13 Hilarious Comedians Available for NYC Event Entertainment

December 9, 2023 Mario Stewart

Sometimes, NYC event planners could take a cue from Goldilocks. There aren’t many entertainment options that are “just right.” Take music, for example. The younger set would jam to a DJ. But the other half wants to rock to a cover band. When the audience at your New York events is too disparate, you need a solution with universal appeal.

That’s why we’ve compiled this list of 13 hilarious comedians available for NYC events. New York event planners are sure to find a comic in this list to appeal to any assortment of guests. Even better, NYC comics for hire know how to tailor their show to suit your needs. So, make like Goldilocks and hire a comedian who is just right for your NYC event.

1. Marina Franklin

Marina Franklin may have been born in Chicago, but New York claims her as one of the best comedians in Gotham. Franklin has been doing stand-up since 1997 and has a long list of credits to her name, including The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and Conan’s Comic-Con. Most recently, Franklin’s comedy special, Single Black Female, can be seen on various streaming services, including Apple TV and Prime Video.  

Franklin’s comedy steers clear of politics. Instead, she focuses on her personal experiences, such as dating younger men, to riotous effect. Fans describe her style as conversational and likable. And with a set that is refreshingly different from the typical middle-aged comic and a hit podcast to boot, Franklin is as relevant as ever.

2. Julie Klausner

New York native Julie Klausner had her first taste of fame when she was 11 years old and randomly chosen to appear as an extra in Camp MTV. As an adult, she starred in the sitcom Difficult People. Klausner has also written for several television shows, including Saturday Night Live. She also has a podcast, How Was Your Week with Julie Klausner, which Rolling Stone listed as one of the 10 Best Comedy Podcasts of the Moment.

Klausner’s comedy takes aim at New York tourists and her own social awkwardness. Her writing has been hailed as “fearless” and “whip-smart.”

3. Mark Clearview

Mark Clearview’s comedy show is magical—really. He is a magician who just happens to be wickedly funny. The Huffington Post calls Mark Clearview's act “genius.” Clearview has appeared on Penn & Teller: Fool Us, on which the hosts described him as “really, really funny.”

But perhaps Mark Clearview’s proudest claim to fame is the world record he set when he spent two weeks in a straight jacket. He wrote a book about the experience and even delivered a TEDx Talk while wearing a—you guessed it—straight jacket.

Mark Clearview is a self-described class clown, and he’ll wow your guests with his magic while making them laugh.

4. Johnny Lampert

If you’re a NYC event planner looking for an everyman comedian, then look no further than Johnny Lampert. This New York comedian focuses on marriage, weight, and his Jewish background. He riffs on his sister-in-law, his wife, and, of course, himself.

Johnny has appeared on Comedy Central, MTV, and HBO Comedy Showcase. He’s a regular at many of New York’s top comedy clubs, including The Gotham Comedy Club and The Comic Strip.

5. Sheba Mason

With both of her parents in show business, Sheba Mason has comedy in her blood. She had her first taste of the stage at two years old in one of the plays her mother wrote. Since then, she has appeared in several comedy specials and in the movie Reality Disorder.

Mason’s comedy dating in New York, her Jewish heritage, and being raised by a single mom. But she’ll tailor her comedy to your event. Her jokes will be clean—or not—depending on your preferences. Sheba is equally comfortable at churches, synagogues, and corporate events.

6. Frank Vignola

Frank Vignola may be the only comedian in history to make Thomas Aquinas a punchline and pull it off. Frank Vignola’s timing is perfect as he talks about old age, New Yorker burns, and serving sushi to Barbara Streisand. Frank has appeared on Amazon Prime, Comedy Central, and NBC.

Clients call Frank a “delightful guy” with a “great show” who “kept the room always laughing.”

7. Moody McCarthy

With hilarious appearances on the Late Show with David Letterman as well as Late Night with Conan O'Brien, Moody McCarthy has achieved icon status as a New York comedian. McCarthy grew up in Syracuse and attended New York University, but he’s been a staple on the NYC comedy scene since the 90s. But New York event planners are in luck because Moody focuses on private events these days.

Moody’s comedy ranges on everything from relationships to organic peanut butter. One reviewer described Moody as being “original but universal, and smart with being trite.” McCarthy is perfect for all sorts of New York events, but most especially those with a diverse crowd of different ages and backgrounds.

8. Rodney Laney

Don’t hate Rodney Laney because he’s from New Jersey, at least not until you’ve had the chance to hear some good jokes about The Roadkill State. Laney’s comedy focuses on growing up in Jersey. He makes light fun of his underfunded school and middle New Jersey’s backwardness.

Laney has appeared on The Late Late Show, Comedy Central, HBO, and at Gotham Comedy Club. All in all, he’s had a successful career that started on a lark when he attended an improv night at a local club to support a friend. His friend bombed, but on a whim, Laney took the mic and killed. He’s been slaying audiences ever since.

9. Dan Nainan

Dan Nainan’s start in comedy was also an unlikely fluke. Nainan was settled with an impressive career as a senior engineer at Intel. There was only one problem—he had to give presentations. To get over his fear of public speaking, he signed up for a comedy class. He nailed his “final exam,” a show at a local comedy club. Although he sat behind a desk for a couple more years, Nainan got the bug and set out for a career as a New York comedian.

Considering he performed for President Obama, we’d say he’s a success. And your NYC events will be just as successful if you hire this funnyman to entertain your guests.

10. Adam Oliensis

Adam Oliensis has several awards under his belt, including 2015’s #1 Comedian for Hire in New York from Thumbtack.com. Adam has appeared on Comedy Central and at iconic New York comedy clubs, including Comedy Strip Live, Dangerfield’s, and The Laugh Lounge. In addition to his stand-up comedy, Adam has written an award-winning play and has appeared on Broadway.

Adam’s comedy is about parenthood, expensive colleges, and his daughter dating a comic. His humor focuses on “mining both the ironies and silliness" that he claims still "exist in the most humbling situations.”

11. John McClellan

Prize-winning comedian John McClellan has what Long Island Entertainment calls “a razor-sharp sense of sarcasm coupled with a working stiff sensibility.” And Cincinnati City Beat described him as the “Super Villain of Comedy.” All of this may explain why McClellan doesn’t just headline comedy clubs; he also opens up for rock acts, such as David Lee Roth and Collective Soul.

The guests at your NYC events will roar with laughter when you hire John McClellan. McClellan’s comedy runs the gamut from Andrew Zimmern’s Bizarre Foods to hospitals named after dead people.

12. Robin Fox

There’s something in Jersey’s water; even their housewives are funny. Robin Fox talks about having a favorite child, buying her clothes from Sears’ “You’ve Really Let Yourself Go Collection,” and, of course, The Real Housewives of New Jersey. Fox’s comedy is a refreshing take on parenthood, aging, and weight.

These days, NYC event planners can book Fox to make their guests roll with laughter. We’re so glad Robin Fox gave up full-time dieting to become New York’s funniest housewife.

13. Allan Finn

Allan Finn grew up in the South Bronx as the child of Russian-Jewish parents, which is to say he has plenty of fodder for his comedy. But his foray into comedy wasn’t smooth. In addition to his father telling him, “Joy doesn’t exist,” Allan also suffered from stage fright. But it was when he fell down a flight of stairs as an adult and broke his back that he decided to follow his dream of becoming a comic because “life is too short.”

Allan has performed with Jim Gaffigan, Jerry Seinfeld, Dana Carvey, and others. Today, Finn is a well-known fixture in New York comedy clubs.

Hire a Hilarious Comedian for Your New York Events

Event entertainment is such an important aspect of any event you plan. When those engagements call for a little humor, keep this list handy and find a comedian who is just right for your New York events. With the versatility of these New York comics, NYC event planners can find an entertainment option to appeal to the most diverse crowd.

And you can find all of the best event service vendors for all your NYC events at The Event Planner Expo 2024. It's the one events industry event where you can forge new partnerships to elevate your events and your business! Register today to reserve your exhibitor booth while there's still availability!

Previous Article
Live Band or DJ: A Must-See Event Planning Comparison
Live Band or DJ: A Must-See Event Planning Comparison

Check out this ultimate event entertainment comparison to help you decide whether the live band or DJ is be...

Next Article
5 Types of NYC Events That Call for High-Energy DJs
5 Types of NYC Events That Call for High-Energy DJs

More New York event planners are bringing in high-energy DJ services as event entertainment for all types o...