Stand-up comedians Daniel Weingarten and Michael Blaustein sold out their performance at Stand Up NY, a comedy club in New York City’s Upper West Side, on Friday, Nov. 16.
Opened in 1986, Stand Up NY is one of New York City’s premier comedy clubs, with different acts every night of the week. Stars of tomorrow and famous comedians of today have performed at the club such as Jerry Seinfeld, Chris Rock, Jon Stewart and Jim Gaffigan, as well as producers from Comedy Central, HBO, NBC and ABC.
Weingarten has been performing stand-up comedy for eight years, doing about 1,500 shows, and is known for his jokes and social media videos about being a Mexican-Argentine Jew who doesn’t exactly fit the stereotype of what a Latin American looks like — he has blonde hair and blue eyes. Often times, people question the authenticity of his background.
“I always find myself having to prove I’m Latino, not only to white people but to Latinos, too,” Weingarten said. “I’ll meet with a Mexican dude and I’ll say ‘I’m Mexicano’ and he’ll say ‘No mames güey’(don’t pull my leg). Canelo si, y tu no (Canelo yes, but not you).’ And he’s a ginger. I feel that’s farther away.”
Friends for three years, both Weingarten and Blaustein are on separate tours but decided to meet in New York to do a show together. Blaustein has been on about half of Weingarten’s recent tour dates. Weingarten was the headliner for the night and charmed the audience with humor that appealed to both Hispanic and Jewish audiences.
Blaustein, an internationally touring comedian, opened the show. He’s been doing comedy for nine years and has done over 2,000 shows around the world. He’s performed at the Comedy Central on Campus Tour, The College Humor Tour, The Oddball Comedy Fest and The New York Comedy Festival. He was also a cast member of the final season of MTV’s Punk’d and developed a Snapchat series for Comedy Central.
Blaustein’s performance was energetic and silly. He uses exaggerated movements, noises, differently pitched voices, loud and hilarious yet shocking adult humor and interactions with the audience to make everyone laugh. Both comedians use life stories, interactions with family and friends and their identity for their content, mixing into their stories self-deprecating but relatable humor.
“I’m just not built to get into a fight. God did not make me like that. Look at these hands. These are adorable hands. These are not for fighting. These are for catching butterflies,” Blaustein said.
Weingarten and Blaustein are best friends that do comedy together. Blaustein said they support each emotionally, artistically and with relationships.
“We work together. We go on the road together and we get to do this thing that we both love and get to help each other along the way and give each other feedback.”
Although everyone in the room was laughing that night, Blaustein said it’s not always like this, especially when you first start.
“When you first start, most nights upstage are horrible and you have to persevere through all through all that darkness. It’s rewarding,” Blaustein said.
Blaustein went into comedy because the people around him told him he was funny. He was the class clown type. In 2009, when he moved to New York, he got on stage for the first time and loved it. He lives in Los Angeles now.
Weingarten said he got into comedy because he was an outcast. He started doing comedy at 18 and was really bad at first, but kept going because he loves doing it.
“We’re working towards something. Not every night is like tonight. Nights like tonight make it feel like it’s all worth it,” Weingarten said. “This all comes from just people that follow me online. It’s something really cool though — people engaging with me and my content. For them to all come together in real life and share a night of comedy, laughter and joy, despite whatever is going on in life, it’s a pretty cool thing.”