Let’s Put on a Show!

sketch show poster UPDATE: We’ve switched to the show dates from Fri & Sat, June 28 & 29 to Thur & Fri, June 27 & 28.

Big Blue Door is excited to announce a fantastic new project called, The Sketch Show!

6-12 creative people (hopefully including you!) will meet on Monday nights each week for May and most of June to create brand-new comedy sketches using improv scenes. I’ll act as director and showrunner. Then we’ll pull it all together over five rehearsals during last week of June, and put up an entirely original show of funny, smart comedy on Thursday, June 27 and Friday, June 28.

This is a free prototype for a class we’ll run next year, and we’re very excited to offer it through The Bridge PAI!

Wait, what is The Sketch Show?


A 70-90 minute show of short, funny, new comedy sketches, plus maybe songs or videos–whatever we come up with–based on our experiences of life here in Charlottesville and beyond. Everything is fair game: local institutions, attitudes, and habits: breaking bottles at the recycling center, looking at expensive jewelry at the Farmer’s Market, weepy Dove commercials, Trader Joe’s vs Whole Foods, the facebook postings of your friends, hipsters, gentrification, UVA, dating, jobs… The Sketch Show is a comedy exploration of anything and everything. It’s going to be hilarious, it’s going to be amazing, it’s going to be like nothing this town has seen for many years. Best of all, it’s going to be created by people like you!

Who, ME?


Yes you. Well, hopefully you. We’ll be creating an entire show in a lot less time than most community theaters produce pre-scripted plays, so we need people with training. To write or perform as part of the The Sketch Show you must have completed either Improv Character & Scene (sponsored by Live Arts) or the Sketch Comedy Workshop (Big Blue Door has run one of these workshops and I taught a similar workshop through Writer House last summer.)

This will be a show, but it will also be a prototype for a class. You’ll learn how to take your experiences, opinions, and observations and turn them into hilarious skits. You can be a writer or a performer or both. Or if you want to help us out but haven’t had a chance to take improv or sketch classes, we can use a few people behind the scenes.

What sort of time-commitment are we talking?


To be a performer we need you once a week on Monday evenings for May and most of June. Mondays May 6 through June 17, but skipping May 27 which is Memorial Day weekend. Rehearsals will usually be 7 pm to 9:30 pm at The Bridge. These session will generate the material for the show, so it’s essential that performers be at 5 of the 6 development rehearsals. Towards the end you’ll have line memorization to do, but we won’t overburden you. If you don’t have a lot of experience performing we won’t give you more than you can chew; if you have a lot of experience we’ll give you plenty to do. Finally, we have five more nightly rehearsals of the complete show starting June 23rd and leading up to the two performances on June 27 & 28.

To be a writer we need you for about 4 out of 6 of the Monday rehearsals plus you’ll need to write material during the week on your own. We may also need you during the final rehearsal week. For this first show all the live show material will be created from the improvisations using notes and recordings. Also instead of the workshop process common in live theater we’ll follow a process closer to that of television with me acting as ‘showrunner’ but unlike television all material will revert to the writers after the show; you can use it for future sketches, scripts or plays.

If you want to do video shorts, music or other stuff, that will also be additional time commitment since the Monday rehearsals will be dedicated to creating material.

How do I sign up or ask questions?

sign up2

Email classes@bigbluedoor.org

What’s the show really going to be like?


Vaudeville, Carol Burnett, Smothers Brothers, SNL, Monty Python, Chappelle Show, Portlandia, Mitchell and Webb, the Muppet Show, or the old Live Arts Coffeehouses… whatever we make it!

3 thoughts on “Let’s Put on a Show!

  1. I ve been wanting to do (acting and creating) a Nelsoncentric type of sketch that is similar to PORTLANDIA. Thanks this looks awesome. I guess I would be considered a performer, but I would like to sit in on some of the writing process. Ooooo, fun, fun fun! Rose

  2. Also my partner in crime from improv is interested, Charlie Wineberg. He and I have been tossing this Nelsoncentric idea about. Can he come too? Can’t you tell how excited I am. Rose Marie On Apr 23, 2013 10:41 AM, “Rosemarie Harper” wrote:

    > I ve been wanting to do (acting and creating) a Nelsoncentric type of > sketch that is similar to PORTLANDIA. Thanks this looks awesome. I guess I > would be considered a performer, but I would like to sit in on some of the > writing process. Ooooo, fun, fun fun! > Rose

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