Friday, January 21, 2011

From the City Paper's Arts and Entertainment Blog!

CRITICAL MASS - LOL WITH IT: Q&A with local comedy booker Corey Cohen

Friday, January 21st, 2011 at 12:00 pm
posted by Ryan Carey

On Sat., Jan. 22, Philly’s hardest working independent comedy booker, Corey Cohen, brings SNL and 30 Rock writer Hannibal Buress to Connie’s Ric Rac (1132 South Ninth St.). Today, he takes time out fof his busy schedule to chat with Ryan about his up-and-coming booking company.

Critical Mass: How long have you been doing Corey Cohen Comedy Productions?

Corey Cohen: I’ve been doing CCCP for nearly a year now, as far as being completely focused on booking standup comics is concerned. Prior to that I was in a sketch group called “The Sixth Borough,” and during that time I also ran a monthly comedy variety show called Steal This Show. So I’ve been producing comedy shows for a few years now, but CCCP is really a proper attempt at bringing the best comedy I can, standup or otherwise, to Philadelphia.

CM: Are all your shows at the Ric Rac?

CC: As of right now, yes, though my hope is to expand into the future. But I have a strong loyalty to the Ric Rac. I’ve been working with them for years, since it was just a shell of what it is now, and I have a great deal of love and affection for those guys. Plus I think that Connie’s is an awesome venue, perfectly built for comedy. Frank and Joe Tartaglia–the brothers who co-run the joint–are probably some of the funniest people I know. Watching them interact is a show in and of itself. I think their ongoing support, coupled with the Ric Rac being an awesome black box venue in South Philly, make’s Connie’s a pretty ideal place for these shows.

CM: Does being a booker have any implications on being a comic? (i.e. more stage time?)

CC: It’s hard to say. Since I’ve ramped up the production side of things, I haven’t been performing as much. My original thought was that doing these shows would parlay into being in some of them, but the truth is I’m really enjoying putting the shows together right now, and that’s enough for me. Plus, I have other comedy writing projects I’m working on that I would also like to use CCCP to produce and promote. Being someone who does comedy, the biggest advantage is already being very familiar with the local comedy scene, and being able to support it and expand it. Philly is an increasingly young town that is long overdue for a comedy revival. People want to laugh, and I’m happy as long as I’m helping to make it happen.

Corey is always interested to know which comedians people want to see in Philly, so visit him at Corey Cohen Comedy Productions. And stop back by Critical Mass at 2 p.m. for Ryan’s interview with Connie’s Ric Rac manager Frank Tartaglia about all the funny business that’s been going on there lately.

The original link:

Part 2: Frank Tartaglia, owner of Connie's Ric Rac

Part 3: Hannibal Buress, comedian and pickle juice enthusiast:

Thanks to Ryan Carey and City Paper for the articles!

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