Capital Region

Rotten 2021? Laugh it off at local venues on New Year’s Eve

Comedian Ross Bennett, shown here, will be at Proctors in Schenectady on Friday, along with Ray Harrington, Earl David Reed and Cody Montanye.

Comedian Ross Bennett, shown here, will be at Proctors in Schenectady on Friday, along with Ray Harrington, Earl David Reed and Cody Montanye.

With some Capital Region New Year’s Eve traditions on hold this year, comedy is key to ringing in 2022.

Stand-Up Global, a locally based company, is bringing back in-person First Night of Funny events, with three shows scheduled at three venues, including the Charles R. Wood Theater in Glens Falls, the Cohoes Music Hall and Proctors.

Each venue will host four comedians on New Year’s Eve, many of whom have been featured on Comedy Central, NBC and other national platforms.

Starting at 7 p.m., comedians Kevin Downey Jr., Jennifer McMullen, Anthony DiDomenico and Anthony Devito will perform at the Wood Theater.

At the same time, the Cohoes Music Hall will host Mike Gaffney, Brian Beaudoin, Dan Guerin and Josh Kincade.

The Proctors show kicks off at 8 p.m. and features Ross Bennett, Ray Harrington, Earl David Reed and Cody Montanye.

Last year’s First Night of Funny was a virtual event. This time around, each venue has COVID-19 precautions in place, including mask requirements and proof of vaccination or negative test for attendees of certain ages. For information on each venue’s policies, visit their websites:, and

Comedy is also front and center at the Park Theater in Glens Falls, with a “Comedy After Dark” performance by Sean Donnelly. The comedian has appeared on “The Late Show with David Letterman,” “Conan” and NBC’s “Last Comic Standing.” He co-hosts the podcast “My Dumb Friends” with fellow comedian Dan St. Germain on the All Things Comedy network. The show begins at 6 p.m. and will include a three-course dinner along with a cocktail happy hour. Tickets are $99. For information, visit


Beyond comedy, there are also a few concerts and parties scheduled throughout the Capital Region.

At Rivers Casino & Resort, Funk Evolution will be performing in the event center as part of the Casino’s NYE Glow Party.

The local band includes members who come from different musical backgrounds, including pop, rock, funk, blues and more. They’ll ring in the new year with a performance starting at 10 p.m.

Attendees are encouraged to dress in neon colors. Admission includes party favors and a champagne toast. Tickets are $25 presale and $30 day-of. For information, visit

Not far away, Frog Alley will host a New Year’s Eve celebration with Skeeter Creek and guest DJ Mikey C starting at 7 p.m. Tickets are $100 and include three hours of open bar, appetizers from MADE Catering and a champagne toast. For information, visit

In Saratoga Springs, opera singer Zachary James and pianist Laurie Rogers will perform a mix of Broadway and classical songs at Universal Preservation Hall. James is known by local audiences for his portrayal of the title role in Opera Saratoga’s production of “Man of La Mancha” last summer. The bass baritone also created the role of Lurch in “The Addams Family” and has performed in “South Pacific” and “Coram Boy.”

Rogers recently celebrated her 10th anniversary as Opera Saratoga’s head of music staff and director of the company’s Youth Artist Program.
The show, presented by Opera Saratoga and UPH, is free to attend and starts at 7 p.m. Friday. For information, visit

At the Palace Theater, Dark Star Orchestra will perform two sets: at 9 p.m. Friday and 8 p.m. Saturday. The band’s shows are built off of the Grateful Dead’s extensive catalog.

Tickets for Friday’s show are $49.50 in advance and $55 day-of. Tickets for Saturday’s show are $41.50 in advance and $45 day-of. For information, visit

Categories: Entertainment

Susan Riley Hart December 30, 2021
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I always am happy to see the Gazette civer Mopco. However, I believe Mopco’s shows have moved online. I hope you’ll have time to confirm and correct the info in your online version, although I realize time is tight.