Improvathon / Give to the Max Day 2013 FAQs

What is Improvathon?

Improv-a-thon is a 28-hour improv marathon fundraiser benefiting HUGE Improv Theater. It is timed to coincide with GiveMN.org’s Give to the Max Day, an annual statewide day of giving, on Thursday, November 14.

When is it? What is the schedule?

Wednesday, November 13 at 7:00 – 8:00pm
Kick off event at HUGE

Wednesday, November 13 at 8:00 p.m.
28-hours of Improvathon shows officially begin at HUGE.

Thursday, November 14 from midnight until 11:59 p.m. the following day
24-hours of GiveMN.org’s Give to the Max Day

So that’s it? 28-hours of improv and fundraising?
Basically! But it ends up being much more. It is a chance for the larger community – students, performers and audience — to get together. In years past, the Improvathon has been the impetus for brand new groups to form. It is also an important opportunity for many students and performers to get on stage and show their friends and family – inside and outside the Twin Cities — why improv and HUGE are important to them.

Plus, any team can tag in founding artists Jill Bernard and Butch Roy to join them on stage at any point during the Improv-a-thon.

Also, there are amazing people who sign up to be Iron Audience members and watch 24-hours of improv. These intrepid souls form the backbone of the audience, especially at 3:30 in the morning, and support performers.

And this just in: We’re working on way to stream the performances live so that friends and family outside the Twin Cities can watch shows.

I’m uncomfortable with fundraising, but I want to perform. Can I just sign up for a performance time?

Yes and no. Improvathon is HUGE’s biggest annual fundraiser. We are asking each performance time to try to raise at least $300. In years past we haven’t specifically asked groups to fundraise as part of this event, but it is very important to us. This is part of my hope and vision that Improvathon could raise $25,000 for HUGE this year. (It sounds like a lot, but that’s less than one month’s operating expenses.)

We will do our best to make fundraising easy for you – and there are a lot of tools to do that, through GiveMN.org’s online donation site and through tips and samples we will provide.

But if you are truly uncomfortable asking people to donate, please choose another way to perform at HUGE. Everyone is welcome to Space Jam each week, or to enter the Improv A Go Go lottery, or to take a class and perform in the showcase, or to submit a show idea, or all of the above. And those are just the opportunities at HUGE, there are many more in the Twin Cities. All to say, this is not just a performance slot, it is a chance to support a nonprofit theater with a mission to support the improv community.

Can I be in more than one group that performs?

Of course! We just ask that you consider how you are spreading yourself in terms of time and energy, but also your ability to contribute to the group’s fundraising goals. Also know that there are a lot of improvisers who want to participate, and so try to leave room for others.

How many performance slots are there, and how do I sign up?
There are approximately 42 timeslots available, about the same as last year. All performance times and now taken for Improvathon 2013.

Why does HUGE schedule this to coincide with GiveMN.org’s Give to the Max Day?

The short answer is HUGE will be eligible to win $1,000 – $10,000 extra dollars based on incentives from GiveMN.

The longer answer is that Give to the Max Day is an important arts and nonprofit awareness tool that makes a big impact statewide. By participating in GTMD, we are part of a much larger event, and are supporting fellow Minnesota nonprofits.

I can’t or don’t want to perform. Is there another way to participate?

Come watch some shows! Bonus points if you make a donation to HUGE via GiveMN.org at home and then bring a printout to HUGE.

Be an Iron Audience Member - If you are comfortable with staying up for 24-hours, this could be a great option. If not, just come out and watch some shows! A lot of us will be there, and it will be fun.

Volunteer – We’ll need 29-hours of box officers, tech booth operators, help with food, general tidying, massage therapists (?), you name it! A volunteer sign-up sheet will be posted soon.

Encourage people to contribute before they come to the theater – Our goal is to get donors to donate online and bring a printout w/ them to HUGE. It’s faster/easier for them and for box office.

Offer or find a Matching Grant – GiveMN has piles of research that says projects with Matching Grants receive more donations.

Finding matches for your group are a great strategy if you want to win the top fundraising prize, but also is a great thing for people that want to give before Give to the Max Day. It is a great way to get the word out and start fundraising right away. At present, we don’t have a matching donor set up. You could get one for your own group. Or ask your work if they donate to 501c3 nonprofits like HUGE.

Spread the word! – Word of mouth is incredibly important to HUGE, not only for the Improvathon, but for all our shows. If you haven’t reviewed HUGE on Yelp or Google, consider doing that. Great reviews are among the most valuable gifts you can give.

What was that link again?

Sign up to be an Iron Audience Member

I don’t see the answer to my question here – who can I contact?

Feel free to send questions to molly at hugetheater dot com.