The 10 Highest-Grossing Comedy Tours of 2023

How much bank did your favorite comic make last year?
The 10 Highest-Grossing Comedy Tours of 2023

When it comes to comedy concerts, it’s hard to make apples-to-apples comparisons to other genres (specifically, music). Only the top three artists on Billboard’s year-end list of the top-grossing comedy tours of 2023 earned a spot on the top 100 of all concerts overall. But that doesn’t mean the biggest comics aren’t making bank. While no comedians are charging Taylor Swift prices, they also don’t have her overhead. “With smaller traveling production, touring comedians have simpler stage setups. That can allow them to float from theaters to arenas and from amphitheaters to clubs from night to night,” notes Billboard. “They can also perform multiple shows per night without the physical and vocal tolls of headlining pop stars.” In other words, the top acts are cashing checks like crazy. 

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The Surprising Misses

Billboard notes that some of the regular comics on lists like these, such as John Mulaney and Hasan Minhaj, dropped off due to lighter tour schedules in 2023. Sebastian Maniscalco, who topped Pollstar’s list of top-grossing comedy concerts in 2022, fell to #8 on Billboard’s ranking for 2023. Don’t feel too bad for the guy, though — he played 39 shows to the tune of $16.8 million. 

The Brits

Ricky Gervais made a lot of noise on his Twitter feed this year about breaking Guinness Book records for the single most profitable show of all time. 

And yet, he’s nowhere to be found on Billboard’s list. Instead, fellow British comedian Peter Kay made the list at #6, raking in $20.5 million by playing dates almost exclusively in England. 

The Newbies

While neither Taylor Tomlinson (#7 at $17.5 million) nor Nate Bargatze (#5, $20.6 million) are comedy rookies, their careers have stepped up to A-list level in the past couple of years. Both comics turned their newfound success into high-profile gigs: Bargatze landed an Amazon special (Hello, World!) and Saturday Night Live hosting spot; and Tomlinson is the new face of CBS late night, hosting the @midnight revival.

The Usual Suspects

The rest of Billboard’s top 10 list is made up of the genre’s touring superstars:

  • #10 Jo Koy, $13.4 million
  • #9 Adam Sandler, on the road for the first time in years and shoving $14.2 million into his pockets
  • #4 Bill Burr showed up at #4 for the second year in a row, earning $20.6 million
  • #3 Bert Kreischer played the Iron Man game with 80 shows and $32.9 million (surely enough to buy some shirts)
  • #2 Dave Chappelle, playing 60 fewer dates than Kreischer but still taking in $36.6 million
  • #1 Kevin Hart, killing it with 82 shows and $67.5 million. That’s about what Chappelle and Kreischer did combined, enough for Hart to rank #29 among all artists regardless of genre. Just think what he could earn if he wasn’t challenging NFL players to foot races
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