Impolite Company Brings a Laugh to Downtown St. Louis

Comedian Aaron Sawyer at the Jan. 19 Impolite Company showcase in Downtown St. Louis [Image courtesy of Impolite Company]
A lone bar stool and a microphone rest in many dark corners across St. Louis, waiting for the daring men and women of the prospering local comedy scene to try their hand at stand up. From designated clubs, such as The Funny Bone and Helium Comedy Club, to popular open mic nights at bars like The Heavy Anchor and Venice Cafe, St. Louis offers platforms for novices and professionals alike.

While the vibe may vary from club to club, one ongoing Downtown monthly event merges the risque with the ridiculous at an adults-only comedy showcase: Impolite Company.

“The show is billed as ‘Stand Up Comedy For Adults,’” notes established local comedian and Impolite Company host Chris Cyr. “Comics are encouraged—but not required—to perform material that is darker, dirtier or weirder than the normal material they’d do in a club setting.” Audiences are reminded through promotions and on the evening of the show that the topics stray from, as Cyr puts it, polite conversation. “Our rule for the comics is to not abuse the trust the audience has placed in them, and our rule for the audience is that if something’s funny, laugh,” he says. “If something’s not funny, don’t laugh.”

Held the third Friday of every month at Downtown’s The Crack Fox (1114 Olive St.) Impolite Company offers a handful of acts for a $7 cover change, $2 of which is donated to Planned Parenthood.

Impolite Company is mainly focused on showcasing local comedians, although touring performers are also included from time to time. The show is “designed to be intimate,” says Cyr, who averages the audience size at 20 to 40 people.

“My favorite thing about hosting the event at The Crack Fox, is the audience,” Cyr explains. “The bar has an eclectic clientele who are always on board for whatever the comic wants to do. This leads to comics taking chances on stage, usually with delightful results.”

Outside of the monthly showcase, Cyr mentions other unique shows are occasionally held around town, and a new project—“….a live staged science fiction anthology audio drama, along the lines of Twilight Zone, Dimension X and the like”—is in the works, with show dates and locations coming this spring.