Cozy and comfortable, Bar 82 isn’t a place New Yorkers should skip if they’re in need of a drink and good conversation. The free stand-up comedy every Tuesday, only sweetens the deal!
Located in the tattoo parlor-flooded East Village, Bar 82 resembles an upscale cabin with a cool atmosphere. Wooden floors and brick walls give it that good old camping feel. A large projection screen a couple steps from the pool table gives you a great view of the Yankees getting yanked around by the Texas Rangers while alternative rock booms through the speakers.
The rotating backless seats also give it a 1950s burger joint feel. Plush black seats and couches are present in the house as well, and there is even a nice seasonal Halloween theme. Pumpkins and candles help the bar’s feng-shui, along with the dim red and yellow lights.[caption id="attachment_5575" align="aligncenter" width="452" caption="The Cool and Cozy Bar 82 Forefront."][/caption]
The people are lively and the bartenders are open and prepared to cater to your tastes. My long island iced tea was perfect, setting me up for their Sage Stand-Up Comedy Show.
Once through the back door behind the pool table, the scene changes from dim-lit red to black. There are both high tables with high seats and small tables in the middle of the room, as well as a small stage. The lack of red lights is compensated by the spotlight that shines comics daring enough to step on stage and the Bar 82 audience laugh.
This is where Sage Stand-Up, formerly held at the Sage Theater in Times Square, have been holding their shows for the past three years.
Started by Harrison Greenbaum and Sam Morrill, it’s a show that you can’t go wrong checking out. The comics are great, and you have to commend them for being brave enough to go on stage.[caption id="attachment_5588" align="alignleft" width="150" caption="Harrison Greenabaum"][/caption]
“It’s hard, but it’s fun,” said Greenbaum about performing. “There’s not really enough time to think about how hard it is while you’re on stage.”
A Peter Parker look-alike, Greenbaum is a grinder with a hectic schedule and maniacal work-ethic. He did 700 shows in 2009 alone.
Sage Stand-Up’s acts have been featured on Comedy Central and Last Comic Standing, so there’s no need to worry about their experience.
The atmosphere at Bar 82 is unlike any other. It’s intimate and compact. In a sense, the acts have no choice but to interact with the crowd, whether it’s tough or not. But hey, it’s New York, what do you expect?
A lot of pressure is put on the host to keep the crowd awake in between acts but bearded Baratunde Thurston enjoys the challenge, especially at Bar 82.
“I love performing. I also write and have done on-air work, but there’s nothing like performing,” said Thurston, clad in a gray sports coat and burgundy glasses. “Performing in front of people brings an energy that you can’t get on Twitter. This is like coming home. Even though I perform a lot of places, I don’t miss many shows here.”
Bar 82 is definitely worth a look-see. Their prices are reasonable for drinks and the Sage Comedy Show is free of charge with no drink minimum. Why wouldn’t you?
Photo Credits: SageStandUp.com, Harrison Greenbaum.com