Alternative Comedy Fest allows comics to spread wings

Francis Ma

Thanks to the tenacity of a select group of comedians, elements of vaudeville are creeping back into the comedy business. But don’t freak out when you hear the word “vaudeville” — this isn’t a man with trained dogs, or some guy spinning pie plates. This is the cutting edge of comedy.

 It’s all about the venue. Instead of a dark comedy club with a two-drink minimum, cocktail waitresses and the occasional drunken heckler, comedians are going to theaters and rock clubs. Some comedians are even returning to opening for bands.