Aussie comedian Ronny Chieng joins a packed Comedy Festival lineup for SXSW 2019

The SXSW Comedy Festival grows every year, and this year is without question its most packed lineup ever, with comedians from Tim and Eric, Broad City, The Daily Show (including Australia’s own Ronny Chieng) and iconic favourites like Kathy GriffinTodd Barry and Paul F. Tompkins.

The roster – including stand-up showcases, improv performances, conversations, podcast recordings, and more – is sure to introduce exciting new comics to festival attendees and dazzle them with some of the best and brightest talent working today. A unique gathering of performers from all reaches of entertainment, SXSW is always an opportunity for unique moments and spontaneous collaborations.

Here’s the line-up announced so far:

Abbi Jacobson • Amy Miller • Anna Seregina • Baron Vaughn • Beth Stelling • Busy Philipps • Dave Hill • Debra DiGiovanni • Doug Benson • Dulce Sloan • Erik Griffin • Eugene Mirman • Horatio Sanz • Ian Edwards • Ilana Glazer • Jaboukie Young-White • James Adomian • Jessica McKenna • Johnny Pemberton • Jon Gabrus • Josh Johnson • Kathy Griffin • Kurt Braunohler • Leonard Maltin • Liza Treyger • Mark Normand • Matt Besser • Matt Braunger • Megan Gailey • Michael Kosta • Michaela Watkins • Mike Lawrence • Nick Thune • Open Mike Eagle • Paul F. Tompkins • Ricky Velez • Ronny Chieng • Roy Wood Jr. • Sam Jay • Stuart Goldsmith • Tim Heidecker • Todd Barry • Todd Glass • Whitmer Thomas

2019 SXSW Comedy Festival Special Programs Featuring:

An Evening with Todd Glass • ASSSSCAT • The Comedian’s Comedian • The Daily Show News Team Live • Doug Loves Movies • Dynasty Typewriter • improv4humans • The Laugh Button Live! • Loud Village Live • The New Negroes with Baron Vaughn and Open Mike Eagle • Roast Battle • The Todd Barry Podcast and more!

The festival also promises a run of surprise guests throughout the week.

Here’s a more detailed look at the run of events:

The festival opens on Friday, March 8th with James Adomian’s Elon Musk Keynote: The Frightening and Awful Future of Humanity. In his second-ever SXSW address, the visionary interplanetary engineer will unveil his new high-tech superproject and detail his newest slate of world-saving endeavors from Tesla Motors, SpaceX, and his thousands of other companies. Behold in awe as Elon Musk (Adomian) dives into the exciting future of technology, social media and other buzzwords.

Following the world premiere of Kathy Griffin: One Hell of a Story, Kathy Griffin will sit down for a conversation about her now infamous photoshoot which left her besieged by an angry president and vengeful media, led to unemployment and a slew of death threats, and opened a door to a new chapter in her storied career. The discussion will center around free speech, fake news, and the comedian’s precarious role in today’s cultural divide.

Comedy Central brings two exciting showcases to the festival this year. The Daily Show News Team Live will take to the stage with stand-up performances by Ronny Chieng, Michael Kosta, Dulcé Sloan, Roy Wood Jr. and Jaboukie Young-White. The New Negroes with Baron Vaughn and Open Mike Eagle, a new stand-up and musical series which premieres on the network this Spring, is dedicated to providing a platform for diverse voices. The duo will present their socially aware and long-running live stage show at the fest, leading a lineup of comedians with musical guest Phonte.

Also at the intersection of comedy and music, Riffs and Riff Raff with Nick Thune & Friends will bring Thune together with a variety of musically inclined comics, headlined by fellow guitar-playing comedian Tim Heidecker. There will be multiple chances to catch An Evening with Todd Glass, a self-mocking take on the traditional lounge act. Saddled with a deliberately uncooperative band, Glass is like an exhausted dad corralling his mischievous kids, doing what he can to keep the show running smoothly.

Upright Citizen’s Brigade (UCB) cofounder, Matt Besser, returns with a slate of shows. He’ll lead UCB’s wildly popular ASSSSCAT, which showcases a premiere group of improvisers as they riff on true tales from celebrity guests. This year’s monologist will be none other than Broad City’s Ilana Glazer. Besser will also bring his hit podcast improv4humans to the stage and he’ll spark up some high-minded comedy along with Abbi Jacobson at festival favorite, 420 Show with Matt Besser.

This year’s festival will feature a selection of the country’s most exciting purveyors of comedy. The Laugh Button returns with New York’s Gotham Comedy Club to present a roster of favorites from the iconic club’s stage. Paul F. Tompkins will host Dynasty Typewriter Presents That’s Enchantertainment!, a variety show in the spirit of LA’s new hit comedy venue. Busy Phillips, Kurt Braunohler, and a lineup of some of the brightest comics working today will keep the laughs coming all night long. Plus Roast Battle is back to offend for another year. The original team from The Comedy Store in LA will lead the anything-goes brawl of wits. Host Brian Moses, DJ Coach Tea, and dynamic hype crew The Wave (Jeremiah Watkins, Willie Hunter, Jamar Neighbors) will be joined by 2016 Roast Battle champion Mike Lawrence, who will preside over the judging panels for all three nights of the competition.

The schedule also features a slate of live podcast recordings. Doug Benson will record his hit game-show, Doug Loves Movies. Renowned film historian Leonard Maltin will talk all things cinema with a comedic guest in an episode of Maltin on Movies. Stuart Goldsmith’s podcast, The Comedian’s Comedian, has grown into a giant on the UK comedy scene attracting a who’s who of British comedy. Curious and insightful, he’ll bring his distinctive style stateside to interview Eugene Mirman, Matt Braunger and other fellow comedians.

Look out for further announcements from SXSW Comedy, which will include information about additional performers, showcases, and events. Full details and lineups can be found at sxsw.com/comedy/2019.

The SXSW Comedy Festival is open to all SXSW Badges, Music Festival and Film Festival Wristband holders.

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Larry Heath

Founding Editor of the AU review. You can find him on Twitter @larry_heath or on Instagram @larryheath.

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