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24 Non-Consecutive Hours of Improv

The important point of this blog

the Improv A Thon will now be 24-ish non-consecutive hours due to restrictions limiting the hours we can even be inside our own building.  There’s so much about that sentence that makes me furious but we have important things to cover….

Our beer and wine license (not just ours, any beer and wine license) mandates that the building be emptied from the hours of 2am-8am.  That means not even HUGE staff can be in the theater, not even if we’re locked up, closed to the public and performing for a camera that streams the event out online. Believe me, we have been trying to find an answer other than changing one of the most fundamental parts of the event.

The Improv A Thon will now run:

Tuesday the 15th, 10pm – 2am

We will vacate the theater as required until 8am

Shows resume at 8am Wednesday morning and will run until Midnight.

Please be patient with us as we completely overhaul an event on short notice.

If you would like to get some of the background of the problem, you’re welcome to read on.

If not, we will see you on Tuesday night for a massive night of fundraising for HUGE Theater.  Come help us crush Give To The Max Day.  We will make you laugh so hard you will beg for death.

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We're a MN Original!!

HUGE Theater is going to be on an episode of TPT’s MN Original, a public television show that highlights local artists and arts organizations.

Date       Time        Channel

11/6/2011  6:00 PM     2

11/6/2011  10:00 PM    Life

11/7/2011  4:00 AM     Life

11/7/2011  7:00 PM     SW MN

11/8/2011  1:00 AM     SW MN

11/8/2011  7:00 AM     SW MN

11/8/2011  1:00 PM     SW MN

Our story and the full episode will also be posted on mnoriginal.org with additional content, web exclusive videos, more background and links to MN Original artists.

Hooray!

GUEST BLOG: Hannah Kuhlmann's Top Ten Tips for Promoting Your Improv

[We asked some local experts for their top tips on promoting improv shows.  This week’s tips are from Hannah Kuhlmann, who has worked and performed with various Twin Cities improv troupes since 2003. She teaches and directs at Huge Theater, and can currently be seen in Creature Feature and Show X and with the other two members of Splendid Things, Saturday nights at 9:30 pm through the end of October.  Hannah is also the mastermind behind many of our most exciting HUGE Theater postcard designs.]

Here are my top ten tips for promoting your improv. Do this stuff, do it early and do it right… so you can spend your time improvising instead.

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GUEST BLOG: Tom Reed's top 10 ways to help improv take over the world

[We asked some local experts for their top tips on promoting improv shows.  This week’s tips are from Tom Reed who, in addition to being a brilliant improvisor, wrote and performed wildly successful one-man Fringe shows Harry Potter and the Half-Drunk Twins, Bite Me, Twilight, and Disney Dethroned: Snowcahontas and the Tangled FrogBeast.  Tom Reed blogs at www.frecklemeat.com and can be seen regularly at Comedy Sportz, Brave New Workshop and as crooning sensation Lounge-asaurus Rex.  Thanks for these wonderful tips, Tom!]

I want everyone in the whole world to love improv as much as I do. The first step is getting the whole world to an improv show. Based on my experience, here are 10 tips that will eventually lead to improv world domination, or at least a few more people at our shows. You gotta start somewhere!

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GUEST BLOG: Max Sparber's Top 6 Tips for Improv Promotion

[We asked some local experts for their top tips on promoting improv shows.  The first to reply was renaissance man Max Sparber.  He’s a playwright, the lead singer of the band Ultramod, a blogger  for MinnPost  He was editor in chief ofThe Omaha Reader, but we first met him during his three years as the theater critic for City Pages, where he was one of the only local critics to ever review improv.  Thanks for these great tips, Max!]

People underestimate the importance of promotion. I worked for years with an Omaha theater company that put up posters and hoped for good word of mouth, and, as a result, got small audiences. I find it helps to think of promotion as being similar to sending out invites to a party. If you haven’t bothered to tell anybody about the party, there is a good chance they won’t show up.

With this in mind, the first step is to get the word out in as general a way as possible. And so here’s tip one:

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You'll never see me frown…and I'll be with you when the deal goes down.

the state of things at HUGE

It’s almost the end of the month, which means it’s time for another Rent Party!

Josh rightly pointed out at the last Rent Party that everything we do at HUGE is to make the rent and we should really just party together all the time.  I happen to agree – but the final Friday of the month is “officially” Pay What You Can night and Rent Party!

Seems like it’s worth updating the state of HUGE – last time I posted where we were it was all doom and gloom.  People’s reactions were varied but everyone was incredibly supportive and appreciated the openness with which we’re able to handle being in some serious trouble.  We can still be open, even about diminishing trouble and I want to still be very careful about how I phrase things to avoid giving people the idea that we are not depending on support still.  We very much are.  While my tone may be lighter these days, I am never joking when I say that HUGE Theater depends on you.  We are doing everything we can but have to issue the call for help as the end of the month nears – but this blog will include some good news and hopefully some encouraging signs.

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Any way you want it, it's the way it will be

Butch is going to write another blog entry, but he hasn’t yet, so I thought I’d write a pre-blog entry. I just invented that, it’s an new thing. The essence is this: HUGE Improv Theater is your theater. It belongs to you. If we wanted it to belong to us, we would’ve founded a for-profit theater and called it “Butch Roy’s Improvatorium.” We did not do that. We opened your theater and called it HUGE so that you’d know it was a big deal.

If she wants to help the cause, tell her we need sterile gauze

Hey folks – WE DID IT!

Thanks to the donations to the Virtual Rent Party to the tune of $1800, the incredible contributions on Friday in response to the Pay What You Can shows to the amount of $2400 and an evening of drinking, dancing and donating – and the $1000 bonus pledged by our landlord – HUGE Theater made the rent.

Thank you, thank you, thank you.  I cannot say it enough.  Thank you.

Many of the donations came from the very people we hope to be able to pay for performing on our stage, people that have already put in countless hours producing shows and helping promote HUGE every day – while it weighs on me a bit to know that we are taking funding from people we should be giving it to, we are in no position to turn away any help we can get.

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