From where will the next Chris Rock, Jerry Seinfeld or Sarah Silverman come? It’s quite possible that this new bright comic will be found at the DC Improv Comedy School Comics Showcase.
Held in the DC Improv Lounge on a Friday evening, not just anyone gets to take the floor (there is no stage). These stars-in-the-making first have to hone their craft in the DC Improv Comedy School—an intense program taught by a professional comedian—someone who actually makes a living doing standup comedy. And what happens when you’ve finished the classes? You have your graduation, doing a five-minute set in the “Big Room” before a real paying audience of everyone’s friends and families. Sure, folks will laugh for their friends, but what about you?
I confess. I am a graduate…in fact, a two-time graduate with about five years between the two graduations. Take it from me, those five minutes can either feel like five seconds or five years. I actually got laughs, applause and got a whole host of new, funny friends. And it’s positively mind-blowing to think that you are performing on the same stage that played host to Dave Chappelle, Kevin Nealon, Jerry, Chris and Kathy, just to name a few (I even wondered if I was holding the same microphone as Kathy—that made me sweat just thinking about it). But I didn’t have the intestinal fortitude to keep at it…to keep performing. For me, it was just too stressful.
But the folks I saw Friday, January 24, kept at it…and they were terrific. There were six performers, including my former classmate Leon Scott. All came with different points of view. Depending upon your taste, some were better than others—for me, Leon was one of the real standouts, but all were very good. With more gigs under their belts, who knows what can happen? And the whole evening just cost ten dollars…quite the bargain for getting in on the ground floor of promising new careers.
The DC Improv also holds improv classes with a graduation performance before a paying audience. I took several of those classes and had the thrill of performing with my classmates.
So, if you’re looking for an inexpensive evening out with the chance to discover new talent, take a look at the DC Improv. Maybe you’ll even be inspired to take a class yourself.
202.296.7008, 1140 Connecticut Avenue NW, WDC 20036
(One block north of Farragut Metro on Red Line)