While comedy open mics and regular stand-up shows can be found in more Brooklyn bars than not these days, it’s always nice (and convenient) to have a home base. And that’s exactly what seasoned NYC comics and show producers Austin Locke, Nick Hopping, and Nathan Hopping (the latter two are brothers) were doing separately when they decided to combine forces and open Flop House Comedy Club.

“It was a really serendipitous moment, realizing we were both doing the exact same thing at the exact same time,” Locke said. “It was obvious that our businesses would either become moral enemies or best friends. So, we decided just to start one together.”

Flop House Comedy Club opened at 326 Grand Street — next to Emmy Squared and in the space that used to house Twenty-Sided Store, which moved farther up Grand — in early December and has been hosting multiple shows a week ever since, featuring comics that have appeared on Comedy Central, MTV, NPR, Showtime, and, of course, many podcasts. And, despite the customary learning curve of any new business, the Hoppings and Locke have been enjoying the ride.

“Our first two shows sold out, but we only had a curtain separating the bar area from the show room. So the noise was really an issue. For the next week, we installed a lot more sound-proofing, we’ve tweaked the space a bit. We built it all by hand and furnished it with furniture Nick got from his grandma’s house,” Locke explained. “Overall, I am incredibly happy with the way the space has turned out; our shows have been so much fun.”

The aforementioned bathroom wasn’t always a given, though. Locke recalled putting around 30 offers out on various spaces in Brooklyn, some missing bathrooms, some sharing lobbies. But the trio’s determination didn’t wane, and Locke fatefully came across the “perfect” 326 Grand space walking home from Williamsburg Cinemas (likely not long after Twenty-Sided Store had relocated), and scheduled a viewing immediately afterward, putting an offer out on the spot.


And while they were originally open to putting down roots in other Brooklyn neighborhoods, the team is now all-in on the local neighborhood and have plans to continue fostering community connection while bridging the gap between comics and audiences. This includes upcoming crowd-work only shows with seating rearranged in a circle, and having multiple shows most nights to showcase as many comedians as possible. Plus, they’re already in talks with fellow Grand Street businesses to coordinate ways to collaborate in the near future.

“The neighbors have already been so nice to us, and I really want to make Flop House a part of this community,” Locke noted.

See the full Flop House Comedy Club schedule on their Instagram and website.

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