The History of The Buddy Club Children's Shows
The Buddy Club Children's Shows were born at The Other Cafe Comedy Club in San Francisco in 1987. The comedy club business was booming and the nationally famous Other Cafe was home to many of today's leading comedians,including Robin Williams, Jerry Seinfeld, Dana Carvey, Paula Poundstone, Elaine Boosler, Whoopi Goldberg, and many more.
After becoming a partner and manager of The Other Cafe, Scott Gelfand began producing children's shows at the club on Sunday mornings. They were an immediate hit. Parents loved to take their families to this famous comedy club for a one-hour show featuring the best children's entertainers from around the country.
In October of 2007, The Buddy Club was given a special Proclamation from Mayor Gavin Newsom and the City and County of San Francisco for 20 years of excellent community service and entertaining hundreds of thousands of Bay Area families. The Buddy Club celebrated its 20th Anniversary with a special FREE Family Appreciation Day ... a festival featuring the best talent in the Bay Area performing free workshops and shows! The press covered the event in large numbers, and the San Francisco Chronicle's Sunday Datebook wrote a feature article covering the event.
The mission of The Buddy Club is to provide culture for our families, to give parents and their children a chance to sing, laugh, and enjoy high quality live performances together.
The Buddy Club dazzles audiences from July through April in four locations: The Randall Museum Theatre in San Francisco, The Berkeley JCC Theater in Berkeley, The Hoytt Theater at The Kanbar Center for the Performing Arts in San Rafael and The Village Theater in Danville. Shows are targeted for children aged 2 through 12 and their parents. Show time is Sunday at 11am and 1pm -- times of the week usually set aside for families to enjoy each other's company.
The Buddy Club features the most talented family entertainers nationwide: magicians, jugglers, singers, clowns, ventriloquists, acrobats, puppeteers and more. Each show emphasizes audience participation and tons of laughter. Magicians with amazing illusions use rubber magic wands that break, jugglers impress their audiences with breathtaking balancing routines and drop all the balls, and singers with original, upbeat tunes get their ABC's out of order ("A bee stung me on my knee, h, i, j, k, elephants have fleas...").
The Buddy Club entertains over 100,000 families a year with more than 100 shows a year. The Buddy Club is known as today's hottest spot to have your child's birthday party. Each of our locations has attractive party spaces that sell out at every show. Performers are also hired for corporate picnics and holiday parties, school fund raisers, events at shopping malls, fairs and festivals, and a week of performing arts workshops at the City of Berkeley's family camp near Yosemite National Park.
What the Critics are Saying
"The Buddy Club is the hottest thing these days in children's live entertainment. Its typically sold out shows get raves!"
- Peter Stack SF Chronicle Datebook
"What the audience loves about a Buddy Club show is its participation in it!"
- Christina Eng The Oakland Tribune
"If the family that plays together is the family that stays together, then The Buddy Club is doing all it can to promote family unity."
- The Contra Costa Times
"If laughter is the best medicine for what ails you, The Buddy Club serves up a dose of fun!"
- Tuseda Graggs West County Times
"The Buddy Club shows are the Bay Area's most popular for children and families."
- Lisa Rosenthal SF Peninsula Parent
"The Buddy Club performers filled our tent and provided truly outstanding entertainment! They were captivating for all ages."
- Liebe Patterson Bay Area Discovery Museum
"The Buddy Club was wonderful! The shows were just as entertaining for the adults as well as for the kids. I will certainly look for opportunities to bring The Buddy Club to Larkspur Landing again!"
- Christine Shellenberger Marketing Director
"Party On! The Buddy Club birthday party package is fun and entertaining!"
- Jody Ryan SF Peninsula Parent
"Its rare to find live entertainment that is fresh and captivating, but The Buddy Club, a popular and fast-growing family entertainment outfit that showcases talented performers from around the
country, is just that!"
- Daniel Kurtzman The Jewish Bulletin
"A lineup of top talent and familiar headliners!"
- Jack Tucker Contra Costa Times Time Out
"What do you get when you cross show biz savvy with some of the country's best children's entertainers? The Buddy Club!"
- Berkeley Voice