Polygon Comedy is a Philadelphia community arts organization devoted to building a thriving and sustainable comedy scene for area comedians. Polygon Comedy is working to raise awareness and understanding of comedy through publicity at regular performance opportunities, and outreach at quality venues.
We caught up with Polygon’s Rick Horner to ask him some questions about his ongoing run of Philly Fringe Festival shows.
WITOUT: Polygon is a new establishment in Philly comedy – tell us how you got started and the idea behind it.
RICK HORNER: The actual idea was born in Rosen & Milkshake – they wanted to be able to direct people, who came to see them in a show, to a clearinghouse website that would have info about all of the other improv groups in town, so when you look for Rosen & Milkshake you find out about Rookie Card, or Gross Butler for example. I just thought that since my overall goal/hope is to grow and nurture all of the talent in Philly, that having a little more organization around people, venues (to make them happy to embrace comedy), and having some idea sharing about what is and isn’t working to continue building the sketch/stand-up/improv community was worthwhile. Both PHIT and Comedysportz Philly are great at doing what they do for improv, this is something a little different – to spread the word around Philly about this ever-expanding group of folks, looking for good places to play. Polygon is geared for both audiences and performers alike. What is most important is that everyone gets a little more involved.
WO: How have the Polygon Fringe shows gone so far? Tell us about some of the groups you have had.
RH: There are so many shows to see during the Fringe! The focus is improv for the Fringe – and the shows have all been really great! A real eclectic mix of performers and crowds, and tons of people I have never met before – which is great for comedy in general. Let’s see – so far Polygon has hosted Angry People Building Things, Suggestical, One Night Standy, Vorlauf, Rosen & Milkshake, WhipSuit, The Ones Your Mom Warned You About, The Hendersons, Cubed, Neilsen, Rintersplit, and Hans Gruber. Really fun, energetic sets. Everyone who is doing improv, sketch and/or stand-up comedy should help generate promotion, and support for the comedy community.
WO: How has O’Neals been as a venue?
RH: They are great to us – great space, secluded on the third floor, it is a decent size room, and we have had a pretty full room (of 40!) It has been a real pleasure organizing this latest Polygon vemture. Up there and the audience has full access to both food and drink. Best bar in Philly, bar none. Great food, great people.
WhipSuit has been doing a monthly show on the third Friday each month for over four years now in the same space and graciously allowed Polygon use only during this Fringe.
WO: Tell us about some of the groups you have coming up.
RH: Friday, Sep 16th, 9pm: Beirdo, MEDIC! Grimmachio take the stage and on Saturday, Sep 17th at 9pm you can catch Gross Butler, Rookie Card, and Iron Lung. Terrific! If you come see a Polygon show for full price, you get a red ticket you can show at all future shows giving you admission for only $5!
WO: How do you see the Philly Improv Community growing? Would you describe it as a boom time for comedy in Philly?
RH: I think since the stand-up, improv and sketch communities started working more together – similarly to how other cities work together – we are starting to see some artistic success. Polygon should serve as a guide to let the public know what’s going on, and who is who helps get the community together.
Polygon aims to get most of Philly’s groups together and has been a great success so far, with a lot of the groups becoming closer and working together more. Also, having festivals really drives people out and has really helped. Each festival – Philadelphia Improv Festival, Philly SketchFest, Duofest and F. Harold – has showcased the best groups and talent in their scope, while exposing the community, and our audiences to different forms, styles and actors from all around the world.
There has never been a more exciting time for comedy fans as some of the funniest comedians are currently performing live all across Philadelphia. New comedy superstars along with comedy legends are currently available to see all around the area, so get tickets while they are still available. Spend your time laughing the night away with some of the funniest people around.
Polygon has two Fringe Festival shows remaining, Friday September 16th and Saturday September 17th at 9pm at O’Neal’s. Tickets can be purchased online.