Who’s Who in Blue Heaven in 2022
By Jack Brummett
Blue Heaven Comedy Festival returns with hilarious performers and entertaining acts. FringeArt’s lineup this year will have you holding your sides and gasping for breath between laughs on April 29th and 30th. Read on for a sampling of what these two nights of stellar comedians and entertainers holds.
Zack Zucker is a comedian and film artist based in New York, Los Angeles, and London who has sold out original comedy shows at the Edinburgh Fringe, Just For Laughs Festival: Montreal, Glastonbury, and Melbourne International Comedy Festival, and his solo show, JACK TUCKER: COMEDY STAND-UP HOUR, sold out multiple runs at the Soho Theatre in London, the New York Comedy Festival, and Mumbai’s That Comedy Club. He will be the MC for the Blue Heaven Comedy Festival on Friday, April 29th. He will also be teaching a clown workshop the same day.
Mary Beth Barone
Mary Beth Barone, a Manhattan-based actor/writer/comedian, was recently named one of Comedy Central’s Up Next and performed at their Clusterfest showcase and she hosts a show called Drag His Ass: A F*ckboy Treatment Program. She also has produced, written, and starred-in the sketch series Double Homicide and the acclaimed short film Mary Beth’s Sex Tape. She is currently on her Just a Girl tour, and will be performing her act at FringeArts on April 29th.
Ali Macofsky is an LA based comedian who has received over three million views on Just For Laughs Digital, she hosts a weekly podcast called Resting Bitch, and has opened for big name comics at theaters and arenas as well as for musical artist St. Vincent. She is known for her deadpan-style and telling direct, gut-punching jokes.
Robby Hoffman, a Canadian-American comedian/writer, has worked on The Chris Gethard Show, Baroness Von Sketch Show, Workin’ Moms, and Odd Squad. Hoffman released her first stand-up special, I’m Nervous, in 2019. Currently, she is the host of Robby Hoffman Consulting Group (formerly Dykevice), a live call-in advice show on Gethard’s comedy network Planet Scum Live. Her comedy is derived from real experiences, looking at the mundane and making it hilarious.
Dylan Adler is a New York based comedian/actor/writer who has performed musical comedy at the New York Comedy Festival and was featured in the New York Times for his show “Rape Victims are Horny Too” with Kelly Bachman. He performed sketch on Maude Night at UCB and performed musical improv on a house team at The PIT. His calling card is his unique blend of musical and physical comedy while touching on sensitive subjects.
Martin Urbano is a comedian who has performed on Jimmy Kimmel Live, Comedy Central, The CW, and recently taped a set for the stand-up comedy series This Joka with Will Smith and Westbrook Studios and hosted several episodes of Chris Gethard Presents on MNN. He now hosts the game show, Who Wants $2.69? with Martin Urbano and has performed at Bonnaroo, Boston Calling, New York Comedy Fest, and more. He is currently working on developing a sitcom for TBS as well as writing for the Viceland TV show Danny’s House.
Ashton Womack, comedian from Houston now based in New York, is currently a writer on The Daily Show, wrote for the 2021 Grammy Awards and debuted a half hour set on Comedy Central in 2021. He was a Just For Laughs New Face back in 2018, as well as a featured artist in the Breakout Artist Comedy Series from Carolines on Broadway. He can also be seen on Comedy Central’s Alternatino, Vice Live, and the upcoming Paramount feature film, Clifford. Starting comedy at 16, he has since won multiple accolades in his hometown and is showcasing his well honed comedic craft on the FringeArts stage, on April 29th.
Marcia Blesky, a New York based comedian/writer/musician, co-wrote Handmaid’s Tale: The Musical, a show that sold out in New York and Washington D.C. She was on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon as part of the Battle of the Instant Songwriters and was a speaker at the 2021 TED Women Conference in Palm Springs. She is well known for her musical comedic style and biting feminist commentary weaving through her acts.
Gigi Holliday is a NY based burlesque performer originally from Washington D.C. She has performed on stages in in Canada, Maryland, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Massachusetts, North Carolina, New York, Virginia, Georgia, Louisiana, Washington State, and her native home Washington, D.C. where she was one of the first burlesque performers in 60 years to perform at the historic Howard Theater. GiGi has headlined the New Jersey Burlesque Festival, Jeezy’s Juke Joint, and the 2nd Annual Texas Queerlesque Festival. In 2020, GiGi became a member of The House of Knyle. Aside from her onstage performances, offstage she has started Gi² Productions, in which she has founded Zou Zou Burlesque Revue, Chocolate Lounge: Performers of Color Burlesque/ Variety show, and La Burlesque Follies with Palace Productions.
Sarah Sherman aka Sarah Squirm is currently a featured player on Saturday Night Live. She is also known for her live show, Helltrap Nightmare, and for being chosen to be a New Face at the 2021 Montreal Just For Laughs Comedy Festival. Sarah opened for Eric Andre’s national tour and wrote on The Eric Andre Show. She worked on the Adult Swim series Three Busy Debras and Netflix’s Magic for Humans. Her physicality and crazy performance attire has her standing out amongst her peers.
Crossroads Comedy Theater
Crossroads Comedy Theater is an online, on stage, and on air home for comedy shows and podcasts featuring hilarious performers from the Philadelphia area and beyond. Crossroads was founded by Mike Marbach of the Philly Improv Theater in 2021, and found a way to keep everyone laughing during quarantine by making strides in streaming comedy performances online. Each show produced by Crossroads harbors immensely talented performers who have their own unique qualities to bring to the table.
Shannon Fahey is a comedian and performance artist from Philadelphia. Another Philly Improv Theater veteran, they are known for their character-driven and ludicrous comedic style. Fahey is one half of Put It Down, a monthly comedy and music showcase at Johnny Brenda’s. They have also opened for national acts like Whitmer Thomas and Peter Smith using their solo work. Fahey has been a staple at Good Good Comedy Theater in their sketch house team (Darlings), and is one half of the legendary Philly performance art and comedy duo (Queer Bait).
Alyssa Al-Dookhi, a Kuwaiti-American comedian, writer, and event host in Philadelphia, has made it their mission to create spaces for marginalized artists in comedy. They’ve been on the Netflix karaoke competition show ‘Sing On!’ with Tituss Burgess, CNN’s “United Shades of America” with W. Kamau Bell, and as the warm-up comic on season 5 of Netflix’s ‘Queer Eye’. They have also performed at Helium Comedy Club, Asylum NYC and have headlined at Punch Line Philly. An ongoing project of theirs is their podcast, “Make Up or Break Up.” Al-Dookhi has found a well-balanced blend of comedy and their cultural identity of their stand-up, with one informing the other.
Alejandro Morales, a Chilean producer and comedian based in South Philly, is a founding member of stand-up collective Whiz City Comedy, producer and host of the monthly food-themed rap battle game show Eat Your Beats, creator of the web series Sadulous, spanish-language improvisor with Que Comedy, and performing at independent showcases as well as establishments like Helium Comedy Club, Punch Line Philly, and Good Good Comedy Theatre.
Part of the musical and comedic performance group yurodivy, these next four artists will be reprising their roles from the 2021 Fringie award-winning show.
Nick Gillette is a physical theatre artist, co-founder emeritus of Almanac Dance Circus Theatre, and an instructor and performer at the Philly Improv Theater. He is the co-creator of improvised absurdist plays such as The Wadsworth Constant. He has performed with Cabaret Red Light, BRAT Productions, Lighting Rod Special, Pig Iron Theatre Co., Alex Bechtel, International Contemporary Dance Festival of Mexico City, and Vancouver International Improv Festival’s International Ensemble.
Alexandra Tatarsky works in performance art, dance-theater, comedy, and music. She has performed at venues such as MoMA PS1 and The New Museum, and she has published several chapbooks, including Vacant Love and Embrace the Tree. She teaches workshops on masks, bouffon, and holy fools in theory and practice. They explore their thoughts on voice and despair through their work, and through the image of the clown they want to keep pushing others to try and try again.
Aram Alan Aghazarian
Aram Alan Aghazarian is a performer, theater creator, and teacher. He is a founding member of Strange Attractor Theatre Company, and his theater work includes Pig Iron Theater Company, Team Sunshine Performance Corporation, Swim Pony Performing Arts, Lightning Rod Special, Perseverance Theatre, Alaska. As well as performing with them, Aram teaches in the Pig Iron MFA/Certificate program and at Community College of Philadelphia where he teaches Movement and Dance for Actors, and Rehearsal and Performance.
Fred Brown has performed, directed, and coached improv comedy for the last seven years at improv festivals in the US and Canada as well as accompanied improv groups with live, musical accompaniment, and composed songs for podcasts, theatrical productions, independent films, and short comedic web sketches. For six years he has performed weekly improv comedy shows in Philadelphia, with the teams The Future and Dream Tank.
Click here to buy tickets for the April 29th show.