Comedians delivered big laughs at the 2016 Ladies of Laughter preliminary shows. Selected from over a 150 submissions from across the country, 40 performers are competing for cash prizes, paid bookings and the Ladies of Laughter titles in a series of shows throughout New York.
The first of four preliminary events hosted by Dena Blizzard at Gotham Comedy Club in New York City, set the bar high as it featured seasoned pros such as Jessica Delfino, Lisa Harmon and Joan Weisblatt and newcomer Jani Tillery. Comedians Michele Durante and Taffy Jaffe produced the biggest laughs of the night, quickly becoming audience favorites. Both Durante and Jaffe nabbed first place in the pro and newcomer categories, respectively, while veteran Stacy Kendro and new comic Mutiya Vision were named runners-up.
The second preliminary event, hosted by Erin Harkes at The Funny Bone in Albany a week later, showcased a new set of funny ladies as pro comic Kelly MacFarland and newcomer Reece Cotton took home first place. Comedians Doreen Watson (pro) and Andrea Cerbin (new) were named runners-up.
Additional winners and runners-up will be announced at two upcoming preliminary events at Gotham Comedy Club and Levity Live. The winners and a wild card entry will advance to the Grand Finale show at Turning Stone Resort Casino on August 20.
Produced by Peggy Boyce, Ladies of Laughter is sponsored by Turning Stone Resort Casino, Stage Time magazine and Skinnygirl Cocktails. A percentage of proceeds from the events will benefit Buddy Cares – an animal rights advocacy group that provides wellness and services to abandoned animals in need.
Upcoming Preliminary Events and Grand Finale
Monday, July 25 at 7:30pm: New York City − Gotham Comedy Club – Hosted by Michele Balan and Jane Condon
Thursday, August 11 at 7:30pm: West Nyack, NY − Levity Live – Hosted by Patty Rosborough
Saturday, August 20 at 8:00pm: The Grand Finale Show – Turning Stone Resort Casino, Verona, NY – Hosted by Tammy Pescatelli.
For more information on Ladies of Laughter, visit www.ladiesoflaughter.org.