JULY 17 Lineup!

Nothing lasts forever, even the staggering effects of Entertainmentatude. Alas, the Professor and Tallulah will be riding into the sunset, take a gander at this Monday’s final line up!

The S.H.I.T. Show

shitshow.jpgThe SHiT Show delivers the magic of sketch comedy via a sucker punch to the face. Come along for the ride, nerds!

 

 

 

 


Katya Smirnoff-Skyy

katyaThe Countess Katya Smirnoff-Skyy has enthralled Bay area audiences for years with her unique blend of opera pop and booze. With a career spanning …a very, very long time…..Katya claims to have invented Popera, romanced William Shatner, and lived next to John Lennon at the Dakota during her stint in New York City during the 1970’s. Once Eastern Europe’s greatest Mezzo-Soprano…understudy, the Countess now spends her days beautifying the masses at Macy’s Department store, as everyone’s favorite Chanel counter lady. She spends her evenings crooning and drinking her away through the finer theaters, bars and bath houses of America.


Leslie Small

image-uploaded-from-ios-e1499407274413.jpgLeslie Small is Bay Area native comedian and an absolutely wonderful person, especially if you ask her Mom. She practices the time honored tradition of comedy with one goal in mind: to be recruited by a gang of assassins. Since waiting for this she has performed in the NY She-Devil comedy competition, the Savage Henry comedy festival, the SF International comedy competition and in SF Sketchfest. She’s the coolest person you haven’t met yet.

 


Maggie Motorboat

maggieMaggie Motorboat is Burlesque dancer and entertainer currently performing with the Hubba Hubba Revue and the Fishnet Follies Classic Burlesque Revue.

 

 

 

 


Jason Bayani

jaybay.pngJason Bayani is a graduate of Saint Mary’s MFA program in Creative Writing. He is a Kundiman fellow and a veteran of the National Poetry Slam scene whose work has been published in Fourteen Hills, Muzzle Magazine, Mascara Review, the National Poetry Slam anthology, Rattapallax, Write Bloody’s classroom anthology–– Learn Then Burn, and other publications. As a member of 7 National Poetry Slam teams, he’s been a National Poetry Slam finalist and represented Oakland at the International World Poetry Slam. He is also one of the founding members of the Filipino American Spoken Word troupe, Proletariat Bronze, and has been an organizer for the Asian and Pacific Islander Poetry and Spoken Word Summit. His first book, “Amulet” was published in 2013 through Write Bloody Press and has garnered acclaim in literary magazines such as Zyzzyva and Glint. He is currently the program manager for Kearny Street Workshop (the oldest multi-disciplinary Asian Pacific American multi-disciplinary arts organization in the country).


 

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July 10 Lineup

WARNING: This weeks lineup may be too much good stuff, it’s true! We are obligated by law to let you , the dear viewer, know that the following acts on the same stage, on the same night may result in seizures caused by an overdose, an overdose…of entertainmentatude.


Featured Artist: Wonder Dave

dave.jpgWonder Dave is a writer, comedian and performer from Minneapolis, MN, now living in California. He has toured the country performing at poetry venues, schools, cabarets, science fiction conventions, burlesque shows, bowling alleys and independent wrestling shows. He has been a featured storyteller on the Risk podcast. Dave’s poetry has been published in anthologies by Write Bloody , Lethe Press, and Sibling Rivalry Press.

 

 


Special Guests


Syzygy

syzygySYZYGY is a beat-boxer and emcee internationally reknowned for his dizzying versatility, wildly inventive rhythm patterns and the ability to transform his voice into any instrument or personality.

A member of the Many Elements beat-boxing trio, he’s rocked the stage at the West Coast Beat-Boxing Championships, collaborating with legends such as Kid Beyond and America’s Got Talent finalist Butterscotch. He DJ’s shows with nothing but his mouth, a mic, and a loop-station at such shows as Tourettes Without Regrets and the Berzekely Slam.

 


Chad Opitz

chad

Chad Opitz is a comic whose unique takes on often odd subject matters are making him an oft booked staple at Bay Area clubs and showcases. Chad was the winner of Bay Area legend Jimmy Gunn’s “Best Newcomer” award as well as a finalist in the Rooster T. Feathers Competition, 2nd place finalist at the 2016 Sacramento Comedy and 1st place winner of the Walk the Plank comedy competition, beating out 100 comics for the top prize. He has opened for Neil Hamburger, Michelle Wolf and Gad Elmaleh. Veering between one-liners and short story jokes, Opitz’ writing is as well-regarded as his character and performance work.

Mistress Pon-Farr

tabby.jpgA performer and artist since her childhood, Mistress Pon-Farr, now uses her talents to entertain Earth with everything she’s got! Horror Host, writer, YouTuber, glass walker, whip tricks, burlesque/ gogo dancer, and social commentator. Fun fact: She will be doing this show on her way back from a living history event in LA where she plays Edith Roosevelt along side her husband playing Teddy.

 


Doug Mungin

doug

Utilizing comedy and engaging perspectives on social issues, Douglas Mungin (formerly known as D. Silence) is an award winning spoken word poet and performance scholar. The former host of the San Francisco Poetry Slam and underground phenomenon Tourettes Without Regrets, Douglas has also embarked on a career that has brought together raucous and literary crowds with a blend of rhythmic poetry that engages both. Douglas received a Ph.D in Performance Studies from Louisiana State University and is currently a professor of Communication Studies at Solano College and the director of the Forensics program.

 


Vagina Jones: Labia Minora

vagina

Vagina Jones (appearing tonight as Labia Minora) is the first all-woman team to be birthed from the EndGames Improv community, and now they’re all growed up. You’ve seen them at The Del Close Marathon in NYC, The Hollywood Improv Festival, and as regulars at SF Sketchfest 3 years running. VJ’s members are professional comedic actors, improv coaches and teachers, moms, and bad ass bitches. We’re ready for the revolution, and you are, too. To sync up cycles, like us on Facebook: www.facebook.com/vjimprov.

 


But wait, there’s more!


The Art of Drama with Anna Kritikos

DSC_3745_2_2 annaIn an attempt to class up the show, Every week, our resident renowned classical actor Anna Kritikos, will perform dramatic readings of classic monologues from stage, screen, and amazon reviews.

 


 

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July 12 Lineup

It’s time for round 2! On July 12, five new comedic warriors will take the field and swing their mighty swords of laughter. Read of the heroics and amazing feats of the next five plays that will fight to be THE FUNNIEST PLAY EVER. (Eventually…there’s a process)


“Demoted” by Bridgette Dutta Portman

brigitte

Bridgette Dutta Portman’s plays have been produced in the San Francisco Bay Area, across the country, and overseas.  Her short plays have appeared for multiple years in the San Francisco Olympians Festival, PCSF’s Sheherezade, the Pear Theatre’s Pear Slices, and PianoFight’s ShortLived competition. Her full-length comedy La Fee Verte was produced by Acadiana Repertory Theatre in Lafayette, LA in February 2016. Her full-length verse drama Caeneus and Poseidon premiered in March 2017 as part of the Second Stages series at Dragon Theatre in Redwood City, CA. She is currently president of the Playwrights’ Center of San Francisco, a founding member of Ex Nihilo Theater, and a member of the Pear Writers’ Guild, Theatre Bay Area (2015 TITAN award finalist), and the Dramatists’ Guild.  She is pursuing a low-residency MFA in creative writing from Spalding University.
Featuring Kyle McReddie, Charles Lewis III and Dorian Lockett. Directed by Christian Haines

“The Baes of Our Lives” by Meghan Kathleen O’Connor

trow

Meghan Kathleen O’Connor is a playwright based out of San Francisco. Her work has been produced by the Olympians Festival, FoolsFury, Berkeley’s Playground playwright incubator, and Killing My Lobster. She is also a proud and enthusiastic member of comedy improv team Chinese Ballroom, who performs the first Friday of every month at 10pm at PianoFight.

Featuring: Jan Gilbert, Matt Gunnison, and Juliana Lustenader. Directed by Colin Johnson

 


“The Pitch” by Sam Hurwitt

samhurwitt1

Sam Hurwitt is a freelance theater critic for the East Bay Times, Mercury News and Marin Independent Journal. His trilogy of plays about great women of Greek mythology (Helen, Penelope and Medea) had staged readings in the 2013, 2014 and 2015 San Francisco Olympians Festival. His short play “Moon Vixens” was produced as part of Pint Sized Plays this May, and his short horror comedy “Cereal Offender” will be competing in ShortLived at PianoFight immediately after this edition of (In Search of) The Funniest Play Ever. Like, the very next day! Everything’s coming up Hurwitt.
Featuring Claire Rice and Lucas Buckman. Directed by Anthony R. Miller

“Twinkie” by Emily Stapleton

emilyEmily Stapleton has had a passion for theater ever since landing her first major role as a singing cow in her third grade school production. She graduated with a Bachelor of Arts in theater from UCLA and spent several years in Los Angeles working as a stage manager, actor, production coordinator, prop designer, and sound operator at Garry Marshall’s Falcon Theatre. Since returning to the Bay Area, where she was born and raised, Emily has enjoyed teaching college undergraduate and high school courses in Theater and English as well as directing high school productions and creating original work with her students. She is currently pursuing a Master of Arts in Drama from San Francisco State University.

Featuring Emily Stapleton, Laura Peterson, and Alandra Hileman. Directed by Melissa Haines


“Beef, It’s What’s For Dinner” by C.P. Kenbridge

vinceCP Kenbridge is a playwright, poet, and activist  who works primarily out of Scandinavia and other places. Rurally self-educated, their work has appeared on posters outside Svenska Komedihuset (The Swedish Comedy House), in promotional material for the Annikki International Poetry Festival in Finland, and even in public venues. Kenbridge draws inspiration from their years living in isolation among fjords and the humor that stems from the sunless days of winter.

Featuring Jayme Catalano and Tavis Kammet, Directed by Jess Thomas

 


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Celebrity Judges for July 12

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Who are these people?

We searched high and low throughout the Bay Area and  our Facebook friends lists to bring you three experts in comedy, story telling and theatre. Not to mention good taste.

Miss If’n Whendy- Co-Artistic Director of DIVA or Die Burlesque
“Fart jokes are for rubes and children so quit sucking. YAY COMEDY”

Jeremy Cole– Writer, Director and Actor
“Comedy is like sex. Everyone loves it…but so few do it well.”

Nazelah Jamison- Nationally renowned Poet and Performer.
“Everything is funny if you look at it the right way. If it’s not funny from the front, walk around to the ass – you’ll find the funny.” 

Are they the judges for every show?

No, the judges will rotate from show to show, but expect to see them more than once.

How does this judging thing work?

After each play, the judges will give a short critique and present a score from 1 – 10 using decimal points to avoid a tie. The play with the highest cumulative score will go to semi-finals. Judges will base their score according to the  “Funniest Play Ever” criteria, which is comprised of:

  • Comedy
  • Clarity
  • Producability
  • Accessibility
  • Relevance
  • Strength of Voice
  • Originality

Is there any Audience Choice?

Funny you should ask, 2 plays will go to finals. One will be chosen at semis by the judges, the other will be chosen by the audience at semis. We also encourage the audience to let the judges know how they feel about the scores.

How can you assign a numeric score to art?

From 1-10 with decimal points, that’s how. Look, we know competition isn’t for everyone. We think this will be a fun experience for writers and audience members to get a real look at what Producers and theatrical artists look for when critiquing work, our goal is to encourage and develop, not crush dreams.


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June 26th Line-Up

Good Lord! How does The Professor (Talulah) do it? How does he (she) cultivate such a bounty of entertainmentatude upon the PianoFight stage? The world may never know.

Here are your purveyors of good times. for June 26th.


Featured Performer: Allison Page

allison.jpgAllison Page is a writer/actor/playwright/Artistic Director of San Francisco sketch comedy company Killing My Lobster. She is originally from northern, rural Minnesota, has been in the Bay Area for nine years, and spent most of her early 20s as a hairstylist trimming mullets in a Walmart. Her writing has been featured in Women of Letters, Write Club SF, Shipwreck, The SF Olympians Festival, SF Theater Pub and others. Her published works include HILARITY, a full length drama about comedy, and an autobiographical piece in Airmail: Women of Letters from Penguin Australia. Her commissioned full length play KILGALLEN/JONES had its world premiere in San Francisco at the EXIT Theatre in March 2017. She is currently writing a new one act play, THE TREACHEROUS to be performed in a high school competition in 2018. She is fascinated and terrified by politics. Occasionally she posts things on Medium @AllisonLynnPage.

 


Special Guests


DJ Real

djreal.jpgNick Stargu is a musician, comedian, writer and filmmaker who is best known for his multimedia / musical comedy act, DJ REAL, which has been featured at Outside Lands, San Francisco Sketchfest, Bridgetown Comedy Festival and more! He most recently appeared on the TV show “Flophouse” on Viceland and as a host on NBC’s show “The Guest List” on Seeso. And he’s opened for Devo!

 


Chey Bell

chey.jpgWhile Chey Bell’s comedy is best described as articulately scatter brained, brutally honest and uniquely clever. Touching on everything from family, drugs, jobs, sexuality to misspelled tattoos; it’s a wild ride of unbelievable life situations and self discovery. Since moving to Los Angeles from Silicon Valley, Chey Bell has performed at the infamous Comedy Store Comedy Club, Laff Factory and Flappers Comedy club and established a solid presence in the Los Angeles comedy scene. Having had more than 10 jobs ranging from the eclectic to the desperate, since moving to Los Angeles, Chey Bell brings a wide range of experiences making her act relate-able to almost every type of comedy fan.

 


Bobby Barnaby

bobbyHe’s a real handy dandy, and has appeared in over 20 international Burlesque Festivals. A member SF Boylesque, the first all male neo-burlesque revue in the US, and a recent graduate of the Clown Conservatory, the first, and most extensive Clown training program in America. He is The Shimmy Shocker!

 

 


Nazelah Jamison

IMG_2454Nazelah Jamison is a gifted poet, emcee, and vocalist who has learned from and graced the stage with some of the finest people in entertainment today. She has competed on and/or coached 12 National Slam teams; and has performed poetry & music across 3 continents. Until she retired (ha!) in 2014, she hosted and co-produced The Oakland Poetry Slam & Open Mic, an on-going monthly poetry slam in Oakland, CA, as well as performing at venues around the SF Bay Area and the country. She has collaborated on music recording projects with the Rondo Brothers, and is embarking upon a career as a stand-up comedienne. Her first collection of poetry, evolutionary heart, will be released by Nomadic Press in Fall 2016. Nazelah is well-known and beloved for her work with Spearhead and the French music group, Les Nubians, and her love of hip-hop translates onto the stage.

 


Mission CTRL

missionctrl

Mission CTRL is a sketch comedy startup based in San Francisco. After years of disruptive comedic innovation on stage and in video, Mission CTRL held their highly-anticipated IPO in 2011 to billions in projected revenues. They are repeat performers at SF Sketchfest and creators of the world’s first ballet-horror-comedy, Duck Lake.

“Mission CTRL ranks with the best of sketch comedy troupes: think Second City and early SNL,” (SF Examiner) and calling them “SF Sketch Legends” (TheLAist) and “seriously funny shit” (7×7).


But wait, there’s more!


The Art of Drama with Anna Kritikos

DSC_3745_2_2 annaIn an attempt to class up the show, Every week, our resident renowned classical actor Anna Kritikos, will perform dramatic readings of classic monologues from stage, screen, and amazon reviews.

 

 


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June 19th Line-Up

Oh my stars and garters! Once again Talulah  The Professor (But very much Talulah) has amassed a stockpile of laughter and merrymaking that will leave you walking out of PianoFight reeking, reeking… of entertainmentude.


Featured Performer: Magnoliah Black

MAGNOLIADancer, singer, MC, producer, betazoid and storyteller, Magnoliah Black breaks boundaries by blending modern movement and words with neoburlesque to create socially conscious pieces that add voice to marginalized communities and celebrates the human body.

This kinky, ecstatic, art activist and performer can be found all over the Bay Area with the nation’s longest running Queer Cabaret Show Red Hots Burlesque, Hubba Hubba Revue, Bad Influence Burlesque, Debauchery, Rebel Kings of Oakland and more.

For more information about upcoming shows, classes and events check out her blog https://theungratefulfatbitch.com/


Special Guests


Juliana Lustenader
jules

Juliana Lustenader is a local singer-songwriter and actress. Inspired by folk musicians like Laura Marling and Joni Mitchell, Juliana’s original music features her mezzo soprano voice and storytelling lyrics.

 

 

 


Jeremy Talamantes

talamantesJeremy Talamantes is half Mexican, half White and all the way funny. The day he dropped out of community college he solemnly swore to make others chuckle. This 26 year old Bay Area native is a working class slacker with a taste for the goofier things in life. He has traveled up and down both coasts of America playing anywhere from bars and cafes to theaters and comedy clubs in order to uphold his oath. Not only has Jeremy performed in SF Sketchfest and the International San Francisco Competition, he co-produces The Art Critique, a monthly comedy show where comedians make fun of thrift store paintings.


Juicy Liu

juicyJuicy Liu is a drag entertainment activist living in San Francisco. She is the current reigning Miss GAPA (Gay Asian Pacific Alliance), representing the GAPA Foundation, whose vision is to achieve a nationally influential API LGBTQ community that provides and amplifies our collective voices to promote equality and positive social perception. GAPA Foundation is a grassroots philanthropic organization that provides funds and leverages resources to empower the Asian/Pacific Islander LGBTQ community. Juicy regularly performs as a guest with the Rice Rockettes, an all-Asian drag troupe, as well at other shows in the City.


Jackhammer Serande

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Jackhammer Serenade has performed on the final stage showcase at IWPS 2009, toured nationally on three occasions at such prestigious venues as: NYC’s Nuyorican poetry cafe, Denver’s Mercury Poetry Cafe, The Richmond Poetry Slam, Hollywood’s Da Poetry Lounge and have performed a 30 min opening set for The Wailers at the Desert Rocks Music Festival. They are very happy to meet you and to share in the company of this conversation.

Currently Jackhammer Serenade is focusing primary efforts on running the 501 (c)(3) non profit, Digital Storytellers. An organization committed to bringing spoken word poetry and hands on film documentation education into schools around the bay area.


 

Quicksand Survivors

quicksand

Quicksand Survivors is a Bay Area-based sketch comedy group dedicated to entertaining the public while also educating them about the pervasive danger of quicksand. They also aim to raise awareness about the risks involved with putting too much detergent in the washing machine and the all-too-common pitfalls of switching brains with a loved one. Learn more on Twitter: @QuicksandComedy

 


But wait, there’s more!


The Art of Drama with Anna Kritikos

DSC_3745_2_2 annaIn an attempt to class up the show, every week, our resident renowned classical actor Anna Kritikos, will perform dramatic readings of classic monologues from stage, screen, and amazon reviews.

 

 


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June 12th Line-Up

The Professor  (Tallulah, actually) has done it again! He (She) has brought together yet another magnificent line up of performers to astound and amaze. Continue on to see your future, a future… of entertainmentatude.


Featured Performer: Mighty Mike McGee

mcgee

Mighty Mike McGee is a funny stand-up poet from San José, California. He’s performed his comedic storytelling and poetry in thousands of cities and towns for millions of ears throughout the U.S., Canada and Europe. McGee won all of the most coveted U.S. poetry slam titles and is one of the best known and liked people in the world of chatty writers. He’s been featured on CBC, NPR and HBO multiple times and takes pride in making people laugh and cry from the stage.


Special Guests


Chaki

chakiChaki has been making lofi gothic funk for over a decade!

The one-man funk punk of Chaki is not to be read about but to be listened about, or to, listened to.

https://chaki.bandcamp.com/


Ruby Gill

rubyRuby Gill has lived in San Francisco for over a decade. When she isn’t crying on the bus or swallowing paper clips in her cubicle at work, Ruby enjoys vomiting at bus stops, yelling at pigeons, and revealing her most embarrassing moments on stage for laughs. Ruby has performed at the San Francisco Punchline, Cobb’s Comedy Club, Throckmorton Theatre, and as a part of the SF Sketchfest, Desi Comedy Fest, Outsourced Comedy Tour, and 5 Funny Females. Along with having the distinct pleasure of roasting “Saved By The Bell” star Dustin Diamond, Ruby currently produces 2 showcases in San Francisco- Local Talent, Comedy Gold-and 1 in Oakland- Cat People.


If’n Whendy

whendyThey call her “The Queen of Face”, she’s the buxom redhead with a balcony you could recite Shakespeare off of! Ifn Whendy is a performer, Emcee and Producer in San Francisco and has been taking off her clothes in public (with varying degrees of security being called) since 2009. She’s performed with Los Shimmy Shakers at Viva Las Vegas, at Tiki Oasis, Los Angeles and all over the Bay Area. She’s co-Artistic Director of DIVA or Die Burlesque at the EXIT Theatre and has been a force behind theatrical/burlesque extravaganzas such as “Rebel Without A Bra”. She’s also a member of The Devil-Ettes, San Francisco’s Sweethearts and 1960’s Go-Go dance troupe, code name: The Wild One. Check out her filthy mouth and libidinous pleasures at www.ifnwhendy.com


Jenna Robinson

jennaAs the descendant of back-porch storytellers, Jenna Robinson is a poet and musician whose writing explores the intersections of inter-generational trauma and identity. She is a competitive member of the national slam community, holding two Hawaii Slam grand slam titles and placing second in the nation at the 2015 National Poetry Slam competition with Hawaii Slam. She is currently a member of the Berkeley Slam Team and an Expressive Arts Therapy graduate student at the California Institute for Integral Studies.


The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence

sisters

The Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence® is a leading-edge Order of queer nuns. Since our first appearance in San Francisco on Easter Sunday, 1979, the Sisters have devoted ourselves to community service, ministry and outreach to those on the edges, and to promoting human rights, respect for diversity and spiritual enlightenment. We believe all people have a right to express their unique joy and beauty and we use humor and irreverent wit to expose the forces of bigotry, complacency and guilt that chain the human spirit.

But wait, there’s more!


The Art of Drama with Anna Kritikos

DSC_3745_2_2 annaIn an attempt to class up the show, every week, our resident renowned classical actor Anna Kritikos, will perform dramatic readings of classic monologues from stage, screen, and amazon reviews.

 

 


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June 5th Line-Up

Come one, come all, marvel at the collection of talent from all the corners of the Bay Area assembled by the Professor himself and Tallulah. (mostly Tallulah, basically all)

Behold, your administers of entertainmentatude!

Feature: Irene Tu

irenetu

Irene Tu is a San Francisco based stand-up comedian, writer, and actor. A regular at the Punch Line, she was named one of the “Bay Area’s 11 Best Stand Up Comedians” in 2016 by the SFist and has been featured in numerous comedy festivals including SF Sketchfest, Limestone Comedy Festival, and Crom Comedy Festival. Irene hosts several popular shows in the Bay Area including Man Haters, Hysteria, and The Mission Position. You can follow her @irene_tu. irenetu.com


Special Guests


Syzygy

syzygySYZYGY is a beat-boxer and emcee internationally reknowned for his dizzying versatility, wildly inventive rhythm patterns and the ability to transform his voice into any instrument or personality.

A member of the Many Elements beat-boxing trio, he’s rocked the stage at the West Coast Beat-Boxing Championships, collaborating with legends such as Kid Beyond and America’s Got Talent finalist Butterscotch. He DJ’s shows with nothing but his mouth, a mic, and a loop-station at such shows as Tourettes Without Regrets and the Berzekely Slam.


Baruch Porras-Hernandez 

baruchBaruch Porras-Hernandez  is a writer, performer, host, storyteller, and regular KQED community events host based in San Francisco. He has performed in L.A., Washington D.C., NYC, Canada, and all over California. His writing has been published in numerous anthologies, has been nominated for a Pushcart Prize, he is a Lambda Literary Fellow in Poetry, Lambda Literary Fellow in Playwriting, he regularly organizes poetry shows in the bayarea, is currently the curator and head organizer for The San Francisco Queer Open Mic and is Program Director for ¿Donde Esta Mi Gente? He was born in Toluca, Mexico and grew up in Albany, California.


Vixi Vale

vixiVixi Vale is the lass with sass and smiles for miles, proving that big fun does come in small packages. She’s the co-creator of the upcoming Starlight Room Cabaret at the historic Sir Francis Drake Hotel, a member of Hunny Bunny’s Hot Toddies, the TrashKan Marchink Band, and the Mystic Midway, and a regular performer at Haus Serpens Quixotic Cabaret and Hubba Hubba Revue. Keep an eye on this little sprite of delight at vixivale.tumblr.com.


Joyce Lee 

joyce2Joyce Lee is a writer, educator and performance poet. Joyce is an Oakland, California native whose gift with words and expression have made her an international talent and a surprise to herself. Growing up ignorant to her own poverty and reared in a hyper-conservative religion that often silenced womyn is what made Joyce Lee the blunt activist and fierce womynist she is. Although Joyce was a late bloomer to performance poetry (she didn’t know it existed until 2008) Joyce Lee is the 2009 and 2010 Oakland Grand Slam champion, the 2014 Ill List champion, a story teller for NPR’s Snap Judgement and is working on her first book of collected writings entitled “My Soul Is A Witness”.


Chinese Ballroom

chineseballroomChinese Ballroom is a San Francisco-based improvisational comedy team, specializing in both long and short form improvisation. The year was 2008, when the group was brought together by one woman. When that woman flaked and stopped coming to practice, the team rallied around the one thing they had in common, a Chinese Ballroom. The ballroom, with its dark mysticism, allowed the team to love, hate, laugh, cry, and eventually grow together. The physical ballroom is long gone, but the real ballroom remains in the hearts of these seven men and women.


But wait, there’s more!


The Art of Drama with Anna Kritikos

DSC_3745_2_2 annaEvery week, our resident renowned classical actor Anna Kritikos, will perform dramatic readings of classic monologues from stage, screen, and amazon reviews.

 


web buttons-07web buttons-08web buttons-09web-button-buy-

 


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Celebrity Judges for May 10

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Who are these people?

We searched high and low throughout the Bay Area and  our Facebook friends lists to bring you three experts in comedy, story telling and theatre. Not to mention good taste.

Sara Moore– Director of the Clown Conservatory at Circus Center in SF.
“Comedy is a doughnut for the soul”

Rob Ready– Artistic Director at PianoFight.
Comedy is: “Just say it,” said Anthony, “I came to you.”

Nazelah Jamison- Nationally renowned Poet and Performer.
“Everything is funny if you look at it the right way. If it’s not funny from the front, walk around to the ass – you’ll find the funny.” 

Are they the judges for every show?

No, the judges will rotate from show to show, but expect to see them more than once.

How does this judging thing work?

After each play, the judges will give a short critique and present a score from 1 – 10 using decimal points to avoid a tie. The play with the highest cumulative score will go to semi-finals. Judges will base their score according to the  “Funniest Play Ever” criteria, which is comprised of:

  • Comedy
  • Clarity
  • Producability
  • Accessibility
  • Relevance
  • Strength of Voice
  • Originality

Is there any Audience Choice?

Funny you should ask, 2 plays will go to finals. One will be chosen at semis by the judges, the other will be chosen by the audience at semis. We also encourage the audience to let the judges know how they feel about the scores.

How can you assign a numeric score to art?

From 1-10 with decimal points, that’s how. Look, we know competition isn’t for everyone. We think this will be a fun experience for writers and audience members to get a real look at what Producers and theatrical artists look for when critiquing work, our goal is to encourage and develop, not crush dreams.


web-button-lineupweb-button-submitweb-button-buy-

May 10th Lineup

Here they are, your first five flippin’ hilarious gladiators of comedy. Each play will be assigned a director and a cast, they have one week of rehearsal time.

Unleash the Kraken of funny.


“Never Ever Land” by Sang S. Kim

***WINNER of Round 1***

sangheadshot

Theorizing that one could write legitimate sketch comedy that would never be called “skits” in his own lifetime, Sang S. Kim awoke to find himself in the Bay Area, suffering from periodic writer’s block and facing a mirror image that unfortunately was actually who he really was. Trapped in independent theater, Sang Kim finds himself leaping from theatre to theater, putting things right, that once went wrong and hoping each time, that his next leap will be the leap home.

Featuring Matt Gunnison, Jan Gilbert and Charles Lewis III. Directed by Colin Johnson 

“Twilight Zone” by Spencer Bainbridge

spencerheadshot

Spencer Bainbridge is a native of Northern California and believes sandwiches should always be toasted, no question. His work has been featured in Shipwreck, The Mess, SF Sketchfest and SF IndieFest. He does not currently have any pets but is open to suggestions.

Featuring Kyle McReddie and Jayme Catalano. Directed by Jess Thomas

 

 


“Holy Toledo” by Susan Jackson

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Susan Jackson received the Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award for Best Original Play; it won “top ten” with the SF Fringe Festival. Her plays have been staged- read/produced in New York City, Off-Broadway: (Altruistic Theatre Company, LTM Audio Players, and Manhattan International Festival), Bay Area, Eugene O’Neill Foundation, William Inge New Works Festival, Sydney, a London Pub, and South Carolina. Her plays have been semi-finalists for Fusion Theatre Company and South Carolina Centre Stage. SAMARITAN was a finalist for the Henley Rose Competition for Female Playwrights. She’s a Resident Playwright for 3Girls Theatre Company.  DEATH BE NOT LOUD! won Best of Fringe in the CAPITAL FRINGE. A monologue for TAKEN was selected for publication in BEST WOMEN’S MONOLOGUES FOR 2017.
Featuring Dorian Lockett and Andrew Chung. Directed by Melissa Haines

“Spycraft” by Claire Rice

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Claire Rice is sitting behind you in the dark somewhere and she is judging your hair cut. Her plays include Sex in the Next Room, Woman Come Down, The Carmine Lie, It Ain’t Me, Water Line, Demeter’s Daughter, Pride and Succubus, Ares and Eris, Cassandra, The Effects of Ultraviolet Light, and Choose Your Own Apocalypse. Her most recent play, Purity, was produced as part of Awesome Theatre’s Terror-Rama 2: Prom Night. She has also been lucky enough to have short plays featured in San Francisco Olympians Festival, Pint-Sized Plays, Shotz SF, and Llama Theater’s Monthly Question series. Claire graduated from Eastern New Mexico University with a BFA in Performance before moving to San Francisco to earn her MFA in Playwriting from SF State.  She is currently working on My Cannibal Summer for Awesome Theatre’s Terror-Rama 3 and an untitled radio active monster play for Quantum Dragon Theatre Company. She lives and works in San Francisco with her wonderful husband.

She also thinks it’s weird she wrote this in the third person.

Featuring Meghan Chambers, Katie Meinholt and Lucas Buckman. Directed by Christian Haines


“I Wanna Be So Dated” by Maury Zeff

Maury headshot (3) MAURY ZEFF is a playwright and fiction writer whose play COME AND KNOCK ON OUR DOOR premieres May 11 in the Best of PlayGround 2017. As a PlayGround company member, he has received two Emerging Playwright Awards, four People’s Choice Awards, and a 2017 Fellowship. His plays and fiction have been performed and published around the country. He is a SF Writers Grotto Fellow, a co-founder of the Babylon Salon reading series, and has a MFA from the University of San Francisco. He comes from a family in which Scrabble is a bloodsport.

Featuring Kyly McCurdy and Puja Tolton. Directed by Anthony R. Miller



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