Archive for October, 2011

Laugh For Sight NYC with Robert Klein, Steven Wright, Tom Papa, Judah Friedlander, and more A Recap!

October 9, 2011

Well, another year has gone by, and we just held our Sixth Annual Laugh For Sight New York City at the World Famous Gotham Comedy Club. The benefit was held this past Monday, October 6, 2011. This historic night of comedy featured Legendary Comedians Robert Klein and Steven Wright. They were joined by some of the biggest names in comedy including Judah Friedlander from 30 Rock, Tom Papa from The Marriage Ref, Eddie Brill the Audience Warm Up at The Late Show with David Letterman, Jessica Kirson from Comedy Central Present, Dan Naturman from Last Comic Standing, and of course me, Brian Fischler and Nash from Top Gear USA.

The evening started out with a silent auction that began at 7pm. The Silent Auction was Presented by Patron Spirits. For those of you who have been to Gotham Comedy Club. The Silent Auction was held in the down stairs portion of the club where Gotham has a smaller show room. Of course, this room filled up quickly as sighted and blind people came together to support Laugh For Sight and help raise money for retinal degenerative eye disease research and awareness. The great thing about Laugh For Sight is we are now getting a lot of visually impaired people coming out to enjoy the evening. People with several different kinds of eye diseases were in attendance. The Silent Auction was hosted by Radio Personality and Motivational Speaker, Mark Farrell. Mark of course was in rare formed as he roasted Nash and me during the silent auction. A very special thanks to all of our donors at the Silent Auction. A Very Special Extra Thanks to Comedy Central, The Daily Show with Jon Stewart, The Colbert Report, The Jimmy Fallon Show, Jobson Medical Information, the NY Yankees, Eli Manning, Charlize Theron, Top Gear USA, Susan Michel Limited, Exhale Spa, Kramer Portraits, Felix Rey, Rock of Ages, Second Stage, and if I am forgetting somebody, I am so sorry, and hit me up and I will make sure to thank you.

The Silent Auction ran from 7pm to 830pm. Mark Farrell did a great job encouraging people to get those last minute bids in. Thanks so much to Patron Spirits and Diageo for all of their donations to the silent auction.

As the auction ended, and people were seated in the main show room upstairs at Gotham Comedy Club, we got ready to start the show. As usual, I had my moment of panic as none of the comedians had arrived yet. It passed quickly, as our host for the evening, Dan Naturman came up to me. Soon after our second performer of the evening arrived. For those of you who do not know, all of the amazing comedians who perform at Laugh For Sight, donate their time. This benefit would not happen without their generosity and amazing talent.

We were quite thrilled as the show room was completely packed, and the Yankees were even playing tonight. Dan Naturman took the stage, and another Laugh For Sight was under way. I am normally a nervous wreck as there are so many things going on behind the scenes that we need to make sure run smoothly. My counterpart at Laugh For Sight, and Co-Founder, Scott Wartham did a tremendous job with the silent auction, and helping make sure everything ran smoothly. The staff at Gotham Comedy Club is so amazing, everyone from the owner Chris Mazzilli, to the events Manager Laura, Cyrus at the door, the Managers Sean and Ed, and all the wait staff are fantastic. If all comedy clubs were run the way Gotham is, it was be a much nicer business to work in.

While Dan was on stage getting the audience going, Ed the manager, got me ready to take the stage. I like to go early to get things out of the way, that way I can attend to things going on behind the scene, and not be concerned with my set. After Dan did a wonderful job opening the show, Nash and I took the stage. I was very happy with my set, as I was working on some new material. Nash did a good job not walking around to much on stage. I heard he was staring at a lot of peoples food.

After Nash and I rocked the house, Jessica Kirson took the stage. Wow, I would kill to have her energy. She is a true sweetheart, and one of the hardest working people in stand up comedy today. The crowd really loves her, and her energy kept the crowd in a roar. While Jessica was on stage, a lot of other comedians showed up. Unfortunately, I did not get to see a lot of her set, as I had to be in the lobby to greet our performer’s and see if there was anything they needed. The amazing thing to me about comedians, is they are a laid back bunch, and very low maintenance.

After Jessica, it was Tom Papa. Tom is a fantastic guy. I just got to do a guest spot for him in Florida the week before, so it was great to see him again. Tom had performed at the very first Laugh For Sight, so it was a real pleasure to have him back.

After Tom, Eddie Brill was on stage. Eddie has been a huge supporter of Laugh For Sight, and this was his fifth time performing at Laugh For Sight. We are always so thrilled to have him.

Mext up it was Judah Friedlander. Funny thing, as I first spoke to Judah about Laugh For Sight after our very first benefit. Judah and I were in L.A. at the Melrose Improv, and he told me he would love to be involved in the future, but it all depends if this pilot he just filmed gets picked up. A little show called 30 Rock. Well, we were thrilled that Judah’s shooting schedule finally worked out with Laugh For Sight, and he was able to do the benefit. A man of his word. What a fantastic guy.

Next up was Steven Wright. What a treat, and a great guy. Steven was very helpful promoting this year’s benefit, as he did a Twitter Chat with us a few days earlier where he tweeted via @LaughForSight on Twitter. Please go to our page to check out the chat. Steven was tremendous, as were all of the comedians.

Last up, was our biggest back, Robert Klein. I don’t think Laugh For Sight would still exist if it wasn’t for Robert’s support all these years. He was once again tremendous.

A very special thanks to Dan Naturman, Jessica Kirson, Tom Papa, Eddie Brill, Judah Friedlander, Steven Wright, and Robert Klein. You were all tremendous and the feedback from the audience has been incredible. A lot of people are still laughing.

Additionally, I would like to thank Erica Greenhouse, our photographer at the benefit. You can check our Facebook and Laugh For Sight pages for the great pictures of this year’s benefit. They will be up on our website soon at http://www.laughforsight.com. Our Facebook and Twitter pages can be found under Laugh For Sight.

Overall, it was a very successful evening. We have a lot of possibilities of where we move forward with Laugh For Sight, and I will keep you all informed.