The High Plains Comedy Festival hosted by truTV is a less than a week away, and with the release of the full line-up and schedule, you’ll want to make sure you don’t miss out on some of the best talent the festival has to offer. From large headliners like T.J. Miller and Todd Glass, to local Denver favorites Adam Cayton-Holland and Sam Tallent, the High Plains Comedy Festival has it all. Here are some of the comedians and troupes you should probably catch around Denver Thursday, August 24 through Sunday, August 26.
To purchase tickets or see the full schedule, visit the High Plains Comedy Festival website.
1. T.J. Miller
Where to See Him: Paramount Theatre during High Plains Headliner Show with T.J. Miller @ 8 p.m. on Saturday, August 26.
The Lowdown: Famous in the comedy world, T.J. Miller is the headlining act at High Plains Comedy Festival and we’re excited to witness his manic persona take the stage. Known for his absurdity, cutting humor and firecracker presentation, Miller is a spectacle to see where you won’t quite know what to expect. But it’s likely you’ll leave genuinely thrilled at his performance. In addition to stand-up, Miller has a lengthy filmography including movies such as Disney’s Big Hero 6, Deadpool, Cloverfield, She’s Out of My League, Get Him to the Greek, How to Train Your Dragon and the upcoming movies Ready Player One. You can also catch Miller in the TV show Silicon Valley and frequently spotted on Comedy Central. Miller is definitely the comedic dynamo you don’t want to miss.
2. Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark (My Favorite Murder)
Where to See Them: Paramount Theatre @ 8 p.m. on Friday, August 25 and the Boulder Theater @ 8 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. You can also check out Kilgariff at the show Entertaining Julia at the Hi-Dive @ 10 p.m. on Friday, August 25.
The Lowdown: If you haven’t listed to the podcast My Favorite Murder, you’re in for a real treat if you scored tickets to the show starring Karen Kilgariff and Georgia Hardstark at the Boulder Theater or the Paramount Theatre. Kilgariff and Hardstark will offer their own spin on dark humor since both ladies have an affinity for the macabre. Each episode of My Favorite Murder features the telling of a murder by Kilgariff and Hardstark in addition to hearing hometown crime stories from friends and fans. At High Plains, you’ll get to watch them do it all live.
3. Todd Glass
Where to See Him: 3 Kings Tavern during Arguments & Grievances @ 9 p.m. on Thursday, August 24. 3 Kings Tavern during Todd Glass & Friends @ 9 p.m. on Friday, August 25. 3 Kings Tavern during Reunited! @ 6 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. *Subject to change.
The Lowdown: As a legendary comic, Todd Glass has been doing stand-up for a while. You won’t see a censored show when he takes the stage due to his witticisms and satire. Recognized for his unique delivery, Glass is a surefire crowd-pleaser and it’s no wonder he has toured with many famous comedians of the same caliber such as Louis C.K., David Spade and Daniel Tosh. Some of Glass’ television appearances include The Daily Show, Louie, Jimmy Kimmel, The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Tosh.0, Married…with Children, Home Improvement and Conan O’Brien. Glass also famously runs his own podcast entitled The Todd Glass Show, where he and his friends tell jokes, and for which his show at High Plains will imitate.
4. Rory Scovel
Where to See Him: 3 Kings Tavern during Those Who Can’t Live Table Read @ 4 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. 3 Kings Tavern during Rory Scovel Tries Stand-Up for the Second Time @ 8 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. *Subject to change.
The Lowdown: Get ready for some big laughs if you see Rory Scovel at High Plains. When Scovel leaves the stage, the audience is exhausted from laughter and it’s a no-brainer as to why. As a firm believer of jokes that “go too far,” Scovel is ready to make you feel slightly uncomfortable for laughing too hard at touchy subjects that he doesn’t feel are off limits. Scovel can most recently be seen in the movies The House and The Legacy of a Whitetail Deer Hunter, while some of his television appearances include Modern Family, Ground Floor, Undateable, The Comedians and truTV’s original series Those Who Can’t. His new hour-long stand-up special is also now on Netflix.
5. The Puterbaugh Sisters
Where to See Them: 3 Kings Tavern during Arguments & Grievances @ 9 p.m. on Thursday, August 24. Hi-Dive during Entertaining Julia @ 10 p.m. on Friday, August 25. Mutiny Information Cafe during Bounty on the Mutiny @ 7 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. *Subject to change.
The Lowdown: The Puterbaugh Sisters, Tiffany and Danielle Puterbaugh, aren’t afraid of silliness. Originally from Chicago and now in LA, this sister duo act has spent a lot of time developing their own alternative comedy and are famously known for their show Entertaining Julia, a sketch, improv and stand-up show, which sparked through every dive bar in Chicago for eight years. Be prepared for a wild ride with this sassy sister act that’s sure to entertain you.
6. Maria Thayer
The Lowdown: Originally from Oregon, Maria Thayer studied performing arts at Julliard and has been on the stage ever since. Recognized mostly for her portrayal of Tammi Littlenut on the show Strangers With Candy from the early 2000s, Thayer is a red-haired, energetic personality with witty humor and talent. Thayer also stars in Those Who Can’t on truTV as Abbey Logan and joins the High Plains Comedy Festival as a special guest for a live table read of an episode. You might also recognize her from supporting roles in Hitch, Accepted and Forgetting Sarah Marshall.
7. Sam Tallent
Where to See Him: 3 Kings Tavern during Arguments & Grievances @ 9 p.m. on Thursday, August 24. 3 Kings Tavern during The Fine Gentleman’s Club—Reunited! @ 11 p.m. on Friday, August 25. Hi-Dive during Late Late Breakfast @ 3 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. *Subject to change.
The Lowdown: Originally from Denver, Sam Tallent is a regular headliner at Comedy Works but now lives in Las Vegas. Known for whip-quick wit and rollicking improvisations, Tallent has famously worked alongside big names in comedy, including Louis C.K., Dave Chappelle, Dana Carvey and T.J. Miller. He is definitely underrated in the comedy world and we’re excited he’s come back to rep the Mile High City.
8. Janae Burris
Where to See Her: Paramount Theatre during High Plains Headliner Show with T.J. Miller @ 8 p.m. on Saturday, August 26.
The Lowdown: This year Janae Burris beat out almost 200 of Colorado’s funniest comics to be crowned Comedy Works New Faces Champion, and after watching her stand-up, it’s no surprise as to why. Burris effortlessly earns laughs with her often loud, uncensored jokes and definitely knows how to get a crowd rolling. She is a frequent regular at Comedy Works and has opened for comedians including SNL‘s Leslie Jones, Jay Pharaoh and Josh Blue. Locally, Burris runs monthly shows with and is a member of the comedy group the Pussy Bros.
9. Christie Buchele
Where to See Her: 3 Kings Tavern during The Fine Gentleman’s Club—Reunited! @ 11p.m. on Friday, August 25. *Subject to change.
The Lowdown: Christie Buchele made a name for herself with stand-up involving the heart-wrenching and hilarious realities of being a woman with cerebral palsy. Buchele doesn’t shy away from awkwardness and tells it like it is with her sarcasm and wit. You won’t want to miss her. Locally, Buchele runs monthly shows with and is a member of the comedy group the Pussy Bros.
10. Stephen Agyei
Where to See Him: Mutiny Information Cafe during Laughter Hours @ 10 p.m. on Friday, August 25. *Subject to change.
The Lowdown: As a regular at Comedy Works, Stephen Agyei has opened for numerous comedians, but he’s an act to watch himself. With Eddie Murphy-like delivery, Agyei knows how to tell a joke and poke fun at everyone — including his mother. In Denver, you can find Agyei on the stage easily, but we promise he’s one exciting act to follow.
11. Justine Marino
Where to See Her: Hi-Dive during Late Late Breakfast @ 3 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. *Subject to change.
The Lowdown: Raised in Denver, Justine Marino is a new face in the comedy scene, but she’s rising to fame quickly. Sassy with a bit of sweet, Marino doesn’t shy away from the limelight with her performance, enjoys pop culture references and utilizes her quick wit from her improv and sketch background. Marino has opened for Bo Burnham, Joel McHale and Jenny McCarthy, who cast her in the Netflix special Jenny McCarthy’s Dirty, Sexy, Funny.
12. Baron Vaughn
Where to See Him: Hi-Dive during The Deep End @ 8 p.m. on Thursday, August 24. 3 Kings Tavern during Sexpot Comedy Showcase @ 7 p.m. on Friday, August 25. Mutiny Information Cafe during Cartoons & Comedy @ 5 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. 3 Kings Tavern during High Plains Finale Show with the Grawlix @ 11 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. *Subject to change.
The Lowdown: You might know Baron Vaughn as “Bud” on Netflix’s Grace & Frankie or as the voice of “Tom Servo” in the new Mystery Science Theater 3000: The Return on Netflix, but Vaughn is also a talented stand-up act. With a theatrical style that often showcases his love for puns, every performance of Vaughn’s is as smart as it is hilarious. He definitely knows how to put on a show, and that’s why you can catch him at numerous times during the festival.
13. Josh Androsky
Where to See Him: Hi-Dive during The Deep End @ 8 p.m. on Thursday, August 24. Hi-Dive during We Still Like You @ 8 p.m. on Friday, August 25. 3 Kings Tavern during Reunited! @ 6 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. *Subject to change.
The Lowdown: Josh Androsky quit high school early to pursue his love of television. By 20, he was a full-time writer and at 23, Josh started doing stand-up comedy and has since appeared on This American Life, SyFy’s Sharkmania and VICELAND’s Flophouse. He has written for truTV’s Billy on the Street, Nickelodeon’s SpongeBob SquarePants and sold a digital series to Comedy Central where he flew to Manhattan and harassed Donald Trump with Trolling For Greatness.
14. The Grawlix
Where to See Them: 3 Kings Tavern during High Plains Finale Show with the Grawlix @ 11 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. (*Note: Cayton-Holland, Roy and Orvedahl will be performing separately at other shows. Individual schedules subject to change).
The Lowdown: “The Grawlix” is a comedy group comprised of Adam Cayton-Holland, Ben Roy and Andrew Orvedahl. Their live show combines stand-up with wacky live sketches and videos, and we promise it’s hilarious and unique all at once. Formed in 2010, The Grawlix rapidly took off until it became a web series and then became the original truTV sitcom Those Who Can’t. The Grawlix has come back to host their own show at the very end of the festival, and you definitely don’t want to miss it.
15. Rhea Butcher
Where to See Her: Hi-Dive during We Still Like You @ 8 p.m. on Friday, August 25. Hi-Dive during Late Late Breakfast @ 3 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. 3 Kings Tavern during Rory Scovel Tries Stand-Up for the Second Time @ 8 p.m. on Saturday, August 26. *Subject to change.
The Lowdown: Best known for her comedy regarding vegetarianism, homosexuality, feminism and other topics that are personal for her, Rhea Butcher is magnificent and entertaining throughout every performance. With wry humor and sharp delivery, Butcher is a spectacle for her audience. It’s hard not to love her. Butcher’s newest venture is the show Take My Wife, which she co-created and co-stars in with her wife, Cameron Esposito (who also headlined last year’s High Plains Comedy Festival).
Editor’s note: 303 Magazine is a media sponsor for this event. This comedian selection was determined independently of High Plains.