The Ten Best Comedy Events in Denver this September

As the year lumbers toward autumn and Denver shakes off its summer-festival hangovers, our city's bleary-eyed revelers have few better live entertainment options than comedy. From a nice roster of comedy-club headliners rolling through town to a banner month for some of Denver's most esteemed local showcases to a greedily stacked comedy festival, comedy fans have solid options nearly every week. Seriously, September is packed with so many great shows that we could easily double the list and glaring omissions would still abound. And the lineup gets off to a very strong start today.

See also: The Ten Best Geek Events in Denver in September

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The ten best comedy events in Denver this August

By the time August rolls around, summer seems to have lost some of its luster. We've sweltered through weeks of muggy heat and unexpected downpours, Hollywood has already burned through its popcorniest blockbusters, and attractions close down as schools prepare to open. It falls to comedy, then, to entertain browbeaten Denverites -- and fortunately, the area is replete with giggles this month. With two showcases in Boulder's rapidly growing comedy market, a Red Rocks birthday celebration with an increasingly less reclusive comedy icon, and a homegrown comedy festival, there are enough great shows to keep you laughing until autumn.

See also: Adam Cayton-Holland on doubling down for High Plains Comedy Festival's second year

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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.

See also: The ten best geek events in Denver in July

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Nick Gossert on Lucha Libre & Laughs, and the connection between comics and wrestlers

Geoff Decker
Gossert refereeing Luchador Fuego
The Lucha Libre & Laughs showcase is clearly a labor of love for producer Nick Gossert. A filmmaker, comedian and bumbling referee, Gossert is responsible for not only booking the funniest comics in Denver, but also juggling the schedules of all the wrestlers involved, renting the ring and doing the lion's share of promotion. Despite the challenge of putting this all together, and a few minor setbacks, the Lucha Libre & Laughs with celebrate its one-year anniversary with Laughmania! on Sunday, May 11. This edition event features comedians Deacon Gray, Kevin O'Brien, Kristin Rand and Chuck Roy, with wrestlers Delta Jr., El Tecolote, Matt Classic and International Superstar Colt Cabana, and running color commentary from Jordan Doll and Nate Balding. In honor of Sunday's special evening of gutbusters and backbreakers, Westword caught up with Gossert to look back on a year of shows, discuss his love of cheesy Lucha movies, and the similarities between comedy and wrestling.

See also: Lucha Libre & Laughs will make wrestling funny on purpose this Sunday

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Rob Ryzin talks about his tough past and upcoming wrestling match with idol Matt Hardy

D-Rock Imaging
Rob Ryzin
Pro-wrestler Rob Ryzin is no stranger to the ring -- but this Sunday, November 10, the local hero will be performing a fighting first. Going up against his wrestling hero, Matt Hardy of the WWE's Hardy Boyz fame, Ryzin will take on the Sensei of Mattitude in Twist of Hate, one of his biggest matches to date.

In advance of this massive throwdown, Ryzin spoke candidly with Westword about his tough childhood, keeping a positive attitude and what it's like training to take on his idol and rival in the ring.

See also: Hardcore wrestler "Joey Terrofyn" McDougal checks in, post-training in Mexico City

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Comedian Nathan Lund on Vonnegut, serial killers and the proletariat

Reading is about more than following a narrative or learning facts; it can also be a profound shared experience that culminates in a better understanding of ourselves and each other. In that spirit, welcome to the Westword Book Club, a weekly feature celebrating the books that inspire Denver artists.

Nathan Lund, a member of the Fine Gentleman's Club, may not strike Denver comedy fans as a man of letters with his wooly appearance, but those who listen closely will not be surprised: There's a lot going on under his direct, unvarnished style of joke-telling. An integral figure in the local scene, Nathan Lund is right at the center of what promises to be a banner month for Denver comedy, as he's performing at the High Plains Comedy Festival and mounting a festival with the other fine gents at the end of August. Lund is also the host of a weekly open mic on Fridays at Three Kings, in addition to a regular feature at Too Much Fun, the Fine Gentleman's Club Wednesday night event at Deer Pile. This week, Westword caught up with Lund outside of a dreadful comedy show in Aurora to discuss wrestling, serial killers, Vonnegut and politics.

See Also:
-Westword Book Club: Evan Nix on Joseph Campbell, Bruce Campbell and The Wiz
-Too Much Funstival comedians on how Denver's scene has evolved
-Podcaster Taylor Gonda on bonding over pop-culture and reading the classics

Westword: Thanks for agreeing to do an interview on such short notice.

Nathan Lund: I've been wanting to do one of these since I read Sam's. So, alright, let's talk about books in Aurora, the land of 25 books! They've got the Anarchist's Cookbook here and they've got 12 Habits of Successful Drug Dealers. Let's talk about books, me and you, outside this weird show in Aurora. Let's talk about books. Books, man. Books.

What do you like to read? Are you reading something now?

I'm reading A People's History of the United States for the first time and some of the information if just infuriating. Because it's been the same from the beginning, literally from Jump Street, which was in Boston. In 1640. It was fucked from right then, from so long ago, when the whole power structure we're struggling against now was set up. Howard Zinn explains it all so quickly, with multiple examples of what was happening in Colonial America. He describes how Columbus just decimated, decimated as in literally kill-every-tenth-dude, the native tribal population. He thought that he'd bumped into India, but that the voyage was much shorter than he expected, and I guess he thought "well, I better just start killing people." That's how the first few hundred pages have been so far. I doubt the rest of the book has anything that will make me feel better about our history though. I'm excited to keep reading it though, because it's such a seminal book. Anybody who is pretty smart and pretty counter-culture has read People's History, so I'm excited to finally get to it.

You're a Johnny-Come-Lately.

It happens to me all the time. I haven't read a lot of the books that people consider essential, seminal, and classic. We could do a list of books I haven't read and it would be like the anti-book club. I have read a lot of random things, and will randomly connect with people who've read the same stuff,but I missed out on some of the basics. I don't have all my bases covered. I haven't even seen the Godfather movies.


Yeah, there's a lot classic books that I missed too. I hadn't read People's History until now, I haven't read Heart of Darkness, but I might've read the Cliff's notes.

We're you not into reading at school? Did you use Cliff's notes as a shortcut often?

Not too much. I used Cliff's notes on War and Peace, which was a pretty smooth move.

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Lucha Libre & Laughs will make wrestling funny on purpose this Sunday

Don-John Kulish
Featuring bouts of professional wrestling and stand-up comedy performances from local favorites Nate Balding, Brad Galli, Bobby Crane and Deacon Gray, Lucha Libre & Laughs, happening this Sunday, presents a strange hybrid of entertainment.

Hosted by everyone's second-favorite lounge lizard, the ribald Bobby Valentino, the main focus of the evening will be wrestling matches between both American wrestlers and lucha legends such as Golden Star, El Tecolote, Broke Back Billy, Arik Angel, Fuerza Chicanana and Joker Girl, with running color commentary throughout the night from comedians and wrestling fans Sam Tallent and Nathan Lund.

See also:
- Joey "Terrofyn" McDougal talks Lucha Libre and Primos wrestling
- A guide to DIY comedy tours with the Fine Gentleman's Club
- Lucha Libre, Locally - What's So Funny steps into the ring

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WWE Wrestling spectating: Don't knock it 'til you try it

If my idol Cyndi Lauper so loved Wrestlemania, how could I not?
It's easy to be cynical. I would know -- I spent a good decade of my life hating on others' interests that I deemed uncool. For the most part, I've quit full-time cynicism, because it's exhausting to be judgmental, not to mention it makes you boring and not fun to be around. (Though I will never give up being cynical about burlesque, corporate music festivals, trivia nights and marathons that require adults to play dress-up.)

This past weekend, though, I broke through some serious stereotypes when I scored floor seats for WWE Raw World Tour: The Road to Wrestlemania at 1STBANK Center. What I saw was so awesome, I would have been an asshole to not recognize it.

See also:
- WWE Raw's The Miz talks competition in the ring and becoming a recent fan favorite
- Hardcore wrestler "Joey Terrofyn" McDougal checks in, post-training in Mexico City
- Ten signs your Colorado man might not be man enough for you

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WWE Raw's The Miz talks competition in the ring and becoming a recent fan favorite

Michael Gregory Mizanin, better known as pro-wrestler The Miz, made a name for himself as a cast member of 2001's The Real World: Back to New York. But in the cade since then, the actor, TV host and professional wrestler has appeared on dozens of television shows and made a name for himself in the ring.

In advance of his stop in Broomfield this Saturday, March 9, with the WWE Raw World Tour: Road to Wrestlemania, we caught up with the Miz to talk about his love of fans and what he likes best about being a WWE wrestler.

See also:
- "Joey Terrofyn" McDougal talks Lucha Libre and Primos wrestling
- Twenty messiest Jell-O wrestling moves at Lucha Rama
- Travis Masse: Former wrestling coach accused of doing more than wrestling with student

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Primos Wrestling goes worldwide for Sunday's International Fight Club 3 showdown

Categories: Events, Wrestling

David Sanchez
Wrestling worlds collide this weekend when Primos Hardcore & Wrestling welcomes fighters from Canada and Mexico to throw down with some of the company's biggest stars. This Sunday, January 27, Primos will host a first-ever exhibition of three unique wrestling styles with Fight Club 3, bringing Hardcore, Lucha Libre and Comic Con together for one night of epic matches.

"We're fighting for supremacy; this is a border war," says Primos owner and wrestler Joey "Terrofyn" McDougal. After training in Mexico City last year and then wrestling in Winnipeg, McDougal made some connections -- and possibly brought beef back with him to Colorado. Either way, he says he and his company of wrestlers are ready to settle things the only way they know how: in the ring.

See also:
- Hardcore wrestler "Joey Terrofyn" McDougal checks in, post-training in Mexico City
- "Joey Terrofyn" McDougal talks Lucha Libre and Primos wrestling
- Slideshow: Primos REVoLUCHA at Red & Jerry's

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