The Best Comedy Clubs in Las Vegas
Laughter is medicine, and the current world definitely needs a prescription for more comedy clubs to get through these endless “unprecedented times” lately. Vegas is a live entertainment hub, and comedy clubs are no exception. We talked with Don Barnhart, the resident comedian at Delirious Comedy Club, about laughs during COVID-19. Read all about it below, along with four more great comedy clubs to visit in Las Vegas.
Comedy During COVID-19
Despite only being open for about a year, Delirious Comedy Club has established itself as a downtown destination for fun and entertainment. The showroom is located in the Downtown Grand, with a bar in the back for drinks, and features comedy, magic, and hybrid comedy-magic shows. Reservations and paperless tickets are available online, and all visitors are temperature-checked at the door. Unvaccinated guests are required to wear a mask for the show’s duration. With plenty of new restrictions in place at the club and around town, we asked Barnhart about the changes and what he hopes to see in the future as Las Vegas rolls forward.
WT: Can you tell us about the new safety protocols?
Barnhart: One of the protocols in place for Delirious Comedy Club is that we still require masks unless you’re actively drinking. We want a safe environment for everyone involved, and the only way to do it is to be proactive and keep taking precautions. We’ve reduced our occupancy so we can still socially distance our audiences. Prior to every show, we take extra steps by cleaning and sanitizing the room, tables and chairs. We also do this between shows and sanitize the mics, mic-stands and other common surfaces. It does take extra time, but we feel that it’s vital to create an atmosphere of safety for our customers, staff and comedians.
WT: Has your routine added or changed anything related to Covid?
Barnhart: As for our comedians, masks are required until you’re onstage. It’s just part of the gig nowadays and with the audience masked up, it can seem a little odd at first not being able to see smiles or the audience laughing, but it’s still worth it knowing you made someone laugh. We use humor to lighten it up for both the comic and the audience. We make a pre-show announcement prior to the show but lighten the mood by adding, “mask up or flask up.”
WT: What do you think is the most important aspect of comedy in these troubling times?
Barnhart: Laughter is such a vital component of our lives in that it releases stress and lets us confront the issues that trouble us with a sense of humor that can often lift the burden, making difficult times much more palatable. They say that laughter is the best medicine, and it’s true now more than ever. It can be a great tool in both our emotional, mental and physical health.
WT: Has audience interaction changed? What has been the audience’s response to changes that have been made?
Barnhart: We’ve been surprised at the support and understanding of our audiences. Nobody ‘likes’ the conditions but the importance of being able to go out, socialize and share in the experience of live comedy shows supersedes the conditions in which we have to do them in. Every night, we have customers telling us how thankful they are that we are open and able to bring a sense of normality to their lives and how much they’ve needed to laugh. We’re getting busier each day, and as one of the first shows to reopen since the start of the pandemic— we just celebrated our 500th show, and Mayor Goodman proclaimed, Delirious Comedy Club Day in Las Vegas and to say thank you to our fans, we offered complimentary admission and had an amazing turnout.
WT: What would you like to see for the future of comedy as we emerge from the pandemic?
Barnhart: Moving forward, it would be great to see packed houses with standing room only crowds, to see audience members high fiving each other, shaking hands and giving hugs, but until then, we’ll do what needs to be done in order to keep the laughter rolling.
Four More Great Comedy Clubs in Las Vegas
With live performances back as we navigate the new normal, checking out a stand-up act is a great way to spend a night out on the town. Comedy clubs are typically intimate spaces with limited capacity, so it is highly recommended to get tickets in advance and expect to wear a mask.
Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club
This funny man knows a bit about comedy. He won three Emmys, and a SAG award for the role of Robert Barone on “Everybody Loves Raymond;” his voice has been heard in more than 30 animated features. The man who opened for Frank Sinatra and Sammy Davis, Jr. in the late ’80s now has his own custom-built comedy club at the MGM Grand Las Vegas, where he features both established stand-up stars and the hottest young comics in the business. Plus, Brad Garrett’s Comedy Club is the only place you can see Garrett himself perform when he’s in town.
Kick back, grab a drink and prepare to be wowed at this laid-back comedy club on the second floor of the Tropicana. The offerings at the Laugh Factory are varied and plentiful, from comedians you’ve seen in the movies to those who still have to make a name for themselves. You can trust your entertainment dollars to this world-famous club, which started on the Sunset Strip in Hollywood.
Tucked into the Rio All-Suites Hotel & Casino, Comedy Cellar Las Vegas is a replica of their famous NYC location and features many of the same performers. Unlike other clubs with shorter opening acts to start, followed by a more extended headliner performance, the Comedy Cellar model features multiple headliners doing shorter sets of their best bits. VIP seating and local discounts are available.
L.A. Comedy Club
L.A. Comedy Club has been operating in Vegas since 2007 and is currently located in the Dragon Theater at The STRAT Hotel, Casino & Skypod. With three daily shows, this is easily the busiest comedy venue in town, featuring a packed schedule of regular local performers, featured touring acts, and their popular Redneck Comedy Show. They recently announced an upcoming residency with America’s Got Talent champion Samuel J. Conroe, to start in the summer of 2022. Ticket options include general admission, VIP seating, and an all-you-can-drink package.