Monday, November 26, 2012

The Mikes are coming to Sacramento Comedy Spot this Friday night, 11/30!

The comedy troupe known as The Mikes, made up of five Sacramento stand-up stars that are all named Mike, will make their official debut at the Sacramento Comedy Spot on Friday, November 30th, at 9:00 PM.

The roster includes comics Mike Betancourt, Michael Calvin Jr., Michael O’Connell, Mike Osborn and Mike Sinclair, all seasoned comedians whose faces are well-known in the Sacramento comedy world and beyond.

The group was assembled by Michael O’Connell, who realized one day that there were quite a few Mikes doing comedy in Sacramento - and all of them were very, very funny.  More than that, they were each funny in their own unique way.  Putting all of them together in one comedy show, he realized, would provide a wonderful diversity of comedic styles and a hysterical experience for audiences.

“I’d worked with all these guys and loved their stuff,” O’Connell says.  “They’re some of my favorite guys in comedy.  I can’t believe it took me so long to think of all of us joining forces.  Kind of like the Avengers.  Or Damn Yankees.  But, you know, with jokes.”

Their inaugural show at the Comedy Spot is planned to be the first of many upcoming appearances in California and elsewhere for this new and exciting comedy tour.

Mike Betancourt, a hard-traveled comedy headliner, is known to his many fans for his intense, energetic and animated style, and these fans sometimes end up with him standing on their table during his shows.   Unpredictable and cloaked in mayhem, he’s rocked clubs and colleges up and down the west coast with his twisted tales and explosive antics, and has worked with such big comedy names as Jim Bruer, Ralphie May and Dat Phan.

Michael Calvin Jr. has been tearing up comedy stages all over northern California since 2006.  His magnetic personality and wild, fun stage presence make new fans for him wherever he goes, from Sacramento to San Francisco to Fairfield to Modesto to Reno.  His love of comedy is infectious, and his dedication to it so strong that he was even married on Good Day Sacramento’s Valentine’s Day Show at Laughs Unlimited.

“Wheelchair comedian” Michael O’Connell has turned a lifetime of disability into a career in comedy, delighting audiences from Seattle to L.A. with his laid-back, dry style and tales of his life experiences as a man on wheels.  He co-founded the all-disabled comedy troupe called The Comedians with Disabilities Act and tours with both them and the Mikes.  He’s appeared on such famed stages as the Laugh Factory in Hollywood and the L.A. Improv, and counts several celebrities among his fans.

A cast member on Mark at the Movies and a recurring performer on Good Day Sacramento, Mike Obsorn is a sought-after emcee, speaker and, of course, comedian.  He’s hosted hundreds of events ranging from comedy shows to charity fundraisers to West Sacramento’s Trucktoberfest.  His sharp, observational, tongue-in-cheek writing coupled with his natural charm and easy style make him irresistible to audiences.

With one foot in L.A. and the other in Sacramento, Mike Sinclair is the epitome of comedy hustle, appearing in clubs, hosting rooms and lighting up competitions on both sides of the state.  The long-time host of the Grown & Sexy Comedy Show at Sacramento’s A Touch A’ Class nightclub, his smooth style and hilariously frank humor have made him a favorite of both audiences and fellow comics.  From the Comedy Store in L.A. to Tommy T’s in Sacramento, Sinclair gets it done, and gets it done right.

Tickets for The Mikes show are $12.00, and are available for pre-sale the Sacramento Comedy Spot’s web site (  This performance is for audiences 18 and older only.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Watch the Comedians with Disabilities Act on Laugh Factory Live on your PS3!

The Comedians with Disabilities Act just had a fantastic time performing at the Laugh Factory in Hollywood Tuesday night.  If you weren't in the LA area and couldn't make it...and if you own a still have the chance to watch the whole 90 minute show.

There's a new app for the PS3 called Laugh Factory Live.  It's free right now, and through the end of this month, and thereafter will cost a subscription of $2.99 per month (so now's the time to try it out while it costs you $0.00).  It allows you to not only watch streaming Laugh Factory stand-up shows as they happen (as happened with our show), but they also have an archive of on demand comedy video, where you can watch hundreds of hours of material, including our November 13th performance.

Here's what you do to check this out if you have a PS3.

1)  Turn on your PS3.  It makes the steps that follow much more enjoyable.

2)  Scroll over to the TV/Video Services item on your main menu and click on the "My Channels" icon.

3)  From there, scroll down through the services available until you see the Laugh Factory logo.  Click on that!  Alternatively to all this, you can find the app in the Playstation Store under the "Media & Apps" category.

4)  Follow the steps to download and install the app.

5)  Sign in to it, and on the first menu, choose "Comedy On Demand".

6)  Find and click on "Laugh Factory UNCUT".

7)  From there, find and click on "Comedians with Disabilities".

Hope you enjoy.  This show was particularly special because of our guest headliner, Geri Jewell, who completely rocked the place.  Feel free to pass this information on to your other PS3 pals.  Not only can they watch US (which is the most important thing, right?), but can dive into massive pile of amazing Laugh Factory comedy from some of the biggest names in the business.  If they can stop playing Call of Duty long enough.

Learn more about Laugh Factory Live HERE and HERE

Friday, September 28, 2012

The Comedians with Disabilities Act returns to Hollywood - with comedy legend Geri Jewell!

The Comedians with Disabilities Act is returning to the Laugh Factory in Hollywood, and they're bringing some star power with them: special guest and disabled comedy pioneer Geri Jewell.

The heralded disabled comedian troupe will be performing on Tuesday, November 13th, at 8:00 PM, in a benefit show for L.A. City College's Office of Special Services.  Regulars Steve Danner, Nina G, Eric Mee and Michael O'Connell will be joined by Jewell for a night of differently-abled laughter to raise monies for programs that benefit LACC disabled students.

Comedian/actress/author/speaker/trainer Geri Jewell is best remembered as Cousin Geri on the 80s sitcom The Facts of Life, where she became the first disabled person to have a regular role on a television series.  She went on to appear in such shows as 21 Jump Street, The Young and the Restless, and as a regular on the hit HBO series Deadwood.  But she began her career in comedy, which is her first love, and has been seen on many cable comedy shows like A&E's Evening at the Improv and VH1's Stand Up Spotlight over the years.  These days, when not acting or performing, Geri is in high demand as a motivational speaker and diversity consultant for Fortune 500 companies and the US government.  She has also written her autobiography, "I'm Walking as Straight as I Can", detailing her life living with cerebral palsy and overcoming disability barriers in Hollywood and beyond.

The Comedians with Disabilities Act formed when four northern California comics, all with different disabilities, decided to team up to create a unique, hilarious and unforgettable comedy tour.  Eric Mee is the visually impaired comic.  Steve Danner is a little person.  Michael O'Connell has Muscular Dystrophy and is in a wheelchair.  And Nina G is a comedienne who stutters.  They've performed at comedy clubs and college campuses all over California, and are now returning to the Laugh Factory to follow up their first blockbuster performance there in 2011.

Monies raised will be going to L.A. City College's Office of Special Services, and audience members are promised a night of "accessible" comedy like they've never experienced.  The Sunset Strip is about to get "special".

The Laugh Factory
8001 W Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90046
(323) 656-1336

Saturday, September 1, 2012

The Sacramento Comedy Festival - 9/7/12 - 9/15/12!

9 days!  25 shows!  120+ performers!  The second annual Sacramento Comedy Festival is about to descend on the capital city with a vengeance!  Well...with a fun and whimsical vengeance...

Last year, Brian Crall--owner of the Sacramento Comedy Spot--brought the dream of Sacramento having its own comedy festival to life.  This year, it's back and bigger than ever, with an amazing assemblage of comedy shows, ranging from improv to sketch comedy to variety shows to game shows to stand-up, bringing together performers from L.A., Denver, the Bay Area, and right here in Sactown.  Shows will take place at both the Sacramento Comedy Spot and Luna's Cafe, and will be happening every night of the festival.

Improv comedy shows will include such teams as Anti-Cooperation League, The Neighbor's Kids, Awkward Face, Lady Business, Lipstick Librarian, Bro Squad 5 and Comedy Sportz Sacramento, as well as the popular In Your Facebook show that uses the Facebook pages of audience members as improv fuel for the performers.  Sketch comedy will come from The Syndicate, Comedy Space (presented by creator Ray Molina), and Critical Hit (the geek-centered comedy show, created and hosted by Nick Pettigrew).  The Comedy Show will be a variety show that will be taped for a web series, and will include special guest Charlotte Stewart (Little House on the Prairie). The Sacramento Comedy Spot's own weekly podcast/game show, The Top 10 List Podcast, will be taping two live shows during the festival, and I Challenge You will have audience contestants competing in trivia and funny physical challenges.  The late night Dirty Comedy Show will not be for the faint of heart.  Special guests to the festival will include Jeff Sloniker (Reno 911, Parks and Recreation) and Betsy Sodaro (Animal Practice).  Musical guests will include Dog Party and Picard Maneuver.

A dazzling array of local and visiting stand-up comics will be performing in multiple comedy shows, including Johnny Taylor, Michael O’Connell, Priya Prasad, Andrew Holmgren, Des Henderson, Keith Lowell Jensen, Matt Gubser, Kristen Frisk, Cheryl the Soccer Mom, Shane Murphy, Chazz Hawkins, John Ross, Dejan Tyler, Matt Raymond, Jessica Wellington, Jaime Fernandez, Giuliana-Vita Gabrielli, Stephen Furey, Derik Bishop, Ngaio Bealum, Joe Klocek, Kurt Weitzmann, Sandra Risser, Queenie TT, Brent Gill, Carlos Rodriguez, Daniel Humbarger, Rich Slaton, Kiry Shabazz, and more!

Tickets are available now for purchase online, either for individual shows (ranging from $5.00 to $12.00) or the all-encompassing Unlimited Festival Pass ($55.00) that will let you see any and every show of the Festival.  Beer is served at both the Sacramento Comedy Spot and Luna's Cafe.  No minimum is required.

Click the logo below to go to for a full schedule of events, performer list, event info and to purchase tickets.

Read the article on the Festival in Submerge Magazine here.

There are shows and comedians for all tastes, so come on out, join the fun and help put Sacramento comedy on the map!

Michael O'Connell will be performing in Stand-Up Extravaganza #1 at the Sacramento Comedy Spot on Friday, 9/7, at 10:30 PM.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Ready to try comedy? Here's how.

You ever dreamed about getting up on stage and giving stand-up comedy a try?  Did not knowing how to start hold you back?  Problem solved!

Over on my Tumblr page, I wrote a really big six-part series called "So You're Ready To Try Comedy".  It's written for the person who's never tried stand-up before, and it walks you through all the steps, from how to write a joke to how to find an open mic room to how to get up there and finally strut your stuff.  It's written from my perspective, based on my experience getting started and what I've learned along the way in the world of comedy.  All you'll need to know (or at least most of it), all for free.  What a deal!

So if you're done with the "Do I have what it takes?" question and ready to get your start, I hope what I have to say on the matter is helpful for you.  It all starts right HERE with part one.  Jump on in, and good luck!

Monday, August 13, 2012

Smokin' & Jokin' Returns!

After a bit of a break, Smokin' & Jokin', the original cigar lounge comedy show, is returning to Tobacco Road in Sacramento on Friday, August 24th, at 8:00 PM.

The return of this show also marks the return of comedian Jason Resler, now the first comic to make two appearances at S&J.  Fans enjoyed him that much the first time around.  So I'm bringing him back for more, and hopefully drawing some of those never-been-to-a-cigar-lounge Resler fans in.  Jason's been on the road touring a lot, so getting him back in Sac is a rare treat.  We're taking full advantage of this brief window before he's right back on the highway.

As always, Smokin' & Jokin' is a two-headliner show, and I've been dying to fit in comic #2 for some time.  It's none other than Steve Danner, one of my partners in the Comedians with Disabilities Act comedy troupe.  Steve has rocked rooms from the Punch Line in San Francisco to the Laugh Factory in Hollywood, and I can't wait to see what he can do with my favorite cigar lounge.

I will be your host, and look forward to lighting up and laughing-out-loud with all of you, so please, join the fun!  Tickets are on sale at the door, and cost $10.00.  Early arrival is highly recommended as seating in the place is limited (early arrival is the difference between getting a plush leather seat and getting a plastic chair).  Advance notice: cigar and pipe smoking only is allowed in Tobacco Road - no cigarettes.  If you're a cigarette smoker, you can just step outside and come right back in after.  No worries. 

Let us smoke!  And joke!

Tobacco Road
2912 Pasatiempo Lane
Sacramento, CA 95821
916 489 4590

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Michael O'Connell Does Comedy at The Place - Sunday, July 29th

Coming up on Sunday, July 29th, I'll be teaming up with some of my favorite comics to do the inaugural show for Comedy Night at The Place, where an evening of laughs will erupt in one of Roseville's hottest hot spots.

Put on by Sam Bruno Entertainment, the show will be hosted by Sam Bruno himself, and will feature me, D.S. Davie and Jason Armenio. I've been fortunate enough to work with all of these guys, but never all in the same show!  You're going to love their stuff as much as I do.  And we're going to be keeping it clean, so if you're offended by the raunchy stuff, we got your back.

The Place
is an Italian restaurant and bar in downtown Roseville, and is probably my favorite eatery in town.  Owners (chef) Mike and (pastry chef) Moneka McDermott have created a relaxed, intimate and classy atmosphere where you're made to feel right at home.  And the food!  You got-a pizza, you got-a pasta, you got-a panini!  Loads of great eats.  The kitchen will be closing for the comedy show, however, so if dinner is on your mind, I'd say show up an hour or two earlier than the shows 7:00 PM start time.  But cocktails will be flowing at the bar, and you will need to buy two of them!  No tickets to buy for this show, but yeah, your standard two-drink minimum.  Such a small price to pay for such amazing-a comedy!

Come on down and check us out, why don'tcha?  All the magic will be happening here:

The Place
221 Vernon St
Roseville, CA 95678
(916) 742-5447

It's looking like this show may be pretty packed, so I would advise early arrival to guarantee seating.  We'll see you there!

Saturday, March 10, 2012

Back in Sac: The Comedians with Disabilities Act returns to Sacramento Friday, May 4th!

On November 26th, 2010, the Comedians with Disabilities Act had its first ever performance, debuting to a sold-out audience at the Sacramento Comedy Spot.  On the day after Thanksgiving, no less.

Brought together by comedian/producer Keith Lowell Jensen, the group, at that time, consisted of Michael O'Connell, Steve Danner and Eric Mee.  Based on the success of that first show, the group was booked at the heralded San Francisco Punch Line soon after, and were joined by a guest-set performer named Nina G.  Nina was immediately recognized as the element that no one had even realized was missing and was added to the tour, completing the foursome that began playing clubs, theaters and college campuses across California together.

Finally, on Friday night, May 4, 2012, the Comedians with Disabilities Act will finally be returning to the place where it all began, performing a one-night only show at the Comedy Spot at 9:00 PM.  Returning, also, will be Keith Lowell Jensen, who will be hosting the festivities.  In addition, the show will feature a special guest performance by San Francisco comic Steve Lee, another disabled performer.  All the members of the Act have high hopes that, as long as they're repeating history, that the sellout part will repeat again as well.

Advance tickets are available for purchase on the Comedy Spot's web site, and early buying is strongly recommended based on the demand for this tour.  Tickets are $15 and can be ordered here:

The venue is roughly at 20th and J Street in midtown Sacramento:

Sacramento Comedy Spot
1050 20th St. Ste 130
Sacramento, CA
916 444 3137

Don't miss out on California's favorite differently-abled comedians in their homecoming show!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

The Comedians with Disabilities Act coming to Red Bluff and Oakland!

For the first time since their triumphant and much-heralded blockbuster show at the Laugh Factory in Hollywood, the Comedians with Disabilities Act comedy tour is back on the road and headed for Red Bluff and Oakland!

Everyone's favorite differently-abled comics will be hitting the State Theatre in Red Bluff, California, on Saturday night, February 11th, for a big to-do brought to you by Z-NIRP Productions, bringing the funny to the peoples of the great Cal north.  The show starts at 7:30 PM.  Tickets are $20 at the door, but discount tickets are available now at Red Bluff Grocery Outlet and Sky River Music.  Don't miss this chance to see their "special" brand of comedy and find out why the San Francisco Examiner called them "The most unconventional comics to pop up in 2011".

Read all about it in After Five Magazine here.

The State Theatre
333 Oak Street
Red Bluff, CA 96080
530 529 2787

If you miss this chance, you've got another shot to see the gang AND support a good cause when the troupe hits Comedy Off Broadway Oakland on Thursday, May 31st, in a show to benefit Yo! Disabled and Proud, a program organizing youth with disabilities to take pride in their identity, learn about disability heritage and promote advocacy.  Joining the Comedians with Disabilities Act will be special guests Leroy Moore (rapper/poet) and comedienne/author Queenie TT.   The show begins at 8:00 PM.  Tickets are $10 ($8 for students/seniors/peace officers) and can be purchased at the show or early by going here

Comedy Off Broadway Oakland
Miss Pearl's Jam House (at The Waterfront Hotel)
1 Broadway (at Jack London Sqaure), Oakland, CA
510 214 2626

Stay tuned for more news of upcoming dates for the Comedians with Disabilities Act tour to be announced soon!