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AMP Bringing Comedy to the County with New Series

By Joel Pace

AMP Bringing Comedy to the County with New Series

The venue will host comedy nights twice a month this fall

 Published: 2016.08.09 04:42

 Comedian Ryan Van Genderen
, one of 10 comics coming to AMP in its upcoming standup series, will perform Nov. 17.

Comedian Ryan Van Genderen
, one of 10 comics coming to AMP in its upcoming standup series, will perform Nov. 17.

Despite a thriving comedy scene in D.C., Montgomery County doesn’t have much to offer by way of standup.

But with an upcoming comedy series, AMP by Strathmore is aiming to change that.

The  250-seat venue in Pike & Rose announced Monday it will host five comedy nights, each featuring two comics, from September through December.

“It’s a genre we obviously wanted to explore,” said Sam Brumbaugh, director of programming at Strathmore. “There aren’t comedy clubs on Rockville Pike or anything. … There was definitely a hole there.”

AMP, which opened in March 2015 and offers food and mostly music shows, experimented with a few comedy nights in its first year of business. Each was successful, leading Strathmore executives  to think there was an audience for comedy in the region, Brumbaugh said.

Partnering with booking agency Comedy Zone, AMP wants to bring high-quality entertainers, even if they aren’t household names yet.

“Honestly we chose the best comedians in the country for your area,” Brian Hefron, founder of Comedy Zone, said, noting they are all ready to break into the mainstream. “We’ve got people straight from Netflix and HBO and Comedy Central specials. …You’re talking about the best touring standups in the country.”

AMP also chose the comics with the regional audience in mind. Noting the “sophisticated crowd” in the county, Brumbaugh said they opted for comedians with interesting voices and stories for the series, rather than looking for low-brow entertainers.

Comics Darren “DS” Sanders and Melissa Douty open the series with a set on Sept. 29. The shows, scheduled for twice a month, will take place on Wednesday and Thursday evenings. Tickets cost between $15 and $25 and are on sale on AMP’s website.

 “We want [comedy] to be a really consistent presence” at AMP and in the county, Brumbaugh said. “We think it should be and can be. We think the audience is there for it.”

 

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