Good for a laugh!

Marloes Tervoort, woensdag 13 februari 2013

A night out in a basement does something to me. Starved of daylight, I’m in my element straight away, in a manner of speaking. This was the case in the cellar bar of the building where I studied. Going in at 5 pm for one drink meant rolling out again drunk six hours later. I behave better at the Toomler comedy club but I find it just as cosy.

At the same time we’re entertained by stand-up comedians, some of whom are of course funnier than others. Though Toomler is run by Dutch people, there are frequently performances by foreign comedians in English. There is even a Comedytrain International Summer Festival, where big names such as Arj Baker, Glenn Wool and Dwight Slade have performed.

A more American option is Boom Chicago at Leidseplein. The comedy troupe was established in 1993 and puts on shows that ridicule Dutch politics and social developments. Fun for tourists who identify with the Dutch habits and customs which are new to them, but there’s plenty to tickle the Dutch too; I speak from experience. It’s always good to find out how others see ‘us’. And to realise that some Dutch habits and developments are in fact rather odd. The number one topic is rude restaurant and bar staff, but our annual Sinterklaas festival is equally fit for lampooning.

Toomler, Breitnerlaan 2, Amsterdam
Boom Chicago, Leidseplein 12, Amsterdam
Comedy Café Amsterdam, Max Euweplein 43-45, Amsterdam