Prepare for laughs: emerging comedy festival takes over Austin

Bill Hader is the highlight of Saturday Night Lives cast.

Bill Hader is the highlight of “Saturday Night Live”‘s cast.

The Moontower Comedy and Oddity Festival is coming to Austin and comedy fans are thrilled.

From April 24-27, Austin will be hosting some of the biggest names in comedy. The Moontower Comedy and Oddity Festival is put on by the Paramount Theatre and is one of the most up-and-coming comedy festivals.

This will be the second annual Moontower Comedy and Oddity Festival, a beginning to what may become a facet in the comedy scene.

As comedy is subjective, the festival features acts of every genre including stand-up, improv, sketch and even musical comedy. This event has many different comical options to please all types of comedy-lovers.

However, the headliners include some of the biggest names in comedy. For the “Saturday Night Live” fans, current cast mate Bill Hader will be performing.

Hader is known for his recurring characters on SNL such as Stefon, the flamboyant New Yorker. His comedic talents are also showcased in the movies “Superbad,” “Forgetting Sarah Marshall,” “Adventureland” and “Hot Rod.”

The SNL veteran Dana Carvey is also scheduled to perform at the Moontower Comedy and Oddity Festival. Carvey is best known for teaming up with Mike Myers in the cult classic “Wayne’s World.”

For more offbeat comedy, Maria Bamford will be doing her uncomfortably funny stand-up. Bamford has the amazing ability to change her voice as needed for her stories, making her stand-up more of a character performance. Using this talent, Bamford lends her voice to Hot Dog Princess in the cartoon “Adventure Time.”

The festival will also be showcasing stand-up comedian Bill Burr, a regular on the late-night circuit. Burr has been featured on “The Late Show with David Letterman” and “Late Night with Conan O’Brien.”

Other big wigs that will be performing include Jim Gaffigan, known for his stand-up commentary on bacon, Michael Ian Black, commentator on VH1’s “I Love the 70’s/80’s/90’s/New Millennium” and Judah Friedlander, who plays Frank on the television show “30 Rock.”

The truly exciting part of the festival comes from the input of many local Austin comedians. This year the current winner of the Funniest Person in Austin Contest, Ramin Nazer, will be performing.

His accomplishments include a showcase on the “Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson,” working on HUMORdy, a collection of stand-up, sketches and cartoons made by Austin comedians and producing Live at Coldtowne, a stand-up showcase every Friday at the Coldtowne Theater.

Mac Blake is another local Austin comedian to watch out for. He is a silly stand-up comedian as well as gifted improv and sketch comedy player. Blake is currently featured in the troupe Stage Comedy, which can be seen at the Coldtowne Theater.

Other Austin comedians performing in the Moontower Comedy and Oddity Festival include Maggie Maye, Amber Bixby, Derek Phelps, Kath Barbadoro, Michael Priest and Danny Palumbo.

These comics can be seen at many comedy venues around Austin on a weekly basis. In the Austin comedy scene, they are the people to watch. Overall, the festival will be packed with over 100 comedians looking to make you laugh.