The biggest festival of our every growing but still small community is beginning soon and the question before hand is always what should I see, what should I do. I’ve reached out on the forums and FaceBook for that answer. Now, please keep in mind that I don’t know these troupes. I’m going to be concentrating a select few because to go through the entire schedule day by day, troupe by troupe is a daunting task. I’ll also only be going over out of town troupes because there’s plenty of information, and in many cases, opportunities to see local troupes. Also, I’m going to be concentrating on improv only. But please remember that there are plenty of amazing stand ups and sketch troupes for you to know and love.
Tuesday and Wednesday are only Austin troupes and they’re all amazing. You won’t go wrong seeing anything those days. Thursday I’d suggest the Risk! Podcast and the OoB Roast of Tim League. Why? Because live podcasts and roasts are both incredibly fun. Friday come and check out the live podcasts, A.D.D and TomFoolery, that’ll be recording in the Hideout Coffee house. Again, I love me a good podcast and live is even better. I’d also recommend the improvised standup and Rap-battle at the New Movement. Watching standups sweat because they can’t use their perfectly honed material is a joy unto itself. And give an improviser a good beat and a mic and watch a bit of magic. Nerdvana at the Hideout Theatre – upstairs was a suggestion I received on the Austin Improv forums. I don’t know much about them except what’s on the OoB website but it sounds interesting. They’re described as “focus(ing) on intelligent, sharp improvised comedy, never underestimating the audience.” Awesome, I love comedy that doesn’t placate to the lowest common denominator. I’ve heard amazing things about The Five Deadly Improvisers from San Francisco, CA who’ll be playing at the Hideout Theatre – Downstairs. They do completely improvised classic kung fu movies. How cool is that? I’ll tell ya. It’s very. All Star Maestro directly following is always a hoot and a half. You can never go wrong there. Or you can head on over to the Stateside for Jill Bernard doing Drum Machine. I’ve, unfortunately, never seen it myself but I have seen Jill Bernard improvise and it is something not to be missed. Incidentally, check out her improv workshop on Saturday. She and it will blow your freaking mind.
Saturday, I’ve been told I should not miss Middle Age Comeback and The Doubtful Guests both of which are playing at The Stateside at the Paramount. I don’t much about these two troupes but I can tell you that Todd Stashwick who plays with The Doubtful Guests is an amazing human being and improviser. He’s also teaching a workshop earlier that day on organic improv which I’ve heard nothing but transcendental things. He’s taught this workshop two other times in Austin and every time people walk away loving it. Also, while Mayfly is listed as an Austin show it’s creator is the aforementioned Todd Stashwick. You can see it at The Hideout Theatre – Upstairs.
Sunday are the headliners. This year rearrange your schedule to see Baby Wants Candy a musical improv troupe out of Los Angeles, CA. I’ve actually never heard of the before now but people keep shouting from the rooftops that you must see this show. And seeing as they’re headlining, you can’t go wrong. Plus musical improv when done well is absolutely amazing. Then if you missed them the first time you can watch The Doubtful Guests again. It seems Todd Stashwick is everywhere during this Oob which is awesome.
And then the sad last night of the festival will have the lottery show with Baby Wants Candy. Improvisers can put their name into the bucket for a chance to play with these illustrious improvisers. It’s always an amazing show.
So what I’ve outlined above is a fraction of what is going on during OoB. For more info check out the Out of Bounds comedy festival website at http://www.outofboundscomedy.com/about/ I hope this helped.