Last night, Shea Stadium reopened for one night only so The Macaulay Culkin Show could hold what might be the comedy night’s final date at the East Williamsburg DIY venue. As we recently reported, Shea was forced to stop hosting shows last month while it awaits money from its Kickstarter so it can go legit.
No one knows for sure when Shea Stadium’s next event will be. Sally Burtnick and Brett Davis, hosts of The Macaulay Culkin Show, said they were thrilled that the venue reopened for them, but they didn’t dwell on its plight on stage. Instead, the audience was treated to a lineup that included Viceland’s Tim Barnes, Daily Show writer Jena Friedman, and the husband and wife team Murf Meyer and Diana Kolsky of IFC’s Menage A Trois. Much like the musicians that Shea features, the comedians got to connect with their fans with an intimacy and laid-back atmosphere that no regular comedy club can match. The show, which has been running monthly at Shea for the past three years, announced a special 30-comedian showcase in June that Burtnick and Davis hope will happen in the place they’ve always called home.
Afterwards I talked with Shea Stadium’s founder Adam Reich, with whom I got acquainted after taking group portraits for our mutual friends in So So Glos and Unstoppable Death Machines. We were out on the upstairs patio facing the street as a police car drove past us slow enough for Adam to take notice. With their recent NYPD shutdowns now a few months behind them and last night’s show not being overly crowded, I asked Adam if the cops had begun to leave them alone. Adam responded by motioning to the car as it crept past us and said, “Does it look like they’re leaving us alone?”
For now, Shea’s previous bookings have been moved to nearby venues (follow their Twitter to stay in the loop). Meanwhile, their primary focus as music documentarians continues, with bands like Wicked Kind recently practicing there and the release of a new live compilation Exploding in Sound: Live at Shea Stadium. Their Kickstarter expires this Friday, April 21.