years of mismanagement and poor programming to overcome and they also have a sort of cursed blessing of location on Universal CityWalk. Sure, it's got a lot of foot traffic and ample (paid) parking, but it's not your first thought on where to go to see comedy and it's hard for the club itself to jump out to CityWalk visitors among all the bling of the next door piano bar and animatronic fire-breathing dragon.The Jon Lovitz Comedy Club and Podcast Theater has been having some great shows lately, but has anyone noticed? They still have The Stink of
They recently brought in Dee Burdett, who is known and loved by the LA comedy world from her years at The Improv and LaughStub. She's already made a number of changes to the shows, including those run by outside producers. Admirably, she's kicked out some of the beginners' bringer shows in favor of some solid mid-level producers. It's great for comedians, but not necessarily for business. It's also the kind of subtle change that's hard to convey to the public. A random person who attended a terrible show her friend was booked on a year ago would logically assume that's the sort of lineup this club puts on every night. And you don't want to go the Dominos route of "Yeah, we WERE pretty shitty, but we fixed it!"
That said, I went over the hill on Tuesday to catch the live taping for the Jon Lovitz Comedy Network. Hosted by Brian Whitaker, it included a good mix of younger guys and veterans doing 7 minutes sets. It had the added enticement of no cover and no drink minimum so the ground floor was about 2/3 full for guys like Brent Weinbach, Jayson Thibault, Sandy Danto, Dan Madonia, Mark Serritella and Justine Marino.
I'm pulling for the place. I love Dee and Dee loves comedy and that's what we want out of someone running a comedy club.