The Paname Art Café, 14 rue de la Fontaine au Roi 75011
Just a short walk from République and the Canal Saint Martin in the East of town, The Paname Art Café has established itself in the last few years as one of the best places to see up and coming stand up comedy. The ground floor is a bar and restaurant serving traditional French fare and eastern influenced dishes, and downstairs you’ll find a stone walled room with a small stage and a mic where the shows take place. The venue is intimate, comfortable and there’s always a great atmosphere. French Fried TV runs a one hour show there every Tuesday at 9:15pm, The French Fried Comedy Night. You can follow French Fried on Facebook and Twitter. Admittance is free when you buy a drink (5€), and you’re encouraged to throw a little money in the hat at the end of the show.
The SoGymnase, 38 Boulevard de la Bonne Nouvelle 75010:
Tucked up on the fourth floor of the historic Théâtre du Gymnase, this comedy attic is the hidden gem in the English comedy scene as it plays host to no less than three different shows for anglo audiences. There is a bar serving bottled beers, wine and cocktails, and you can grab a bite in the restaurant on the second floor. Friday at 9:30pm is the New York Comedy Night, a showcase hosted by New Yorker Sebastian Marx: multiple comics perform 7-8 minute sets during this show, some are native english speakers, some less so, and they frequently have visiting comics from all over the world. Follow the NYCN on Facebook and Twitter. Saturday night at 9:30pm is The Great British American Comedy Night, and as the name suggests, this show only features native english speakers from the US & the UK. Fewer acts per show means longer sets from each of them. The GBACN (as it is known) is also on Facebook & Twitter. In addition to these two regular shows, The Melting Pot Comedy Night is Paris’s original English language Open Mic. It’s run by Sebastian Marx and usually happens once a month, so check here if you want to keep up to date with it. Or get in touch with Sebastian Marx if you want to perform.
La Nouvelle Seine, 3 Quai de Montebello 75005:
Down by the Seine, the most central of all the comedy clubs in Paris is actually a boat. This typical french “péniche” is moored right by Notre-Dame and holds a bar, a restaurant, and more importantly, a 200 seat auditorium. Particularly nice when the sun comes out, the restaurant serves a constantly changing menu of traditional and more exotic items, and also does brunches at the weekend. Here Sebastian Marx (him again!) performs his one hour show in English, A New Yorker In Paris, on Sunday evenings at 6:00pm. You can follow him here.
Carr’s, 1 Rue du Mont Thabor 75001 :
In a little side street right next to the Tuileries lies Carr’s Irish Pub and restaurant, an expat institution that has been around since the 19th century. This is not where you go for a quick bar snack or a burger, but a proper sit down meal of franco-Irish cuisine. There’s Guinness and more, someone tinkles at the piano most every night, and on Wednesday nights is Carrsambar, a slightly different kind of comedy night. It’s what comics call a “safe place”, where they come to try out new material and iron out the kinks, without the pressure of working in front of a paying audience. You might see absolute beginners, just as easily as regulars on the scene, so it makes for an interesting “alternative” show. And guess what? They’re on Facebook.
Belushi’s Canal, 159 Rue de Crimée 75019:
As the name suggests, on the Canal in the North East of town lies the hectic mayhem of Belushi’s Canal. The formula is the same as in every other Belushi’s in Europe, so if you’ve seen one, you’ve seen them all. The drinks are cheap and the atmosphere is cheerful, there’s a comprehensive menu of burgers and the like to choose from and the big screens show every conceivable game you can think of. And once a month on a Monday night, there’s a comedy night that costs 5€ to get into. It’s not always clear what Monday the show is on, so best to get your info straight from Belushi’s Facebook page…