Time Out Melbourne

Regular comedy nights in Melbourne

Catching tomorrow's big cheese of comedy in a cosy Melbourne bar or club is a splendid thing to do any night of the week.

Monday

Comedy@Spleen

Sandwiched into a minuscule 60 person capacity room and clocking in at the resounding price of free, one would forgive Comedy@Spleen for serving up a diet of entry level comics, desperate for their first stumbling stint on stage. However, nothing could be further from the truth, as week after week this place plays host to some of the best comics in Melbourne and beyond. A prime opportunity for well-known names to try new material (and lesser known ones to hone it) the quality is remarkably consistent and the atmosphere often electric. A more than worthwhile way to spend your Monday night if you're city side, although be warned: the place is packed every, single week, so be sure to get there at least 30 minutes early if you want a seat. Mon 8.30pm; free (gold coin donation appreciated).

Local Laughs

One of the grand old rooms of Melbourne comedy, Local Laughs remains to this day one of the most reliably entertaining comedy nights in the city. Situated in the relaxed surrounds of the Local Taphouse – who, notably, have one of the best selections of beer on tap in all of Melbourne – the room is curated by the esteemed Janet McLeod, who ensures that only the finest local and international acts make their way on to her stage. There’s an international aspect too: if there's someone touring who's worth putting on, chances are Janet will convince them to come down and do 15 minutes. A friendly, worthwhile and, above all, funny night. Mon 8.30pm; $12/$10.


Wednesday

Crab Lab


Nestled between the old Eurotrash and the Berlin Bar on Corrs Lane in Chinatown, Crab Lab rose from the ashes of Checkpoint Charlie Comedy and continues to showcase a host of local and interstate acts every week. Recent headliners have included the likes of Rhys Nicholson, Damien Power and Frank Woodley, with local luminaries Celia Pacquola, Luke McGregor and Danny McGinlay often dropping by with a surprise guest or two. Wed8.30pm; $5.

Death Star Canteen

This charming bar is a cozy way to spend a Wednesday night enjoying a comic, while sipping on a cocktail. You might see one of your comedy favourites, or you might see a young comic’s first attempt at performing their comedy. Either way, at $5, it’s a cheap and enjoyable midweek treat. Wed 8.30pm; $5.

Kodiak Comedy

The Kodiak Club had some pretty amateur uni students run eye-gouging comedy sessions a couple of years back. But fear not. This is a whole new room, run by Karl Woodberry every Wednesday from 8.30pm and it's the real deal. Held upstairs in Little Blood, it's an intimate space where established comedians come to test new material. The good news for you is that it's cheap ($5!), you can order hot wings from downstairs, and you get to see some great local talent like Celia Pacquola and Nick Cody going off script. Wed 8.30pm; $5.



LOL Comedy at Portland Hotel


Delivering laughs four nights of the week all around the city, LOL Comedy is Melbourne's premier hub of quality comics. Each week showcases a well-known MC and headliner with recent special guests including Dave Hughes, Claire Hooper, Randy and Mikey Robins. New comics need not apply, only the seasoned best take to the mic at LOL. Wed 8pm; $12/10

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Public Bar Comedy


Long gone are the days of $1 Geelong Bitter at The Public Bar, now each Wednesday sees a cracking lineup of local talent take to the back room in one of Melbourne's newest and most thriving rooms. Curated by Steele Saunders, Public Bar Comedy sees regular appearances from Luke McGregor, Adam Rozenbachs and Brendan Maloney, alongside headline slots from Justin Hamilton, Adam Richard, Randy, Dave Thornton and more. Wed 8.30pm; $5.

The Variety Collective

You never know what you’re going to get at The Variety Collective at The Brunswick Green. Alongside a wild night of comedy, you can also expect to see sword swallowers, jugglers and other oddballs come together to delight and amaze. Curated by lauded locals Michael Connell, Sarah Jones, Nicholas J Johnson, Elena Kirschbaum and Nick Kesidis, you can expect regular visits from the ilk of Lawrence Leung and Dave Callan amidst some of Melbourne's finest emerging comics. Wed 8pm; $10.


Thursday

The Big Hoo Haa

The Melbourne iteration of Perth's longest running and most successful improv comedy night, The Big Hoo Haa is improvised comedy at its absolute funniest: minimal pretension, maximum straight for the throat hilarity. Featuring a rotating cast of some of the finest improv comedians from Melbourne, Perth and elsewhere, the Big Hoo Haa is two hours of slightly manic, ramshackle entertainment that I have never seen have a bad night. A perfect way of getting into comedy if the whole 'single person on a stage telling jokes about how awful their life is' model of stand-up doesn't appeal. Thu 8pm; $14/$12.

Comedy at Exford


The Exford is a Melbourne comedy institution - and a notorious one at that. Renown for being one of the toughest rooms in Melbourne for a comic to conquer, don't be surprised to hear some of the harshest (and slurred) heckles in town. Hosting mainly unknown local names, if you think you're up for the slaughter, head along to the local comedy colosseum each Thursday and take aim, and hopefully be pleasantly surprised.
 Thu 8.30pm; free.

Commedia Dell Parte


Don't feel like venturing out of the south side? Having recently celebrated their second birthday Commedia Dell Parte has established itself as St Kilda's preeminent comedy room. Run by Sean Ryan, Anthony Jeannot and Marcus Newman, the room features some of Melbourne's finest emerging comics. It also runs on a 'pay as you like basis' - meaning, it's free entry and on your way out you're welcome to chip in whatever you feel the show was worth, with the takings being split between the performing comedians. 
Thu 8.30; pay as you like.

Five Boroughs Comedy


Formerly Softbelly Comedy, Five Boroughs is the second weekly room run by Karl Chandler alongside his legendary Comedy@Spleen, held above Pop Restaurant at 68 Hardware Lane in the city. Featuring international, national and local headliners, Five Boroughs has hosted some of the world's biggest names alongside Australian's most pre-eminent talent. Don't be surprised if Sarah Silverman, Alan Davies or Hannibal Buress drop by for a surprise set again - not to mention regular appearances from Dave Hughes, Adam Hills, Frank Woodley, Josh Thomas, Charlie Pickering and a whole lot more. Thu 8.30pm; $12.

LOL Comedy at the Provincial


Delivering laughs four nights of the week all around the city, LOL Comedy is Melbourne's premier hub of quality comics. Each week showcases a well-known MC and headliner with recent special guests including Dave Hughes, Claire Hooper, Randy and Mikey Robins. New comics need not apply, only the seasoned best take to the mic at LOL. Thu 8pm; $12/10

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Friday

Last Laugh Comedy Club

Running since 1975 and offering more in the way of a traditional stand-up experience, Last Laugh, housed inside The Athenaeum Theatre, harks back to the 1980s comedy clubs of the US, all table seating, low lighting and quality entertainment. As you might expect, then, the line-ups on offer skew heavily toward the established and the famous, meaning you're more likely to encounter a name you know. There's also fewer comics doing longer, 20-30 minute routines, so you really get to see what each comedian is made of. Fortunately, given that most of the comics performing have been doing it for at least a decade – and usually more – that's not such a risky proposition. An excellent, self-contained night out. Fri & Sat 8pm; $48/$52 with dinner, less without. Discounts often available.

LOL Comedy at Hawthorn Hotel


Delivering laughs four nights of the week all around the city, LOL Comedy is Melbourne's premier hub of quality comics. Each week showcases a well-known MC and headliner with recent special guests including Dave Hughes, Claire Hooper, Randy and Mikey Robins. New comics need not apply, only the seasoned best take to the mic at LOL. Fri 8pm; $12/10

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Saturday

Last Laugh Comedy Club

Running since 1975 and offering more in the way of a traditional stand-up experience, Last Laugh, housed inside The Athenaeum Theatre, harks back to the 1980s comedy clubs of the US, all table seating, low lighting and quality entertainment. As you might expect, then, the line-ups on offer skew heavily toward the established and the famous, meaning you're more likely to encounter a name you know. There's also fewer comics doing longer, 20-30 minute routines, so you really get to see what each comedian is made of. Fortunately, given that most of the comics performing have been doing it for at least a decade – and usually more – that's not such a risky proposition. An excellent, self-contained night out. Fri & Sat 8pm; $48/$52 with dinner, less without. Discounts often available.


Daily

The Comic’s Lounge

If only one night of comedy a week isn’t enough, then there’s the Comic’s Lounge that puts on shows 6 nights a week. The lesser known comics can try and hone their skills, and the well known comics can entertain without fail. Tickets range from $15-20, with an added dinner and show package. Mon-Sat 8pm; $15-25.

First published on . Updated on .

By Tyson Wray   |  

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