Want to laugh for four days straight at 11 shows featuring 70 comedians? You’ve come to the right place, people. The Cream City Comedy Festival starts tonight (Thursday) and ends Sunday night. It stretches across several different Milwaukee neighborhoods and it’s totally free. Read on!
Kicking off tonight and going until Sunday night, the Cream City Comedy Festival will feature local (and some national) comedic talents over several venues in Milwaukee. And guess what else? It’s totally free to attend! Started by co-founders Liz Ziner, Phil Davidson and Sammy Arechar, this comedy festival will showcase the massive comedy scene in Milwaukee.
“Milwaukee, in my opinion, has always been considered a ‘comedy town.’ We want to let people know that there are very unique voices polishing their work at open mic and stretching their legs at showcase outside of established clubs and comedy venues in the city.”
Arechar and the other co-founders invited a bunch of independent showcases to be a part of the festival. They let them decide who they wanted in their shows in order for them to preserve their distinct voice or theme. These local comedians will perform in venues in Bay View, Walker’s Point, Brady Street and Riverwest. There are a couple benefits to having a festival take place in a bunch of areas.
“One of the biggest benefits of this festival would be for people who might not be familiar with the entire city, to explore each neighborhood we are hosting our events. Also, to get people out of their houses, into local businesses and laughing with their neighbors builds a sense of community.”
Not only does it unite communities in Milwaukee, but it helps to further build on the city’s growing comedy scene.
“The multi-venued approach is to also put a spotlight on the already established stand-up showcases in their original venues. We hope with this festival that we can help these independent shows establish a re-occuring audience,” said Arechar.
As for the $0 entry fee, Arechar and the other co-founders wanted to make the festival as accessible as possible. Since a lot of independent comedy shows in Milwaukee are already free, they didn’t want to tarnish any of the showcases’ themes. It was also a “thank you” to the festival’s sponsors.
“We like the idea of keeping it free and it is thanks to the support of our sponsors that we are able to do so. With their support and the support of future sponsors, we hope to be able to grow the scale of the festival while keeping it free to the public,” said Arechar.
The shows are free but donations will be collected at each venue to benefit the National Alliance on Mental Illness, Nami-Wisconsin.
Below are the shows, their times and venues.
Thursday, May 12
Yeah Buddy Awesome Time: Festival Kickoff at Club Garibaldi (8 p.m.)
Friday, May 13
Blipsters at Karma Bar & Grill (7:30 p.m.)
Hot Room at Angelo’s Piano Bar (9 p.m)
Boy Kisses at Hybrid Lounge (10:30 p.m)
Saturday, May 14
Bad Comedy Theatre at Hybrid Lounge (3 p.m.)
Subjective at Var Gallery & Studios (6 p.m.)
ClamJam at The Jazz Gallery (8 p.m.)
The 3rd Annual Zucchini Party at Company Brewing (10 p.m.)
Sunday, May 15
Sorry Not Sorry at Riverwest Public House (2 p.m.)
Super Talent Show at Cactus Club (4 p.m.)
Closing Ceremony at Club Garibaldi (8 p.m.)