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NC Comedy Arts Festival

When: Feb. 1-19 2012

Various venues—It's time again for the towns of Chapel Hill and Carrboro to get their funny on. For its 12th go-round, the North Carolina Comedy Arts Festival—assembled, as always, by the folks at Carrboro's Dirty South Improv Comedy Theater—will continue serving up a versatile collection of sketch and standup comedy and live improv throughout the month. But it's standup that the fest will be focusing on this week. Starting Wednesday, comics from around the state and country will be yukking it up at the DSI Comedy Theater, the Varsity Theatre and the ArtsCenter. The main draw will be in Durham, where comedian and famed sleepwalker Mike Birbiglia performs on Friday night at the Carolina Theatre.

There will also be classes for all those aspiring funny people. Former David Letterman comedy booker Eddie Brill will teach a master class on standup over the weekend. (We say "former" because Brill was fired recently for making some foot-in-mouth statements in the press about female comics. And seeing as how the first class on Saturday is sold out, there's a huge possibility that the students will want their instructor to explain himself.)

But this is only the beginning. Go to our Artery blog for an interview with festival organizer Zach Ward, as well as interviews with other visiting performers. —Craig D. Lindsey

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