Exclusive: The Improv comedy club is not coming back to Atlanta after all

This was posted Tuesday, January 3, 2017 by Rodney Ho on his AJC Radio & TV Talk blog

Stephen de Haan had plans last year to re-open the Improv comedy club in a new Buckhead location after the landlords at the East Andrews Entertainment District decided to go in a different direction.

I reported last summer that he had found a spot at Tower Walk in Buckhead where Twin Peaks, Ru San’s Sushi and AMC Dine In Theatres are located off Piedmont Road. He hoped to open this winter.

But his publicist Lorrie Dixson Griggs just confirmed with me: “Plans fell through and it will not be re-opening.”

He had plans to create a new 350-seat club. Currently, there is a gap for non-black comics of a certain level of popularity to perform in Atlanta. Both the Punchline and the Laughing Skull are too small for some of the acts that performed at the original Improv in 2015, including Kevin Nealon, Norm MacDonald and George Wallace.

That Atlanta Improv, which franchises its name to clubs all over the country, lasted just over three years in the East Andrews space. The original Improv opened in New York City in 1963. There are now more than a dozen, from San Jose to Pittsburgh.

The original Punchline could fit up to 300 people but the club is now in a smaller 200-person room where the Landmark Diner resides in Buckhead.

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