy Kimmel Live!, the two-time winner of the Charleston Comedy Fest Stand-Up Competition finds himself back in the Holy City. And while Charleston has definitely changed since the comedian relocated to Nashville, Slay has gone through quite a bit of changes himself. — Dustin Waters


Greg Tavares and Lee Lewis prove improv ain't just for the weekend
Greg Tavares and Lee Lewis prove improv ain't just for the weekend Life Lessons

Theatre 99 co-owner and improv vet Greg Tavares has fostered some long-term creative relationships over the years. The first being, of course, Theatre 99 co-owner and, as Tavares describes her, "a fuckin monster on stage," Brandy Sullivan. Other than Sullivan, though, Tavares' most prolific partner in funny has been Lee Lewis, a pyschiatrist at MUSC — since 2004, the two have been taking the stage as improv duo Moral Fixation. — Mary Scott Hardaway


Doppelganger plays their greatest hits for the first time every time
Doppelganger plays their greatest hits for the first time every time The Song Remains Insane

Formed in 2006, the two-man comedy duo featuring Lee Lewis and Jason Cooper has a real-life history almost as lengthy as the washed-up musical acts they satirize. — Dustin Waters


Human Fireworks: A love story
Human Fireworks: A love story This ensemble brings together friends, and cements a marriage

"Human Fireworks, a love story," laughs HF ensemble member Betsy Harper. She isn't just cheesin for a chuckle — two members of HF, Andy Adkins and Ali Sylvester — actually met and fell in love while cuttin up on stage. "The Theatre obviously brought us together, and two members are married ... we definitely have a close knit group." — Mary Scott Hardaway


Meeting Street Maniacs roll deep with Theatre 99's supergroup
Meeting Street Maniacs roll deep with Theatre 99's supergroup Hometown Crowd

With a roster of more than 40 skilled improvisers, Theatre 99 co-founders Brandy Sullivan and Greg Tavares have assembled the comedic equivalent of the Avengers. Each member brings their own particular skills to the stage, and the revolving lineup keeps things fresh in a way that few other shows can. — Dustin Waters


Organized Chaos is one big happy family
Organized Chaos is one big happy family A Group Effort

What started out as a meandering group of Theatre 99 improv grads has since wittled down to a core group of six silly members. "We're very lucky we enjoy each other's company," says Craig Trow of Organized Chaos. "It's slowly gotten harder as time has gone on." With families and new babies in tow, plus day jobs — math teachers, web designers, and hair stylists are part of the mix — it isn't always easy to set up some practice time. — Mary Scott Hardaway


Mary Kay Has a Posse is like a fine wine — but less refined
Mary Kay Has a Posse is like a fine wine — but less refined Growing Together

Mary Kay Has a Posse (MKHP) knows itself — the performers have been taking the stage together for years. "We've all grown and changed as performers and as people — so that comes across in our scene work; at least I hope it does!" says ensemble member Jennifer Buddin. — Mary Scott Hardaway


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