Stand Up Live Comedy Theatre
50 W. Jefferson St., Phoenix,
As the newest addition to Phoenix’s comedy scene, Stand Up Live has a lot to prove. However, the new CityScape venue is showing it can attract solid comic acts with past performances from Saturday Night Live alum Tracy Morgan, Jackass’ Steve-O and Everybody Loves Raymond’s Brad Garrett. The venue also offers an impressive wine and dining menu, featuring fried cheese curds, burgers and pan-seared scallops. The good laughs and tasty cuisine are sure to make this newcomer a date-night favorite for couples seeking some chuckles, but the proximity to the light rail is reason enough to crack open some bubbly and get giggling.
Coming up: Greg Fitzsimmons, October 1 ($17)
7117 E. Third Ave., Scottsdale,
Having a laugh doesn’t have to be expensive, especially for ladies and college students who head here on Fridays and Saturdays for half-price admission. Bonus: You can fill up on the cheap with $3 chili cups and $4 pretzels with cheese sauce. If you haven’t had your fill of funny after that, the venue has an arsenal of for-hire comics waiting to make your next party a gas.
Coming up: David Koechner, October 7, 8, 9 ($25 in advance, $30 at the door)
The Torch Theatre
4721 N. Central Ave., Phoenix, 602-456-2876, thetorchtheatre.com
If you’re looking for a straight-up, no-holds-barred comedy showdown, check out The Torch’s Cagematch nights. Two improv acts compete for your laughs, and only one will be the last comic standing. Take the incumbent’s side for a safe bet or root for the newcomers for an oh-so-satisfying underdog win. If this UCB-in-AZ-style comedy is thrilling enough to convince you to try your hand at some jokes, The Torch offers eight-week comedy classes ($195) for any skill level to hone your ha-ha craft.
Coming up: Cagematch, October 15 ($10)
Stand Up! Scottsdale
6820 E. Fifth Ave., Scottsdale, 480-882-0730, standupscottsdale.com
Since the ’80s, Stand Up! has been known as a proving ground for homegrown comedy acts, such as David Spade. Not a lot has changed since then, and that’s a good thing, because comedy snobs know where to go to catch up-and-coming stars. Whether you choose the rough yet sometimes rewarding open-mic night or a featured act, there’s definitely enough to keep you laughing. Plus, with reasonably priced gourmet burgers and pulled pork sliders, you can take that smile all the way to the bank.
Coming up: Open Mic, October 19 (Free)
National Comedy Theatre
1111 S. Longmore, Mesa,
Not looking for competition in your comedy? That’s OK. National Comedy Theatre in Mesa takes its trained comedians and lets them loose on stage to do whatever goofy thing they can think of in a Whose Line Is It Anyway?-esque arena. This all-ages event is less gritty than other improv acts, so feel free to bring the kids for jokes the entire family can enjoy. Audience participation is encouraged, so be prepared with some silly scenarios and wacky themes for the improvisers to act out.
Coming up: Local Troupe Showcase, October 21 ($12)
5th Annual Reader Photo Contest
Avert your eyes! For our fifth annual reader photo contest, titled “Illumination,” you submitted your most blindingly beautiful images of fireworks, starlit desert flora, radiant neon and – of course – that trustiest of Sonora...
Downtown Phoenix Murals
The once-whitewashed walls of Phoenix are transforming into an open-air showcase for some of the Valley’s most dynamic artists. Forget graffiti – this is a mural revolution....
*Warning: This story contains harsh and profane language. The fearless founder of Phoenix-based pirate radio station KWFUCC goes global online while hijacking Valley airwaves. Last December, strange transmissions on the 87.9 FM frequency star...
ARTIST OF THE MONTH: “What's my favorite piece?” Lalo Cota repeats, settling in at Jobot coffeehouse in Downtown Phoenix. “The next one.” Less than a mile away, his most recent mural – depicting an iconic skeletal ...
Artist of the MonthThe buzz of chop saws mingles seamlessly with the aroma of welding gases inside a repurposed cotton mill at 13th and Jackson streets in Downtown Phoenix, and Greg Hankerson couldn’t be happier about it. ...