Last month, a sell-out crowd at the Harbor View’s Water Street restaurant enjoyed an hour and a half of the best kind of winter doldrums’ antidote — an evening of outrageous comedy by a trio of stand-up comics from Boston.
This weekend, the hotel will again be transformed into a club and host what should prove to be a very funny, though very different, night of comedy.
While the bill last time around was made up of comics with a Boston comedian profile and attitude (white males with a working class bent who tended toward the loud, off-color, and irreverent), for this weekend’s show the Harbor View has recruited three comics with vastly different styles.
Comedy nights are a new venture for the Harbor View Hotel and Resort. “We’re trying to come up with some special events that will attract people to the hotel in the off season,” said Elizabeth Rothwell,director of marketing and events. “At this time of year, when there’s not a lot going on, we’re trying to think outside the box and get a little creative in coming up with our own entertainment.”
As with the first comedy night, the Harbor View will rent small tables, put up a curtain backdrop and small stage, and bring on a professional tech team to give the restaurant an intimate, cabaret feel.
The comedians are all provided through an arrangement with Dick Doherty’s Beantown Comedy. Mr. Doherty, himself a longtime stand-up comic, presents national and local headliners at his three Boston-area clubs, and he has also introduced some up-and-coming national stars to area audiences.
Of the three comics appearing this weekend, Boston-born Danny Kelly is the most seasoned. He has been a regular at high-profile comedy clubs in New York and Los Angeles since the 90s. A high-energy comic, Mr. Kelly takes audiences on a walk from the 80s through today.The established comedian has opened for Andrew “Dice” Clay and Howie Mandel, among others. Not relying totally on shock comedy, his outrageous zingers tend to sneak up on the audience, and he has a fondness for audience banter.
Greg Howell is among the few black comedians making a name on the Boston comedy circuit today. With his deep bass voice, he takes on race relations, sex, and more with an unexpected combination of playfulness, street sensibility, and blue humor.
The daughter of a small-town minister, Carolyn Plummer has the low-key, self-effacing style of a female Richard Wright, but she doesn’t hesitate to take potshots at the people in her life. Like Mr. Wright, Ms. Plummer mines the mundane for her material, and she puts her own unique spin on life with a droll, deadpan delivery.
The Harbor View kicked off its winter entertainment line-up with a sold-out New Year’s Eve bash. If the second comedy night proves as successful as the first (and tickets have already been sold without any advance publicity), the hotel will continue the off-season series and, possibly, add music and other nightclub acts.
The entertainment initiative will extend to the Harbor View’s sister establishment, The Kelly House and The Newes From America pub in downtown Edgartown where a St. Patrick’s Day weekend celebration is planned for next month.
Tickets are on sale now for a performance on Saturday, March 3 by singer Jill Zadeh at the Harbor View Hotel and Resort. Ms. Zadeh, a backup singer for Janet Jackson, Joss Stone, Lindsay Lohan, and others, will perform jazz standards, original tunes, and classics by divas – both legendary and contemporary. She will be backed by a three piece band. Tickets are $20 in advance or $25 at the door, and can be purchased at the Harbor View or can be reserved by calling 508-627-7000.
Comedy Night, Friday, Feb. 24, 9 pm (doors open at 8:30 pm), Harbor View Hotel, Edgartown. at the Harbor View Hotel, Friday, February 24. Drinks and a light bar menu offered. 21+. For more information and tickets: harbor-view.com; 508-627-7000.
Gwyn McAllister of Oak Bluffs is a regular contributor to The Times.