Mike David no longer part of Red Bar Comedy Club. Also: No more Red Bar Comedy Club
In a statement released just now on Facebook, Kyle Lane (pictured, left) details his split from business partner Mike David, who until recently co-owned downtown Chicago’s Red Bar Comedy Club:
As most of you may know by now, I have severed my business relationship with Mike David. I truly believe Mike is a very gifted on-air talent, I bare him no ill-will, and wish him the best in his future endeavors.
However, Mike and I had a material disagreement over the direction of our business relationship, and I felt certain actions taken by Mike compromised the integrity of the business of the Red Bar Comedy Club.
I unequivocally believe that treating people as a whole with honesty, gratitude, positivity, and respect is the only way to pursue any venture, whether it be through friends, family, or business relations, and I did not believe Mike was equally committed to these ideals.
Our split will allow each of us to pursue our businesses as we see fit.
I genuinely believe in the Chicago Comedy Scene, and will do everything in my power to support it, protect it, and do everything possible to help make Chicago the best place for comedy. I would like to thank my family, friends, and supporters – you truly are the reason I pursue my convictions.
# # #
Kyle Lane, The Comedy Bar Chicago Proprietor
So the Red Bar Comedy Club is no more. It’s now The Comedy Bar—still at Ontourage—and theoretically will continue operations as they were before. Kyle’s a good guy, I have faith he’ll keep making the room the glamorous home for local talent it was always destined to be.
I’ve had a strange history with Mike David. I profiled him when I was at Time Out Chicago (it should be noted that TOC has the worst website in existence, and the only copy of the story I found that worked was on someone else’s site), and the article provoked some pretty angry words between Mike and I. Not to mention the hordes of commenters who thought I sucked because I took a reasoned stance on something they loved. Hey, I get it.
But I always respected Mike as an ideas man. He was ambitious, and followed through on his grand plan, which is a lot more than I can say about a lot of people in the Chicago comed scene. He and Kyle started the club as a one-night-only thing, where the word “club” didn’t mean much, and elevated it to a level where locals were getting consistent, quality stage time. Later, I worked with Red Bar for the Just For Laughs fest, and it was a success.
I don’t know what really happened between Kyle and Mike, just as I don’t really know whether or not the hatchet between Mike and I was truly ever buried. But I hope it was. And however you probably feel about Mike David personally, it’s hard to begrudge the result of his work. So let’s see the Red Bar Comedy Club as the beginning of a push for quality Chicago comedy rooms and quality Chicago comedy talent. It’s a community of characters, no matter how odd their undertaking.