On Saturday, May 4, some of the Pacific Northwest's funniest people will take the stage at the Egyptian Theatre as part of The Stranger's Undisputable Geniuses of Comedy showcase. Andy Iwancio! Dan Hurwitz! Chris Mejia! Monica Nevi! Juno Men! Bernice Larson! Kermet Apio! And headliner Sam Miller! Plus, the whole night will be hosted by Emmett Montgomery, beloved weirdo, host of Friendship Dungeon and Joketellers Union, and one of 2023's Undisputable Geniuses.

It's going to be very funny! I hope you come! Tickets are available here! Exclamation points!

This week, ahead of the show, we're getting to know all the comics. Up next is Juno Men! Men co-produces the Comedy Nest, aka one of Seattle's most popular open mic nights. When I interviewed all the local comics participating in last year's Undisputable Geniuses of Comedy showcase, pretty much every participant praised the Comedy Nest for being a reliably hilarious and inclusive gem. See for yourself every Tuesday night at the Rendezvous! Need further evidence that she's funny? Last year she was named Best Comedian by Seattle Gay News.

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How does it feel to be declared an Undisputable Genius of Comedy?

Wow, thanks, you too! Wait, what did you say? I don't take compliments well. Candidly, it's a combination of surreal, flattering, and nerve-racking to be described as any level of talented in comedy, much less an "undisputable genius," much much less by a newspaper that I've been a fan of since moving to Seattle. 

The show is at the Egyptian, which is rumored to be haunted. Do you believe in ghosts?

Absolutely not, but also absolutely yes. I think if I ever met a ghost, my first reaction would be something akin to "Well damn, guess I was wrong," followed up with an "I hope they're a friendly ghost, like Casper."

Last year you filmed a segment for the upcoming special Laugh Proud. Can you tell me a little more about the film? Variety reported that it’ll start streaming on May 30!

Yeah! Laugh Proud is an all-queer comedy special feature film assembled by Quentin Lee with comics from across the country and LGBTQIA+ community. It was such a surreal experience to be able to work on a project with him, especially as he'd previously worked with some of my absolute favorite comedians like Robin Tran, Lin Sun, and Atsuko Okatsuka. The film itself is a celebration of all the different subcommunities that make up the broader queer community and I'm really excited to see it once it releases. 

I saw on Instagram Threads that you were somehow responsible for a couple breaking up at a recent show of yours? I gotta know more! Did you ever get details?

Oh gosh, that happened during the recent Upper Left Comedy Festival. It was my first show on the first night of the fest and I have a bit where I do some crowd work with couples in the audience. Mid-conversation chatting with this ostensibly hetero-cis couple, the guy volunteered this description of how they met, "We got together in sort of a 'last helicopter out of Nam' hinge situation"—I'm still upset I didn't do more with that during my set. After the show, I was chatting with some audience members and one of them told me that they saw that couple walk out of the theatre ahead of most everyone else looking like they would soon be having a stern conversation. So I guess the takeaway here is that I'm a great comedian to book for Valentine's Day shows!

You’ve been a part of Seattle’s comedy community for years—and you co-produce the Comedy Nest, which is highly respected by local comedians. How has Seattle’s comedy scene changed in recent years? From the outside looking in, it looks like it’s really beginning to thrive. Is that accurate?

Well first off, thanks so much for shouting out the Comedy Nest! I really can't overstate how intrinsic the Nest has been to my career as a comedian—it's a women, queer, trans, and POC-focused weekly open mic that happens every Tuesday at the Rendezvous. Having such a place has fostered so much local community, skill, and talent within demographics that are historically underrepresented in the comedy world. I'd go so far as to call it a Seattle comedy institution, though I have an obvious bias given my current role as a co-producer. 

But to your actual question, I've actually only really been involved with the Seattle comedy scene since 2021. Because of that, I feel like my vantage of the scene is tinged by both my own nascency and the post-pandemic slump of in-person events coming back. So those grains of salt being out there, I do think the scene is thriving! It feels like there's a ton more indie shows, clubs, comedians, competitions, festivals, and a really diverse spread of open mics cropping up, and I'm really grateful to be doing comedy in Seattle during what feels like a cultural boom.

What’s your favorite place to see comedy in Seattle right now?

The Comedy Nest on Tuesdays and Queers to the Front on Mondays [at Comedy/Bar] are both awesome open mics where you can catch comedians working out material.

The Stranger presents the 2024 Undisputable Geniuses of Comedy Sat May 4 at the Egyptian Theatre, 8 pm, $25, 18+. Tickets are available here.

Read our interviews with Andy Iwacio and Monica Nevi.