On Tuesday, March 14, Playhouse Square will roll out the red carpet at Mimi Ohio Theatre celebrating the Cleveland Comedy Awards — honoring all facets of local comedy from sketch to standup to improv — courtesy of ComedicCLE.
Cleveland-born comic Dave Hill, co-hosting alongside Megan Brautigam, looks forward to the event not only as a chance to hang out back home but also as an opportunity to shine a light on the top-tier comedians of The Land. Currently based in New York City, Hill is known for his podcast The Dave Hill Goodtime Hour, his music career performing with Cobra Verde and Valley Lodge, and his roles in shows like Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, Joe Pera Talks With You and Modern Family.
“I think it's cool to recognize that there's a scene happening: a great scene and a vibrant scene,” Hill says. “I know for a fact because I perform all over the world. So I see a lot of stuff, and Cleveland has as an amazing comedy scene with world-class comedians.”
Alongside Hill, the awards promise performances from locals Mary Santora, Bill Squire and “many more” according to event organizers.
The nominee categories comprise 23 different awards, from Best Podcast or Road Warrior to Best Comedian and Juggernaut of Comedy.
Local comedy lovers will recognize most names, with Santora and Squire both up for Best Comedian and new but notable names like Secret Society Comedy up for four different awards — Best Web Series, Best Comedy Promoters, Best Producer and Best Comedy Showcase.
According to Hill, the Cleveland Comedy Awards add to the mounting evidence that the local scene has the might and talent to rival other major cities.
“There's a lot of cool stuff happening and so many great comedians,” he says. “Sometimes people think, like, ‘Oh, even when you get out of New York and Los Angeles, when you go to other cities, the local scene isn't going to be as good.’ But it's not the case. The scene and Cleveland comedians are just as strong, and it's great.”
The event kicks off at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, with an open red-carpet walk prior to the festivities. Tickets are still available — purchase VIP passes for a free T-shirt courtesy of CLE Clothing Co.
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