News Column

Eleven improv troupes perform at Millibo Art Theatre

July 31, 2014

By Jen Mulson, The Gazette (Colorado Springs, Colo.)

July 31--7 and 9 p.m. Friday and Saturday, Millibo Art Theatre, 1626 S. Tejon St., $12 one show, $18 Friday or Saturday festival pass, $36 two-day pass; 465-6321,

Something free: Troupe members draw names from a basket and improv with other troupe members, 9:45 p.m. Friday; wrap party with karaoke, improv games and drinks, 9:45 p.m. Saturday

Improv comedy means nobody knows what's about to happen. They just hope it'll be funny.

Eleven improv comedy troupes, with 60-80 performers from Colorado, Austin, Texas, and Kansas City, Mo., are lined up for the fifth Colorado Improv Festival at Millibo Art Theatre. Shows run Friday and Saturday.

"What we'll perform has never been seen on stage," says festival organizer Kaleb Kohart. "And because it's improv, it will never be seen on stage again."

Kohart is one of the founders of The RiP, a local improv and sketch comedy group formed in 2005, and the producers of the Colorado Improv Festival.

The evening features 20-30 minute, PG-16 performances from troupes in both short-form and long-form comedy. Short-form improv is similar to games played on the TV show "Whose Line is it Anyway?" Long-form improv builds an entire 20-60 minute scene around suggestions from the audience.

The Denver-based, two-year-old Jane's Addiction (Improvised Jane Austen) is an all-female troupe that creates improv scenes ala Jane Austen novels. They've been a featured team at the Denver Improv Festival the last two years. They perform Saturday.

The group started when the five women weren't allowed to perform with Makeshift Shakespeare, a Denver all-male improv troupe.

"The plots are straightforward: Somebody needs to get married," says director Jessica Austgen. "It's fun to play with that structure, like what obstacles can we throw in the way of that."


Other events

Colorado Grown Festival -- Workshops, demonstrations, crafts and family-friendly activities, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Colorado Springs Pioneers Museum, 215 S. Tejon St., free, $10 workshops, $5 workshops for museum members, $30 unlimited workshops, $15 for museum members; 385-5631,


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Source: Gazette (Colorado Springs, CO)

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