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Top Improv Comedy In Philadelphia

The beauty of improv comedy is that if you find a place you enjoy, you can go again and again, since it's never the same show twice. Most improv places in Philly are inexpensive, around the price of a movie ticket or just a bit more ($5-$20), and the shows are about an hour and a half, so you can go out and enjoy yourself even if you have limited time. There are only a few places in Philly for improv, but all of them hand out hilarity, so you can't pick wrong.

Comedy Sports
The Playground at the Adrienne
2030 Samson St.
Philadelphia, PA 19103
(877) 985-2844

At Comedy Sports, there are two teams competing for laughs, and it's up to you to decide the winner. This laugh box exerciser of a show has been around for over 20 years and is one of the top comedy shows in Philly. The show is 90 minutes of good, clean fun for the whole family. The audience can participate by shouting out answers when questions are posed then voting for whichever team they prefer. Comedy Sports is also BYOB, but it can provide the cups. This is a small venue with seating for about 60, so you may want to order your tickets in advance so they aren't sold out.

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Helium Comedy Club
2031 Samson St.
Philadelphia, PA 19103
(215) 496-9001

Comedy shows at Helium feature local and headlining comedians and open mic nights, which brings in a variety of talents and improv groups. Shows run from 90 minutes to an hour and 45 minutes and are set in a cabaret-styled theater. There is a two-item minimum requirement, which can include soda and an appetizer, but those items have to be ordered during the performance to count. Helium has a variety of different events that are always changing. Typically, open mic nights are the least expensive and are held on Tuesday evenings at 7:30 p.m. for $5. Parking is available at a few local garages.

The N Crowd
The Actor's Center
257 N. Third St.
Philadelphia, PA 19106
(215) 253-4276

The N Crowd was founded in 2005 and has been keeping Philadelphians laughing since. You can check out performances every Friday night. Patrons have enjoyed the 80 minutes of unscripted comedy from professionals and have found it not abrasive and family friendly. The Actor's Center is a small theater of about six rows and the troupe seems to get the crowd involved with games, similar to the popular "Whose Line is it Anyway." The more the crowd participates, the more fun the show.

Philly Improv Theater
Adrienne Theater
2030 Samson St.
Philadelphia, PA 19103
(267) 233-1556

Philly Improv Theater is a favorite amongst regular patrons of comedy. Philly Improv is a non-profit group that is sharing space in the Adrienne Theater and looking to build their own home. You can also take classes on different styles of comedy, whether it's improv, stand-up or sketch comedy. There are several different shows in the evenings during the week (except for Mondays and Tuesdays). This is an intimate theater, so be prepared to be a part of the action. If you are interested in taking a class but aren't completely sure about it, you can take a free improv class to see if it suits you.

Sarcasm Comedy Club
Upstairs of Tavern on the Lake
101 N. Main St.
Hightstown, NJ 08056

The setup here is the opposite of the aforementioned clubs, and some may even find the large hall with banquet-style tables as distracting. But the comedy itself is excellent. Tavern on the Lake has its own dining and beverages and regularly has live music, too. The Sarcasm Comedy Club is a great choice for people on the NJ side of the bridge.

Related: Top Karaoke Bars in Philadelphia

Christina Dagnelli is a freelance writer in Philadelphia and the author of Little Squares with Colors: A Different way to look at autism. Her work on examiner can be found here

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