Friday night was the first part of the three night comedy show that is taking place over the next few months, and it couldn't have gone better. The house was packed and the crowd was amazing! We heard stories ranging from tiny kitten rodeos to a phone sex line, meth heads from the west side of Charleston, and so much more. The judges did a great job and actually had unanimous decisions for the top two spots, and the comedians seemed to agree on who killed that night.
Ian Nolte and Angela Davis, representing Huntington, absolutely killed it. They brought their best 5 minutes and the crowd responded more loudly than I thought Fireside Bar and Lounge could get. It had been a few years since I had seen Angela perform, and boy was that refreshing. She was absolutely dominant with people screaming they were laughing so hard. Ian brought the house down with two of his signature bits that are two of my favorite comedy bits I've ever heard. It made me smile that people with two different styles are advancing, making the finals already diverse, and I can't wait to see their longer sets October 23rd.
Not to be overlooked, the show was solid from top to bottom. Tommy Mac kicked things off for us and did a fantastic job. Cody Lambert was spot on with his observations, and as usual, was hilarious. Steven Sneed, Ryan Gilleran, and Lynn Browder also brought some great laughs. Lynn opened up about trying to date while being a mother, Ryan told us some great tales from the sea (well, the Kanawha River), and Steven finished the night off very strongly. Special shout out to Ryan, who has only done comedy a few times, but he didn't seem out of place with the comedians who have been doing this for a few years.
The judges, Ben, Brandon, Brook, Kami, and Tony did a great job and I felt like they were fair and right on with what I was thinking (along with the crowd). I was worried that having judges, they may score a little differently than the crowd would have wanted, but not on this night. Everything couldn't have gone better. The bartenders were great, as they always are. I like them, because sometimes bartenders don't realize that they need to speak a little softer during the show as well, but these two did so and kept people without empty glasses! Thanks everybody for coming out, and I look forward to seeing you all for part two in September (it's on the 25th at 9:00 pm).