Hollywood's Comedy Nights - History


"Hollywoods Comedy Nights" was originally founded by John "Hollywood" Rotnem to give himself and other comedians regular stage-time in which to practice and improve their act. Initially, just one German-language show was performed, monthly, at the Melody Club. On moving to Flanagan's in the Altstadt in 2004, the show became two separate monthly shows, one featuring German-language performers, the other featuring comedy in English, due to demand from the large British/American Forces and English-speaking expatriate community in the North Rhine Westphalen area. The show began featuring both local native-English-speaking comedians, German who wished to try their hand at English language comedy, and imported native-English comedians from the UK, US and Canada.

With the move to the Cologne Hard Rock Cafe, the show concentrated solely on English-language stand-up comedy, as the audience for the German-language show had dropped off, and because many people confused the English and German shows. A sister show, at Fiddlers Pub in Bonn-Endenich, started in March 2007. By mid-2007, a change of ownership and new limitations on live shows at the Hard Rock Cafe forced a change of venue, to the Alter Wartesaal at Cologne Hauptbahnhof. The large size of the Alter Wartesaal and the positioning of the show in the week (Mondays) made it extremely difficult to fill, and so only three shows took place there. The show then moved back to Flanagan's Irish Pub in the Altermarkt, not far from the Alter Wartesaal.

Many comedians have performed in the shows, such as Heinz Gröning(better known to German audiences as der Unglaubliche Heinz, moderator of "Um Antwort wird Gebieten"(Comedy Central) and "FunkHaus" (WDR)), Chris McCausland, Steve Day and Pommy Johnson. The show features established English-speaking comedians, as well as giving German performers the chance to try their hand at performing in English.

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