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Del Close Marathon 14 – 10 Must See Shows on Friday

June 25, 2012

1. Doppelganger – New York City (6:30 PM – UCB Theatre)

This New York City indie group rocked the marathon last year in essentially the same time slot. The group is made up of three of the funniest female improvisers on the New York scene – Nicole Byer, Sasheer Zamata, and Keisha Zollar. Their style is a fast-paced montage with organic edits incorporating different emotional sounds and physicalities to transition between scenes. The chemistry they have creates a flow that is incredibly silly and fun. Must see!

2. Bassprov – Chicago (7 PM – UCB Theatre)

Hailing from Chicago, this duoprov group is a mainstay at the Del Close Marathon and in many other improv festivals around the country. Composed of legendary Chicago improvisers Joe Bill and Mark Sutton, Bassprov is a show that centers on the concept of two guys having a conversation while fishing, showcasing the characters opinions, perspectives on life, and past histories. The format is a straight up monoscene often featuring guest stars such as Matt Walsh and Scott Adsit. Definitely check this one out and you may catch some famous guests!

3. Sentimental Lady – UCB LA (7:30 PM – UCB Theatre)

One of UCB LA’s top house teams comes into the Del Close Marathon with a similar time slot as last year, where they destroyed. Composed of all the members of Convoy, as well as Mel Cowan, Suzi Barrett, Johnny Meeks, and Joel Spence, Sentimental Lady showcases their quick wit with a sense of patience and impeccable listening. Their format consists of a base monoscene that they use as a jumping point to fun quick montages. After the montages they time dash back to the monoscene and continue this pattern. The fusion of these two forms creates a sharp contrast and emphasizes the talent this group.

4. Junior Varsity – Magnet Theatre NY  (8 PM – UCB East)

Hailing from New York City, Junior Varsity was founded by Armando Diaz as a house team at the Magnet Theatre, where they still perform every Thursday night. It is composed of some of the most seasoned improvisers in the city including Kevin Cragg, Shawn Wickens, and Jarret Berenstein. In addition to being a mainstay at the Magnet, they are known for being a touring group, having performed at festivals all over the country. If you are a fan of New York comedy, Junior Varsity is a must see.

5. Popular Science – iO West LA (8:15 PM – Urban Stages)

Made up of some of the most up-and-coming performers at iO West Theatre in Los Angeles, Popular Science fuses relationship based improv with quick game play. The group won Best DCT Show in 2010 and 2011 at the Del Close Awards. While iO West has sent only a few teams to the marathon this year, definitely check out Popular Science to get a good idea of the talent housed there and the difference in style.

6. The Stepfathers – UCB NY (9 PM – UCB Theatre)

One of UCB NY’s oldest house teams comprised of some of New York’s most seasoned improvisers and teachers at the theatre. The group features veterans Chris Gethard (The Chris Gethard Show), Michael Delaney (The Swarm), Zach Woods (The Office), Shannon O’Neill, Will Hines, Silvija Ozols, and Connor Ratliff. Join them as they explore things to their extremes. Highly recommended for improvisers who want an example of potent realistic comedy with the UCB brand on it. Smart, fearless, and brutal.

7. The Premise Keepers – Los Angeles (9:30 PM – UCB Theatre)

Being Matt Besser’s indie troupe, last year this show tore the roof off the mainstage. Featuring Chad Carter, Joe Wengert, Katie Dippold, and Alex Fernie, this group showcases some of the best game players in the world and is some of the quickest improv you can find on the planet. The group takes a one word suggestion from the audience, a member of the group tells a quick anecdote, and they launch into scenes that pull premise clearly from the story. Smart, quick, clear, and brilliant! The Premise Keepers are a must see.

8. Revolver – iO Chicago (10 PM – UCB Theatre)

Hailing from the famed iO Chicago Theatre, Revolver is one of the top Harold teams in the nation that brings high energy and strong characters every time they grace the stage. Made up of some of Chicago’s best improvisers including SNL Cast member, Vanessa Bayer, Revolver does strong Harold’s that are about as connected as I’ve ever seen them. Their trust and support is evident in their slow building to climactic third beats. Moreover, I have never seen a group that looks like they’re having this much fun on stage. See them and remember how much fun improv can be!

9. Bruckheimer – Los Angeles (10:30 PM – UCB Theatre)

Three hilarious dudes, doing a monoscene. Bruckheimer is a legendary group consisting of Paul Scheer (The League), Chad Carter (The Premise Keepers), and Owen Burke. Carter is one of the best game players in the world, while Scheer and Burke are strong with characters as well as being well-averse in game play. Watching this slow build to insanity is an experience you will want to have!

10. ColdTowne Theatre Tourco – ColdTowne Theatre Austin (10:30 PM – Hudson Guild Theatre)

Austin’s premiere improv theatre sends its touring company to DCM again, comprised of the best improvisers from its different house teams. Their form is grounded in the Harold structure featuring very gamey beats that play like a montage.  The pace is quick and they nail premise with consistent heightening. ColdTowne has been to many different festivals across the country and is definitely a hidden gem on the schedule. Be sure to catch them!

From → Comedy

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