Up-and-Coming Comedian Headlines Monthly Stand-Up Night

  • Comedian Ryan Donahue headlines the monthly evening of standup comedy at the Engine Room in White River Junction, tonight at 7. (Courtesy photograph)

Valley News Staff Writer
Thursday, August 02, 2018

So far, so funny for the monthly comedy shows at The Engine Room in White River Junction.

Tonight’s session, with rising comic Ryan Donahue headlining, is the seventh that Upper Valley stand-up artists Bryan Muenzer and Collen Doyle have organized at the 4,000-square-foot venue since Brandon Fox of Main Street Catering took over management of the former Tupelo Music Hall in January.

“Our turnout so far has been anywhere from 60 to 80 people, and the venue can comfortably hold well over 150 people,” Doyle, who runs the Woolen Mill Comedy Club in Bridgewater, said on Tuesday. “It’ll be interesting to see how it evolves, as we create awareness in the community. Depending how it goes, we might move it to a Friday night or a Saturday night.”

Muenzer, who moved to the Upper Valley 10 years ago and has been performing in the area and in Boston for the past five years, said that he hopes Donahue’s presence attracts more comedy fans than in June and July.

“Summer has been a little harder,” said Muenzer, who lives in Sunapee and works at River Valley Community College. “We’re trying to get back on the upswing in terms of attendance. The talent has been there, for sure.”

Donahue has been sharing his talents regularly on Jimmy Kimmel’s late-night talk show on ABC, as well as in the HBO series Crashing, where he is one of dozens of comedians who play versions of themselves in the Judd Apatow-produced sitcom about a comedian trying to recover professionally and personally from a divorce. Tonight, Doyle and Muenzer will open for Donahue.

“Brandon has really streamlined the venue,” Doyle said. “The food he provides is excellent, and he has a great beer selection. He provides things that we’re not able to offer at the Woolen Mill.”

Then there’s the growing vibe of the town as an evening destination for audiences seeking entertainment — and for comedians.

“They have a chance to really enjoy White River,” Doyle said. “They get the downtown experience, and leave excited to spread the word and to come back.”

Ryan Donahue headlines the monthly session of stand-up comedy at the Engine Room in White River Junction tonight at 8. Doors open at 7.