Official New York Blog

Submitted by Lizz Riggs on tagged in:

The Magnet Theatre is an NYC hotbed of improv comedy that has the audience rolling in laughter during every performance. Located in the heart of Chelsea, this theater puts on comedy shows that are consistently heaped in praise by critics, audience members and fellow comedians alike. So of course we had to check it out and see what all the fuss was about, and we're now recommending a show to every NYC Tourist who enjoys a good laugh at a great price.

Each night of the week, the members of this comedy club perform silly antics, recite ludicrous and hilarious material, sing, tell stories and most importantly, make us laugh. The venue is small enough for everyone to have a good seat, and as the house gets full (which we're assuming happens nightly) the room has a great vibe that lasts through the entire performance.

And what goes better with comedy than alcohol? You definitely don't need drinks to make these shows funny, but it's hard to resist grabbing a beer or a glass of wine on the way in at these prices. That's right, reasonably priced drinks in New York City. Shocking, we know.

The Experience

Magnet Theatre NYC

In a night themed "Plaid Thighs," we saw Trike - Nick Kanellis and Ed Herbstman (subbing in for Peter McNerney) conjure up wacky situations and supply plenty of laughs.

The duo displayed some of the finest qualities you look for in improv -- timing, chemistry, and the understanding of when to segue into another skit. Whether it was reenacting scenes from Spiderman, fighting over a girlfriend, or teaching choir, Kanellis and Herbstman knew how to keep the audience interested and laughing.

In particular, Herbstman was superb in mastering facial expressions and other physical subtleties that really enhance the humor in the situation. Kanellis, on the other hand, excelled in feeding off of Herbstman's energy and applying the quick wit necessary for improv. The high point of the night was during the Spiderman skit, as Herbstman suddenly and daringly climbed the stage and hung upside down in order to recreate the famous kiss scene from the movie.

The show lasted roughly one hour before Kanellis and Herbstman bowed and were showered with applause. Overall, it was an enjoyable and entertaining show, one that is worth experiencing again.

What to Know

  • How Long: Each show lasts for around one hour of hilarious entertainment.
  • When To Go: The mainstage is located at 254 W. 29th Street, NYC. The shows run each night, usually starting at 7 pm and ending around midnight, but this varies by night and show, so visitors should really check the Magnet Theater schedule for the most up to date information.
  • Who can come: Alcohol is served at this NYC comedy club, so even your friends who don't go anywhere they can't catch a buzz will like it. Bring along anyone and everyone who enjoys a good laugh, including all the cheapos. It might be best to leave the kids at home for this one though.
  • Price: Show prices range from $5-$10 depending on performance. Those looking for a particularly great deal should head over on a Wednesday night, when the admission price is $7 for the entire night of comedy shows.
  • And Don't Forget the Improv Class: For aspiring comedians out there, the Magnet Theatre can be an ideal destination for their series of improv classes that are known for transforming ordinary New Yorkers into comedy pros. These classes standout from some of the other improv offerings around the Big Apple in that many of the Intro ones are free to the public - a total anomaly in NYC. There are even improv classes designed to guide kids and teens in the art of comedy, as well as more advanced classes for the experienced comedians out there.
    The improv classes are held in their training center at 259 W. 30th Street, on the second floor.The improv class schedule varies by week and depending on what class visitors are interested in attending, so checking the Magnet Theater website to find one that appeals to you would be prudent in this case as well.