Jacob’s Eye On….The KC Improv Festival 2012

2012 Kansas City Improv Festival

Join VH1’s Paul F. Tompkins, Colin Hanks and countless of Improv experts as they provide laughs for the 2012 Kansas City Improv Festival. (Photo by the Kansas City Improv Festival).

By: Jacob Elyachar

Haven’t laughed in a while?

The Kansas City Improv Festival can easily fix that problem with a remedy that contains watching five nights filled of high-octane laughs.

Before the Kansas City Improv Festival became the giant festival that it is, it originally started out in the mid-1990s where Improv comedy was becoming popular all to a little British show called Whose Line Is It Anyway.   While the U.S. show launched the careers of Wayne Brady, Colin Mochire and Drew Carey, Kansas City was already used to seeing their local chapter of ComedySportz entertain them since 1987.

However, there were multiple groups in different cities across the country that did not interact with each other until Spontaneous Combustion, the original Kansas City Improv Festival.    This event brought in teams from Minneapolis, Iowa and Lawrence together to do comedic battle in Kansas City.   One year later, other troupes including Boulder, Seattle and Chicago began to get involved.

While the laughs continued, life happened and things began to slow down for everyone’s favorite comedy festival.   However, five years ago, City 3 Project began to rekindle the Kansas City Improv Festival by focusing on the city and the local talent.    Some of the names that have performed and participated in the festival include Saturday Night Live’s Jason Sudekis and 30 Rock’s Jack McBrayer.

This year’s special guests include VH1’s Best Week Ever host Paul F. Tompkins, Dexter’s Colin Hanks, Second City Chicago alums Tim Mason, Tom Flanigan and Andy St. Clair.   Also joining in the fun will be eight local Improv groups including Comedy City, Chess with Death and the hosts of the festival: the KC Improv Company.

In addition to all of the shows, the festival also invites people to learn more about the art of Improv comedy.   There will be dozens of classes happening on both Saturdays and are divided up into four different levels: beginner (someone with no experience of Improv), newish (someone with two years under their belt), experienced (more than two years of Improv experience) and finally, veteran (someone with over five years of experience).

A portion of this year’s proceeds will go to Gilda’s Club KC.   This is a chapter of a national charity named after one of the founding women of Saturday Night Live: the legendary Gilda Radner.  Gilda’s Club helps supports and comforts men, women and children who have been diagnosed with cancer.

For more information about the KC Improv Festival, click here: http://kcimprovfestival.com/index.php

To learn more about the Kansas City chapter of Gilda’s Club, click here: http://www.gildasclubkc.org/

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Copyright 2020 Jacob Elyachar