Photo by Mike Carano

Dave Attell to Headline Inaugural Crapshoot Comedy Festival

The upcoming Crapshoot Comedy Festival released its first round of stand-up acts this week, with comedian’s comedian Dave Attell leading the lineup of established comics who will perform in Downtown Las Vegas May 18-20.

“He’s pretty much the godfather of modern comedy right now. Every comic, both in New York and L.A., [or] wherever they come from, just revere the guy,” says Paul Chamberlain, Crapshoot’s co-founder and executive producer. “[Attell] is definitely somebody that can address the tenor of the country right now … [and also is] profoundly respected by every comedian out there.”

The inaugural festival’s lineup features a number of performers recognizable from their on-screen work, namely in the late-night landscape. “Everybody who we put on the roster for this announcement has either an hour or half hour comedy special under their belt and a multitude of late-night appearances, whether it’s on a talk show or on Comedy Central,” Chamberlain says. Confirmed performers’ credits include The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, Jimmy Kimmel Live!, Conan, @midnight, Chelsea Lately and more. Many also have gone on to appear in primetime sitcoms, others currently behind-the-scenes in the writer’s room for shows such as 2 Broke Girls and the upcoming Powerless.

Aside from traditional stand-up performances, the festival will also feature two live podcast recordings: About Last Night, hosted by Adam Ray and Brad Williams, and Guys We F@#cked, hosted by Corinne Fisher and Krystyna Hutchinson. “It’s the ‘Anti Slut Shaming Podcast’ hosted by two fantastic comedians,” Chamberlain says of Guys We F@#cked. “It actually provides a great civic role and it’s just a phenomenally entertaining and popular podcast right now.”

As the festival is being produced by the same organizers behind 2014’s Maui Comedy Festival (which featured high-profile names such as Aisha Tyler of Archer and The Talk) and the Crapshoot Comedy showcase at Life Is Beautiful 2016 (headlined by actor/comedian Baron Vaughn, who most recently is starring in Netflix’s Grace & Frankie), a stellar lineup for Crapshoot’s inaugural fest should have come as no surprise.

“[Life Is Beautiful] certainly paved the way for us in the dialogue with agents and managers,” Chamberlain says. “The soft launch that we did at Life Is Beautiful garnered great feedback from the comics who performed here, and kind of got the word out there that the Maui [Comedy Festival] people are back, they’re doing something in Downtown Las Vegas, [and] it’s going to be great.”

Crapshoot’s initial lineup is as follows: Fahim Anwar, Dave Attell, Joel Kim Booster, Byron Bowers, Matt Braunger, Kurt Braunohler, Chris Cubas, Sabrina Jalees, Morgan Murphy, Aparna Nancherla, Mark Normand, Chris Porter, Adam Ray, Ryan Sickler, Beth Stelling, Jesus Trejo, Liza Treyger, Brad Williams and Jenny Zigrino. In addition to announcing the lineup, festival organizers also launched the Crapshoot Comedy station on Pandora, which features sets from all performing comedians.

Crapshoot will be held throughout Downtown, at venues including El Cortez’s Fiesta Room, Beauty Bar, Fremont Country Club, Commonwealth, Inspire Theater and Zappos Chambers, the online retailer’s newly renovated theater. “East Fremont, more so than anywhere in Vegas or anywhere else in the country for that matter, [has] a physical footprint where there [are] venues and bars and restaurants in such close proximity to each other,” Chamberlain says. “[It’s] an optimal setting for a walking festival, especially a walking comedy festival. That immediately made it the number one candidate.”

Chamberlain adds that the festival will include a local lineup featuring Las Vegas-based comedians. “We we will be constructing that as it gets closer to the festival. There will be a tip of the hat to the local comic scene.”

So, why should you score a ticket to the weekend of laughs? Chamberlain lays it out, plain and simple: “It’s truly one of the most professional, diverse and hilarious groupings of comics.”

Tickets to Crapshoot Comedy Festival are on sale now at

Vegas Seven