D.C.’s Bentzen Ball Comedy Festival is back with five nights of laughter and hosts like Tig Notaro, Rosie O’Donnell and Jeff Garlin.
The festival, native to D.C. and now in its third installment, will put on comedy shows at familiar venues like Lisner Auditorium and the 9:30 Club from Oct. 1 to 5, with each night jam-packed with both famed and local stand ups. This year, the Bentzen Ball adds a twist to run-of-the-mill stand up with improv, celebrity performances and even a cooking class taught by executive chef Scott Drewno.
Here’s our guide to getting the most laughs out of your Bentzen Ball experience.
The 2014 Bentzen Ball starts off with a wave to tradition as Notaro, a favorite on both “Conan” and “This American Life,” returns to host alongside a star entourage. Jeff Garlin (“Arrested Development” and “Curb Your Enthusiasm”) and Kyle Kinane (“Drunk History”) are among the five comedians opening for the festival at the Lincoln Theater on Oct. 1 at 7 p.m.
Lincoln Theater, 1215 U St. NW, $30
Wild Horses Improv
Not only will the event include “Orange is the New Black” actress Lauren Lapkus (the rookie correctional officer? Yep, that’s her), but the show is also free. Join host Mike Lebovitz for this easy-on-the-wallet, hard-on-the-humor comedy show Oct. 2 at 5 p.m., just a few blocks from campus at the Kennedy Center’s Millenium Stage.
Millennium Stage at the Kennedy Center, 2700 F St. NW, Free
Breast Cancer Bites
Munch on top-quality grub, meet face-to-face with “The Daily Show” producer Jena Friedman and learn how dumplings are made (let’s be honest, you’ve wondered this before), all while donating to charity. For $65, event-goers can take a dumpling class by executive chef Scott Drewno. Proceeds benefit GW’s Mobile Mammography Unit, so you can go ahead and grab that second helping – it’s for a good cause.
Breast Cancer Bites will take place Oct. 4 at 11 a.m. at The Source by Wolfgang Puck, a three-story asian fusion restaurant ranked third on Washingtonian Magazine’s “Top 100 Restaurants” list.
The Source by Wolfgang Puck, 575 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, $65
An Evening with Rosie O’Donnell and Tig Notaro
See the beloved “The View” co-host, actress, activist, author and comedian Rosie O’Donnell live at GW’s Lisner Auditorium on Oct. 4 at 7 p.m. Known for her consistently controversial – yet consistently hilarious – jokes, this year’s Bentzen Ball special guest is a celeb not to be missed. Tickets are running between $29.99 and $39.99, depending on the seats.
Lisner Auditorium, $29.99 to $39.99
Find tickets for all 12 shows at Brightest Young Things.