2017 Sarasota Improv Festival Groups

THE AVAILABLE CUPHOLDERS theatre ensemble is dedicated to producing experimental, enriching and entertaining improvisational comedy. The Cupholders aspire to explore and expose an art form cloaked in natural communication, believing Improv to be the theatre of everyday existence. Unlocking the power of this art form through live performance and various performative media, they strive to be on the cusp of a daring theatrical experience that takes place anytime, anywhere. Their goal is to elevate the form and playing field, shedding light on the ever-changing zeitgeist in which we live, with belly laughs along the way. "If you don't know Available Cupholders, you don't know improv." - Austin Chronicle

BIG BANG IMPROV Boston style free-form that has been wowing New England audiences and at festivals around the world for years. The entire set moves seamlessly from one scene to the next at the rate of over a scene a minute all following the group play philosophy of "follow the funny". The show builds rapidly and culminates in a series of surprising and organic callbacks done through the unique editing styling and story telling of this Boston super-team. This is a high-energy improv experience that redefines itself with every performance.

BLANK! THE MUSICAL made waves as the first improvised musical to run Off-Broadway at the internationally renowned New World Stages, receiving rave reviews from the notoriously discerning New York critics (including the New York Times). The creative team behind BLANK! The Musical represents some of the best and most experienced comedy minds in the country. Mike, Mike and T.J. have produced, directed, performed, written for and taught at The Second City, ImprovBoston, iO, Upright Citizen's Brigade, Comedy Sportz, The Magnet Theater, Norwegian Cruise Lines and more. Including the original Off-Broadway producing team, BLANK's collective resume includes work with Tony award winning composers designers, Broadway musicals, and some of musical theater's biggest names.

BROUHAHA Katie Dufresne and Stacey Smith create an entire improvised musical on the spot with the help of some fuzzy friends. With Mike Jim Prosser (FST Improv) on keys, the three get a title of a musical that doesn’t exist and proceed to show the opening and (sadly) closing night of that musical.


DAD'S GARAGE From Dad's Garage Theatre in Atlanta, GA, comes Improvised Vacation! Using your helpful suggestions, our family of three embarks on the most epic family trip of all time. Lifelong dreams will be realized, taboos will be shattered, ancillary characters created & murdered and someone might lose their virginity, just in time to head back home. Exactly like the family vacations from your youth!

DEAR AUNT GERTRUDE Since 2009, Dear Aunt Gertrude has kept audiences laughing throughout
Tampa Bay. This team loves improv and are continually using their witty invention to create fresh artistic concepts for their home stage at The Box Theater.  In the past they have had the privilege of opening up for The Upright Citizen’s Brigade Touring Company at the Palladium and have been a featured team with The American Stage Late Night Series. They were delighted to perform among other improv fanatics at The Orlando Improv Festival, The Gainesville Improv Festival, and The Tampa Improv Festival.  They couldn’t be more thrilled to return to The Sarasota Improv Festival this year for their 5th year. boximprov.com

EQUANIMITY  is a two person improv team based out of Unscripted Theatre in St. Petersburg, Florida. Highlighting the best and worst of close relationships and screwing around with trust and chemistry, Equanimity performs and teaches at festivals and events all over Tampa Bay and across the nation. ​

FST IMPROV Sarasota's Original Anti-depressant. FST Improv is the place to go when you're looking for some fun, need reminding that everyone is nuts, or if you have nowhere else to go. Taking what is right in front of them, in the form of audience suggestions, FST Improv creates characters and sketches on the spot. No one – not even the performers themselves – knows what is going to happen next. It is this element of the unknown that makes every Improv show unique –and what makes for some exciting moments onstage.

GRUPO COMPLOT/ESCENA The Complot / Escena Group is a multidisciplinary and independent theater company, which joins a group of artists graduated mostly from the School of Dramatic Literature and Theatre at UNAM (National Autonomous University of Mexico).Since its foundation in the year 2000, the group has developed its professional work in two main fields: the theater of author and the investigation within the technique of improvisational theatre: Improv.Complot / Escena has a wide national and international experience in the field of Sports Theater and Improv Technique since the group has been dedicated to the specialization and investigation of the technique for more than a decade. The company has been invited to showcase its work in several countries including: Argentina, Brazil, Colombia, Costa Rica, Chile, Guatemala, Peru, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Spain, Uruguay and United States.The artistic results of the company have echoed in other latitudes, which has resulted in the invitation to several important national and international festivals; The most important nationally, until now, the XXVIII and XXXI National Theater Festival, in 2007 and 2010; And at an international level, The Ibero-American Theater Festival of Bogotá, Colombia, in 2010 and 2012.Thanks to his research and work in the Improv technique, Complot / Escena is, today, the undisputed referent of improvisational theatre in Mexico (www.complotescena.com).

HAWK AND WAYNE Gavin Hawk and Ricky Wayne have performed longform improvisation together in residence at American Stage in St. Petersburg as the duo Hawk and Wayne for the past nine years, each year changing their show’s format. Their new show, Anywhere, USA, is presented in the Susan R. Hough Lobby every first Sunday of the month at 7:00PM. They have also co-created a successful longform improvisation training program at American Stage, which has produced two new house teams that now are also in residence at American Stage on every third Sunday of the month. For more information on shows and the American Stage Improv Training Program, please visit americanstage.org/improv/, and please like Hawk and Wayne on Facebook at facebook.com/hawkandwayne/.

IMPROVBOSTON For 35 years, ImprovBoston has been New England's leading theater and school dedicated to the art of comedy in all its forms. Voted "Best of Boston" by The Phoenix, The Improper Bostonian, and The Weekly Dig, ImprovBoston performers, teachers and students have included film stars, Emmy Award-winning comedians, and acclaimed producers, directors, musicians and writers. ImprovBoston alumni are featured on The Daily Show, America's Got Talent, Funniest Wins, Real Time with Bill Maher, Last Comic Standing, and John Oliver's Last Week Tonight, to name a few. In 2014, the Independent Reviewers of New England honored ImprovBoston with an award recognizing its longstanding contributions to the Boston theater community. As a nonprofit arts organization, ImprovBoston serves the community through laughter with youth outreach programs, workshops for businesses, scholarships, a national touring company and, of course, performances at its theater complex in Central Square, Cambridge.

JOE BILL AND FRIENDS Want to see an Improv Super team? Joe Bill and Friends features legendary improv instructor, Joe Bill, alongside handpicked all-stars of the 2017 Sarasota Improv Festival. Each show will be comprised of a unique collection of actors from around the country performing together for the first time in what is bound to be a uniquely hilarious evening of comedic improvisation.


JUST THE FUNNY  - Miami's Home for Improv and Sketch Comedy since 1999 is going to bring the heat with their award-winning "Miami-style" brand of longform improv comedy based on YOUR suggestions. Big energy, big fun and not for the faint of heart, Just The Funny is going to leave you begging for more!


NORTH COAST IMPROV North Coast is New York City’s premier hip hop improv comedy team. With a cast of improv comedy veterans in New York City, North Coast’s explosive performances have been packing comedy venues, universities, and festivals nationwide since 2009. Built around a single suggestion from an audience member, the show’s improvised scenes escalate into full-blown hip-hop songs, facilitated by resident beatboxer, Ethan “Exacto” Scott.


PARALLELOGRAMOPHONOGRAPH Since their premiere in 2005, Parallelogramophonograph has been more than just an improv troupe. Fiercely dedicated to the craft and art of improvised theatre, PGraph has performed a weekly show non-stop for over 11 years. Early on in their time together Kaci, Kareem, Roy, and Valerie knew they wanted to do something different onstage. Intrigued by the challenge of crafting fully-improvised stories together as an ensemble, PGraph spent years developing original formats and studying the arts of theatre, improv, and storytelling. They've toured the world performing and teaching their unique brand of improv with ensemble appearances in over 50 cities in the US, Canada, Australia, Spain, France, and the UK. The members of PGraph regularly teach, direct, and perform in shows at The Hideout Theatre in Austin, Texas. Find out more about them and their work, and their new book on narrative improv, Do It Now, at PGraph.com. 

SAK COMEDY LAB Nowhere else in Florida will you find a place like SAK Comedy Lab. Since 1991, our professional ensemble of improv actors has entertained audiences with our unique brand of live improvised comedy. We take your suggestions and make up characters, scenes and songs on the spot. Our comedy is fun and edgy for adults, but also widely enjoyed by our younger fans. SAK was a starting place for the careers of Wayne Brady as well as writers, actors and producers for Mad TV, Saturday Night Live, and sitcoms such as Scrubs, The Office, and 30 Rock.

SICK PUPPIES COMEDY has quickly become one of the premier improv companies in the state of Florida.  With over 20 cast members, 6 shows a month and multiple classes, Sick Puppies has a fun and caring community of improvisers that enjoy collaborating and performing together.


SQUARE ONE IMPROV puts you in the driver's seat for a hilarious, completely improvised performance! Every aspect of the show is based on your suggestions, including songs and musicals created on the fly! With years of experience performing and competing nationally, Square One delivers a gut-busting, one-of-a-kind show every time!


STACKED takes a suggestion of one word and delivers musical hilarity in four part harmony. With high energy, big characters, catchy songs and no apologies, Stacked is sure to take you on a wild ride.


THE THIRD THOUGHT is the longest running ensemble long form improv troupe in Tampa Bay, Florida. The Third Thought has performed in several festivals (Del Close Marathon, Gainesville, Miami, Tampa Bay) and is grateful to be returning to the Sarasota Improv Festival. The Third Thought performs narrative story telling.


VILLAIN THEATER is a improv, sketch, stand up, and devised theater company based out of Miami, FL.  The company is dedicated to cabaret style theater for everyone.  At Villain the work is completely uncensored so you never know what you are walking into but you can bet it will make you react and think! 

WHEN X MEETS Y Inspired by a location and three random notes on the keyboard, the cast of FST Improv's When X Meets Y, weaves a story of when two strangers meet, fall in love, fall out of love and then work for the future of their relationship. When X meets Y has been performing to sold out audiences in Sarasota, FL for the last year.