Upcoming Shows

  • July 31, 2014 8:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
  • July 31, 2014 9:00 pmThe Comedy Attic
  • August 1, 2014 7:00 pmThe Comedy Works
  • August 1, 2014 8:00 pmThe N Crowd
  • August 1, 2014 8:00 pmCrazy Cow Comedy
  • August 1, 2014 8:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
  • August 1, 2014 9:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
  • August 2, 2014 7:30 pmComedy Sportz Philadelphia
  • August 2, 2014 8:00 pmCrazy Cow Comedy
  • August 2, 2014 9:30 pmThe Comedy Works
  • August 2, 2014 10:00 pmComedy Sportz Philadelphia
  • August 2, 2014 10:30 pmImprov Comedy: PHIT House Teams
  • August 7, 2014 8:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
  • August 7, 2014 9:00 pmThe Comedy Attic
  • August 8, 2014 7:00 pmThe Comedy Works
  • August 8, 2014 8:00 pmCrazy Cow Comedy
  • August 8, 2014 8:00 pmThe N Crowd
  • August 8, 2014 8:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
  • August 8, 2014 9:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
  • August 9, 2014 7:30 pmComedy Sportz Philadelphia
  • August 9, 2014 8:00 pmCrazy Cow Comedy
  • August 9, 2014 9:30 pmThe Comedy Works
  • August 9, 2014 10:00 pmComedy Sportz Philadelphia
  • August 9, 2014 10:30 pmImprov Comedy: PHIT House Teams
  • August 14, 2014 8:30 pmFigment Theater: Sessions @ Studio C
AEC v1.0.4

Check This Out: Figment Theater’s “A Series of Dangerous Fools” @ Vox Populi

FB-Event_Series-of-Dangerous-Fools We just added two shows to the calendar for Thursday and Saturday. The last nights of a run of shows called A Series of Dangerous Fools features improv from Thomas Fowler & Mary Carpenter, with special guests. Produced by Figment Theater and running at the Vox Populi gallery on 11th Street between Vine and Callowhill, Fools is $5 bucks at the door and has different featured improvisers each night.

On Thursday night, check out The Chain w/ Erin Pitts (Pitts invites a fellow improviser to play, who in turn invites another, initiating a chain of invites creating a one-night-only ensemble) and Slasher Sorority (sorority sisters Cait O’Driscoll, Corin Wells, Kate Banford, Kristen Schier & Kristin Finger are stalked by mysterious killers Joel Sumner & Thomas Fowler).

On Saturday, it’s John Hughes High Minisode 1 (the fictional world of John Hughes High is explored when Lucy [Kristin Finger] and Principal Hines [Kevin Regan] meet with an admissions recruiter from OSU [Thomas Fowler]), John Hughes High Minisode 2 - (Ox [Frank Farrell] and his father [Thomas Fowler] sit down for a meeting with Coach [Eoin O’Shea] to discuss some worrisome poetry that’s been uncovered), Fowler-Roney-O’Shea - (Thomas Fowler, Steve Roney & Eoin O’Shea unite for a special one-night-only set), and Origin Story - (Alli Soowal, Brian Ratcliffe, Eoin O’Shea, Joe Sabatino, Kelly Jennings, Kristin Finger, Mary Carpenter and Steve Roney and Thomas Fowler trace the origin of how a superhero is born).

You Should Call Your Parents: Cait O’Driscoll interviews Steve and Andrea O’Driscoll

photo 1Cait O’Driscoll: Ready, guys?

Andrea O’Driscoll (AKA Mom): Oh, here we go. We’re getting interviewed. I think I need a smoke first. So, you’ll have to wait.

Steve O’Driscoll (AKA Dad): Do I need to leave the room then?

AO: What?

SO: I thought we were doing it separately. I object. I want to do it separately.

AO: I’ll be right back. I have to get stoked for this.

CO: Do you think I’m funny?

(Laughter)

AO: It depends on what day it is.

SO: Monday, Wednesdays, and Saturdays. Not so much on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

CO: All right… That went well. Let’s move on.

AO: It depends on whether I’m being your mom, or going to see you in something.

CO: Was there a moment when I was growing up that you thought, “Hey, this kid might one day think she’s a comedian?”

SO: Yes.

AO: Every night at dinner from the time you were about… Oh, I guess a year… you would wait, everyone would sit at the dinner table, and you would stand up in your high chair and say, “It’s showtime.”

CO: Do you have anything else to add, dad?

SO: Always. Right from the beginning.

AO: Before you were even here, it was a joke. You were one of God’s little jokes. Should we get into that? Do you want to tell that story?

SO: No, don’t.

CO: Explain the Harold.

AO: Harold who? No. I know there’s beats. What do you know about it?

SO: What?

AO: The Harold.

SO: The Harold? I don’t even know what we’re talking about.

AO: The type of improv she does. There’s three sections and so many beats to each section, but I can’t figure it out from watching it. I need a drum to find the beats.

SO: Can I say anything about the other?

AO: Organic’s too noisy.

SO: I like it better than the other.

CO: How do you feel about improv?

AO: I like it. Some’s funnier than others. We can go back into that again…

SO: I think it’s really hard when you have 5 or 6 people on stage not to end up with one or two people who dominate… to be honest.

AO: I still don’t believe that you don’t use stuff that you did in rehearsal. If it’s failing and flailing and you have good stuff that you did in rehearsal. Why not use it?

CO: We don’t.

AO: Well, then I guess I just don’t get the rehearsals. But yeah, I like improv, I come see you all the time. Some nights are funnier than others, just like some days you’re funnier than others. I could have said it depends what side of the bed you woke up on.

CO: Do you have a favorite Davenger moment?

SO: I think there’s been a lot of funny moments. The only thing I can think of pointing to is always your first improv show is the best, because you don’t really know what to expect and it’s better than what you expect it to be. That’s the only way I can put it.

AO: The show where Hilary played Hans and you were in relaxation therapy, but you were afraid of rubber bands and they kept stressing you out with them; that was the therapy. Then you were doing bumper cars and Kevin made you kill a child, and the show ended with Hilary saying, “You’ve been Hans-ed.”

CO: When you brag about me to your friends, what’s the first thing you say? When answering, please remember this is a comedy article that all my funny friends will see (so maybe say something about how hilarious I am).

SO: I don’t know, I just say you’ve been performing on stage since as long as I can remember. What was she 7 or 8? And we’ve always enjoyed…

AO: I was always stunned when she started doing improv because I was always thought she was a drama queen.

SO: Oh no, I think she should do stand up comedy. That’s the natural extension.

AO: I’d always seen her in dramas and the first time I saw her in a role when she was funny, like overtly physically funny, all the physicality, expressions, timing. I was blown away by it. And the role in that play was dumb, so you took it to the absurd, and it was really funny.

CO: What do you think about me performing comedy?

AO: I’d like to see you push it more. You still look to me like you hesitate, and you allow other people to continue when I know there’s something hidden behind your little smile that’s probably funny.

SO: Well, I’ve always liked some of the more physical humor, like Dick Van Dyke, or people that do physical, Jack Tripper, people that do physical comedy. And I remember at the last show I went to, that was the remark I made to Dan the way, out of the blue, he does this contortion with his body. I think that the expressions and the actions are as important as what comes out of your mouth sometimes.

CO: Do you think I should try stand up?

SO: Yes. Absolutely. What are you waiting for?

AO: I think you should because I think you’re a good writer, and I think if you put your mind to it… but sometimes you’re lazy.

SO: A lot of people that do stand up comedy are afraid of the audience. A lot of them. I remember distinctly Johnny Carson was afraid of crowds.

AO: Oh boy, Dad’s gonna give you a history lesson. I think it’s hard for females. A guy can get away with any raw comment, but when a female does it…

CO: What do you think my opening joke should be?

AO: One time at band camp… No.vDon’t say the lawn mower joke, Steve.

SO: No, you don’t do jokes. You do more like something that happened to you on the way to the place… or…

AO: Let me tell you about my mother…? That’s always a good place to start. Here’s to the mothers, it’s their fault.

SO: You could open it with the two girls in diapers.

CO: What?

AO: No idea what you’re talking about.

SO: Dogs in diapers it’s a funny image.

AO: Oh, the girls.

SO: To me part of doing stand up is relating stories about people that you know.

AO: Well, God, you better know funny people than. She’s up shit’s creek then.

CO: Who’s your favorite comedian? Other than me guys, geeze, you’re making me blush!

SO: Uh, so I’m just gonna say you to get it out of the way then. Current comedian? Probably, Lewis Black. I like Seinfeld.

AO: I pick Robin Williams.

AO: Yeah, I like Robin Williams. Tina Fey and Amy Poehler.

SO: Oh yeah, Tina Fey.

CO: Anything else you want to add?

AO: I think you should push it. I think you should pursue it.

SO: You could create a character like um… what’s her name did… SNL… Gilda Radner.

AO: Oh, I know who I love, Gilda Radner’s husband, Gene Wilder.

SO: When you can develop something where you get into character, you can really go with it, rather than standing there and telling jokes, you can be in character.

AO: You do that well. I can see your acting experience. I like when improv has a connection to the acting.

Cait currently improvises with Philly Improv Theater house team Davenger directed by the amazing Maggy Keegan. She can also be seen in improv duos DupliCate and Mr. and Mrs.

If you are a Philadelphia-area comedian who’d like to interview one (or both) of your parents send us an email to contact@witout.net for more information. Go ahead, do it. You should really call your parents more anyways.

Fringe Show Review: twenty-four

Twenty-four is an improv show in real time. There are no cuts or edits, no jumps in time or space. All of the action takes place in one location in the same amount of time it takes to watch the show. The format leads to the actors being able to portray rich characters and develop deep relationships in the twenty four minutes they are together on stage. Last night, the cast of this Philly Improv Theater Fringe production put those skills on display expertly.

Twenty-four is a two act show, with the cast performing two separate monoscenes. Last night’s performance featured two halves that showed off the cast member’s range of styles and characters. The first scene took place in a hospital where a cast of characters all waited for their mutual acquaintance, played by Emily Davis, to give birth to her child. The story revealed a busy career woman, eager for her baby to arrive so that she may return to work and the people in her lives effected by her lifestyle. Her sperm donor (Mike Marbach) was curiously present at the hospital, while it was later revealed by her sister (Cait O’Driscoll) that there may be something more than just a one time donation going on. The future nanny of the child (Jessica Ross) handed out balloons and worried if she would be a good fit to take care of the child. The “facilitator” of the sperm donation (Bobbi Block) continued her role in the hospital as she calmed people down and was there to lend a helping hand in all the madness. The mother-to-be’s assistant (Becca Trabin) came to deliver a present from the office, and ended up delivering something far more important (the baby!) All the action took place while an in-over-her-head candy stripe (Corin Wells) raced around a hospital she seemed to be the only employee of.

The strengths of the first act were in the strong character choices made by the cast. Each improvisor brought their own idea to their character and stuck with it to the end. Emily Davis showed the non stop work ethic of her career driven character even in the last moments of pregnancy. Mike Marbach did his best to remain supportive of the mother of his child even while those around him questioned their relationship. Corin Wells was overworked and exhausted as the seventeen-year-old candy stripe just trying to get community service hours so she can graduate. Becca Trabin portrayed the do-all assistant of a powerful business woman hilariously, showing how prepared one would have to be to be the right hand woman of a non stop workaholic.

The second act begins with director Steve Kleinedler telling the audience that a character of their choice will return for the second scene, and all the other actors would portray someone new. Becca Trabin’s character was selected by one audience member, to cheers of approval from others. The second scene took place in a beauty salon while the patrons prepared for their prom, or “practice wedding” or were just there to have their hair done by the saucy salon staff. The first act of last night’s show had characters entering and exiting the scene fluidly, changing focus and centering on different relationships at different times while the second act had more convergence. The scene began will all but one character (Marc Reber‘s salon worker – who would soon enter) on stage. Most of the performers were all on stage and in the scene at the same time, and the cast members handled the crowded scene excellently. Most of the time the conversation took place between a few characters while the rest of the cast patiently waited, flipping through magazines, or styling hair – but a few times, the stage was full of action with multiple conversations happening at once. The performers were adept, not letting the conversations become just a jumble of noise, but speaking up and quieting down to let the audience key in on the funny parts of what they each were saying.

Twenty-four is a sharply put together show with a diverse, skilled cast of improvisors that will make you care about the characters, draw you in to this moment in their lives, and make you laugh along the way.

There are still three chances to see twenty-four, tonight at 5pm, Tuesday, September 13 at 7pm, and Friday, September 16 at 830pm. All shows are at the Mainstage of the Adrienne Theater. Tickets can be purchased online.