You might not think it to watch them from the audience, but comedians generally are very collegial. Individually, they work hard crafting and delivering very personal thoughts in a very public setting – something that the vast majority of people dread. But it’s a nonconformist pursuit that they share with fellow comedians, it’s an unconventional passion that binds them together as they see one another night after night at open mics and showcases and clubs.

Still, threaded into that comedic camaraderie stirs a sense of competition – to win more laughs, to be more popular, to garner more kudos from one’s peers. That’s a dynamic to consider in standup contests: Birds of a feather in cage matches.

And so it is with the 3rd Annual Battle Royale Stand-Up Comedy Competition, presented by Milwaukee’s Caste of Killers Comedy Collective.

Dozens of comedians have registered to match wits for cash, exposure and bragging rights. Mark your calendars for the scheduled bouts:

  • Saturday, Sept. 7, Arcade Theatre, in the Underground Collaborative, 161 W. Wisconsin Ave., lower level.
  • Tuesday, Sept. 10, Down & Over Pub, 2535 S. Kinnickinnic Ave.
  • Wednesday, Sept. 18, Milwaukee’s Comedy Café, 615 E. Brady St.
  • Culminating in the finals, Saturday, Sept. 28, at the Karma Bar & Grill, 600 E. Ogden Ave.

See the lineups here.  Murphy Row won the inaugural contest in 2011. Lara Beitz was the 2012 champion, with Ryan Mason (in a Milwaukee Comedy interview below) as runner-up.


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