Improvathon 2020 Registration and FAQs!
Yes, Improvathon is back! Improvisers for HUGE Improv Theater are taking the (virtual) stage — and not giving it back for 28 hours — to raise money for the the non-profit artist-led improvisational theater. It’s a one-of-a-kind fundraising barnstorm that coincides with Give to the Max Day, November 19, an annual event when Minnesotans display their generosity by celebrating and donating to local nonprofits through GiveMN.org.
Naturally, we’ll be doing things a little differently this year, because we’re moving the whole thing online for safety. Details on the changes in the Performer FAQ below.
Improv Performance Request:
There is an Improvathon kick-off meeting – Wednesday, October 21 at 6pm on Zoom!
Come ask questions, get more info and meet your fellow contenders as we gear up for GTMD2020!
The Improvathon gets underway on Wednesday night, November 18, starting at 8PM, leading up to the official Give to the Max Day start at midnight on Thursday, November 19.
A succession of many local improvisers will lead our online audience through 28 hours of spontaneous, unrehearsed, improvised theater. The program will end at midnight Nov. 19.
The goal of HUGE’s 28-hour Improvathon is to raise funds for the LynLake-area theater and support improvisational theater in the Twin Cities. In addition to producing 500+ shows a year, HUGE teaches 600+ students annually, and supports the education and career development of performing artists.
Admission is pay-what-you-can, with a suggested minimum donation of $10. All performances will be broadcast at HUGE’s Youtube page.
What is Improvathon?
Improvathon 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 19, 2019.
What is the schedule?
Starts: Wednesday, November 18 at 8:00PM
Ends: Thursday, November 19 at 11:59PM
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 connect with each other. 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 show their friends and family – inside and outside the Twin Cities — why improv and HUGE are important to them.
Why does HUGE schedule this to coincide with GiveMN.org’s Give to the Max Day?
Give to the Max Day (GTMD) 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.
In addition, HUGE will be eligible to win $1,000 – $10,000 extra dollars based on incentives from GiveMN.
2020 Prizes include
– $500 Golden Tickets every 15 minutes
– two “Power Hour” challenges – each worth $6,000
– hourly $1000 Golden Tickets
– $500 Early Giving Tickets daily, starting Nov 1
– the final $10,000 Golden Ticket!
Every donation through GiveMN on GTMD is an entry to win those prizes.
What are some easy ways I can participate?
Buy a “ticket” and watch some shows – We’ll be broadcasting for 28 straight hours, and it makes a big difference to know people out there are watching.
Host a watch party – Facebook has the capability to start a watch party, so you can invite your friends to watch WITH you! …and maybe donate.
Offer or find a Matching Grant – GiveMN has piles of research that says projects with Matching Grants receive more donations. A Matching Grant can be as small as $100 to be effective. Contact butch at hugetheater dot com if you’re interested.
Donate! – Back one or more teams of your choosing, don’t be shy.
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 Google, consider doing that. Sincere, great reviews are among the most valuable gifts you can give.
FAQ FOR IMPROV PERFORMERS
What’s new and different in 2020?
Well, the whole thing will be online, so that’s different. All performances will take place in Zoom rooms, and be broadcast via HUGE’s Youtube channel and maybe also Twitch. This has several big impacts:
- There won’t be an Iron Audience, per se. We don’t expect anyone to watch a screen for 28 straight hours; that would be terrible for your eyes. However, if you want to help us fundraise but do not want to perform, you are still welcome to create a fundraising page (see directions above) to pitch in. And of course you are welcome to tune in for as many performances as you’d like.
- We won’t need anywhere near as many volunteers, since there won’t be a front desk, a tech booth, or anything to photograph. However we are still looking for volunteers to help run the Zoom rooms in 2-4 hour blocks. If you would like to assist in this way, please contact sean at hugetheater dot com.
- We’ll have a Discord text chatroom operating for the duration of the event, where our audience and performers can hang out, connect, enjoy the performances together, and even give requested suggestions for shows.
- We won’t be supplying t-shirts for performers this year. Which makes us very sad. Since the event isn’t happening at the theater, the logistics and cost of safely distributing the shirts would just be prohibitive. However, if you’re the kind of person who HAS TO HAVE THE SHIRT, we will be creating a design, and shirts will be available for individual purchase at redbubble.com. A percentage of each purchase goes to HUGE, so you’d also be supporting the cause!
- To break things up a little, we’ll be interspersing standard sets with some special projects and staff check-ins. More details to come!
How do I sign up?
The link to the form to request a performance time is: https://hugetheater.formstack.com/forms/iat2020
**registration does not guarantee a spot in the schedule as a Performer – though we will do our best to accommodate requests**
Can I be in more than one group that performs?
Of course! We just ask that you consider how thin you are spreading yourself in terms of time and energy, but also your ability to contribute to each groups’ fundraising goals. Also know that there are a lot of improvisers who want to participate, and so try to leave room for others.
Is there a prize?
Yes! The performer/group that raises the most funds will receive a custom coaching session from a special guest, either in March or during Twin Cities Improv Festival in June. In addition, the group will receive their name on the wall, bragging rights, and a piece of HUGE swag or clothing (TBD).
Pro Tip: Finding matching grants 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 501(c)(3) nonprofits like HUGE.
I’m uncomfortable with fundraising, but I want to perform. Can I just sign up for a performance time?
Not really. Improvathon is HUGE’s biggest annual fundraiser. We are asking each performance time to try to raise at least $500. Our collective goal is $50,000 for the event, so we need all hands on deck. If you are truly uncomfortable asking friends and family to donate, this particular event isn’t the right fit.
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. Keep in mind, this isn’t about cold calling strangers. You’ll be asking family and friends who know you, and are asking them to support a nonprofit cause that’s personally important to you.
Cool, I will renew my Membership that day for part of my fundraising goal!
Memberships and supporterships — while enormously appreciated — are not handled through GiveMN, and will not count toward Improvathon team goals nor will it count toward the final tally of what is raised during Improvathon.
I don’t see the answer to my question here – who can I contact?
Feel free to send questions to Sean at hugetheater dot com.
What were those registration links again?
Improv Performance Request: