The ten best comedy events in Denver this July
Robyn Von Swank/ IFC
July, with its sweltering afternoons and late evening sunsets, is filled with a kind of sun-dappled shapelessness; its days were once described by Ada Louise Huxtable as "jeweled balm for the battered spirit."
Balming the battered is also a standup comedian's job description, and this month promises a healing wave of laughs washing over our arid city, featuring seasoned chortle-mongers from across the country. From one-night only theater appearances by sitcom stars to comedy nerd heroes at local clubs, battered spirits from across the spectrum of comedy fandom will find plenty of opportunities to laugh in air-conditioned comfort.
10. Highlands Comedy Show
Thursday, July 17
The Hai Bar
As the Highlands Comedy Show enters is second month of existence, the fledgling endeavor has defied expectations by bringing in a solid lineup of local headliners week after week. Host and organizer Jon Wilkins has somehow found harmony in the unlikely union of comedy show and sushi restaurant. The Highlands neighborhood is comparatively underrepresented as a destination for weekly comedy shows, and lineups this well curated are notable anywhere in the city. The venue will have its biggest headliner yet when John "Hippieman" Novosad, a local mainstay who's appeared on The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson twice takes the stage. The rest of the lineup features Rick Bryan, Leif Cedar, Ben Bryant, and Nichole McCormack, and is solid enough to keep people laughing through mouthfuls of unagi.
The show begins at 8 p.m. Tickets cost $10 at the door and can also be purchased from Wilkins' website.
9. Big Jay Oakerson
Comedian and storyteller Big Jay Oakerson has a distinctive comedic voice that has netted him appearances on Inside Amy Schumer, Comedy Underground with Dave Attell and Louie. Oakerson's album, An American Storyteller was released by Comedy Central and highlights his ability to engage audiences with long form storytelling about his strange experiences.
Shows begin at 7:30 p.m., with additional late shows at 9:45 p.m. on the weekend. Tickets cost $15 and can be purchased on the Improv's website.
8. Lucha Libre & Laughs
The Oriental Theater
The 'roided out brainchild of comic, filmmaker, and unabashed Luchador fan Nick Gossert, Lucha Libre and Laughs gets back into the ring this month with another great lineup. Easily the most costly and elaborate joke shows produced in Denver, this Sex Pot comedy-sponsored showcase requires immense hustle, especially this month's show, which arrives hot on the heels of last month's Denver Taco Festival. Gossert's efforts have paid off, however, as Lucha Libre and Laughs has grown into one of Denver's signature shows and a favorite of local comics. This month features comedy from Andrew Orvedahl, Nathan Lund, Sam Tallent, and Jordan Doll before getting to the main event, a wrestling match between Delta Jr. and Golden Star.
Doors open at 6:30 for the 7 p.m. show. Tickets cost $10 and are available from the Oriental's Website.
7. Bill Engvall
Friday, July 11
Bill Engvall doesn't appeal to everyone, but he certainly has a loyal contingent of fans across the country, many of whom will be represented at this one-night-only show at the Paramount. He is best known for his eponymous TBS sitcom (which co-starred a young Jennifer Lawrence) and for performing on various incarnations of the Blue Collar Comedy Tour with Ron White, Jeff Foxworth and Larry the Cable Guy.
The show begins at 8 p.m. Ticket prices range from $39.50 to $59.50 and can be purchased from the Paramount box office website.