Sunday, December 7, 2003

Levee club hooks big names

Schimmel, Shore and Pollak scheduled for new Funny Bone

By Larry Nager
The Cincinnati Enquirer

Starting with a Grand Opening New Year's Eve show featuring standup comic Robert Schimmel, the new Funny Bone Comedy Club at Newport on the Levee is delivering the big names.

"We're bringing the top talent in the country to you guys," says Funny Bone regional manager Dave Stroupe. "We've been there before (several Funny Bones operated in the area during the late '80s) and we think Cincinnati is ready for an 'A' comedy club again." Go Bananas in Montgomery is the area's sole full-time comedy nightspot.

The 300-plus-seat, 7,500 square-foot Funny Bone is located in a new space on the Levee's mezzanine. After Schimmel's opening run of Dec. 31 and Jan. 2-4, the club has actor/comedian Kevin Pollak for a Feb. 5-8 engagement ($18; $20 Friday-Saturday). On Feb. 20-22, it's one of MTV's first nonvideo successes, Pauly Shore ($22).

Jan. 8-11, Harland Williams, a veteran of such comedies as There's Something About Mary and Dumb and Dumber headlines ($18; $20 Friday-Saturday); Jan. 15-18, ventriloquist Jeff Dunham ($16; $18 Friday-Saturday); Jan. 21-25, comic hypnotist J. Medicine Hat ($12; $17 Friday-Saturday).

Admission to Schimmel's New Year's Eve shows is $60 per person. The 7:30 p.m. show includes a dinner buffet; the 10 p.m. show does the New Year's thing with champagne split and a choice of a fruit-and-cheese platter or fresh berries and whipped cream. Reservations: (859) 957-2000.

Admission to Schimmel's other shows is $20 Jan. 2-3; $18 Jan. 4.

"This should be one of the great comedy clubs," says Stroupe. "Newport on the Levee is a good location. These lifestyle centers are the place to be with a comedy club."

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