Magnet Theater Blog

Monday October 16, 2017, 7:41pm - by Magnet Theater

The New York Musical Improv Festival (NYMIF), now in its ninth year is making its return to the Magnet Theater this Thursday, October 19 – 22.

Showcasing more than 230 of the biggest and brightest musical comedy performers from around the U.S, Canada and Germany, this year’s festival will feature everything from traditional musical theatre fare à la Sondheim and Andrew Lloyd Webber, to adrenaline-pumping rap battles and Hamilton-esque- style improvised historical “Hip-Hoperas!”

Festival favorites such as Baby Wants Candy (with cast members whose credits include Saturday Night Live, The Daily Show, 30 Rock, The Colbert Report and Broadway’s “Bloody, Bloody Andrew Jackson,” sensational improvisational vocalist, Mikki Hommel who toured the US and Europe with Dweezil Zappa, and Improvised Sondheim Project (comprised of performers and faculty from legendary improv training ground The Second City in Chicago) will return alongside North Coast! – fresh off their Off-Broadway run at The Connelly Theater.

New additions to this year’s festival include, LA’s award-winning team, Robot Teammate – (creators of #TURBULENCE running Off Broadway at the SoHo Playhouse, ) Your Love, Our Musical , ( who recently appeared on Bravo’s “Million Dollar Listings” ) and American Immigrants, feat. Anthony Veneziale, (known for his work in Freestyle Love Supreme with Lin Manuel Miranda and other Hamiltonians.

Ticket information, show schedules and other event details can be found at www.nymif.com.

Full list of performers…

Baby Wants Candy (NYC), The Improvised Sondheim Project (Chicago), American Immigrants (SanFrancisco), NORTH COAST Presents ANYBODY: An Improvised Historical Hip-Hopera (NYC),Your Love, Our Musical (NYC), The Armando Diaz Experience: Musical Edition (NYC), Robot Teammate and the Accidental Party (L.A.), Vox Pop (Washington, DC), Mansical (Chicago), Mikki Hommel (NYC), Murder ‘Til Death (San Diego), Olivia Benson (NYC), Wonderland (NYC), Hot Mess (Kansas City/Chicago), Good Catch (NYC), ImprovBoston (Boston), Premiere: The Improvised Musical (NYC), PYROS (NYC), IMMIGRANTS, THE MUSICAL! (PART 1) (Austin, TX), VERN (NYC), RoboPop (NYC), After Hours (Oklahoma City), Public Pool (NYC), Bookends: A Musical Journey (NYC/San Francisco), COMMITMENT PANTS (Chicago), Mr. Kitty (NYC), Hansbury and Slack Present THE MOMENT: An Improvised Musical Play (NYC), Oh My Lanta (Chicago), Girls Girls Girls (Austin, TX), Warm Blooded (NYC), James and Then Also Stoddy, Too (NYC), Pitch, Please!!! (L.A.), Grammalot (Pittsburgh), Eastwood (Chicago), SideCar (International Ensemble) and Trudy Carmichael’s Musical Mixer (Las Vegas).

The New York Musical Improv Festival will also be featuring up and coming performers in the NYMIF I.P.O. (Initial Public Offering). Performing this year are Door #3 (Washington, DC), Large Mouth Bass (Providence, RI), Noice! (NYC) and Redshirts (NYC).

SPECIAL EVENTS:

Armando Diaz Experience: Musical Edition – On Thursday, October 19 at 9:00pm, a musical edition of the classic “Armando” form which originated at the iO (formerly known as ImprovOlympic) in Chicago. Musical improvisors will work off of the words of a special guest Monologist to create a fully realized One Night Only musical!

Musical Inspirado – On Thursday, October 19 at 11:00pm, the only MUSICAL improv competition in the world! This year four musical improv teams: Warm Blooded (Magnet, NYC), Hot Mess (Kansas City/Chicago), Oh My Lanta (Chicago), Mr. Kitty (PIT, NYC) will each accept one challenge and battle it out for the audience’s approval. Once all of the votes have been tallied, one victor shall be awarded the highly coveted Dale North Memorial Trophy. Don’t miss your chance to see what will be the best competitive meeting of improvised musicals of the century!

SideCar: International Ensemble – On Saturday, October 21 at 7:00pm, a team of improvisers from all over the U.S., Canada and Germany, will come together from their corners of the earth to create an exciting, (possibly multi-lingual,) One-Night- Only, completely improvised musical performance! Directed by Nikita Burdein

Trudy Carmichael’s Musical Mixer – On Saturday, October 21, 2017 at 11:30pm, this late night festival favorite, now in its ninth year, challenges you to try your lady (and manly) luck at making up music with some of the finest Musical Improvisers in the country. Anyone can sign up to perform – even if it’s your first time! Keep your bankroll stashed because admission to the Mixer is 100% FREE! Hosted by Las Vegas Lounge Legend and lush, Miss Trudy Carmichael and her trusty sidekick, T.J. with The Magnet Musical Mixer Orchestra, a 5-piece band led by the incomparable Frankie Keys, providing improvised musical accompaniment throughout the night!

Thursday October 12, 2017, 5:22pm - by Megan Gray

The Magnet is excited to announce the first all-musical Circuit! Three teams of six performers each will be created and receive a run of five shows at the Training Center on Saturday nights, starting November 11th.

Musical Circuit teams will be created by lottery. Anyone who has completed Musical Level 3 and is not currently on a Musical Megawatt team is eligible to apply. For more details and to put your name in the hat, fill out THIS FORM!

Wednesday October 11, 2017, 3:35pm - by Magnet Theater

Magnet Theater Logo

Ever wonder how our graphics game could possibly be so on point? It’s all thanks to our amazing team of designers and illustrators. And now, you can be one of them!

We’re looking for talented folks to volunteer their time and skills as part of Magnet’s graphics team. You can earn credits toward free classes (if you’re into that sort of thing) or you can simply enjoy the internal rewards of seeing your work displayed all around the theater and website. Whatever makes you feel alive!

The graphics team helps us out with the visual needs of the theater—whether it’s branding new programs, updating our existing art, or creating show promotions and campaigns.

The time commitment is on a project basis, so take on work as your schedule allows—we’re cool with that. Plus, not gonna lie, there’s a lot of cool stuff coming up.

To apply, send a resume and a link to your portfolio to Evan Barden at evan@magnettheater.com and please provide a brief summary of your involvement at Magnet (if any). We’re excited to hear from you!

Thursday October 5, 2017, 4:04pm - by Magnet Theater

large_thecircuit

Magnet is very excited to announce that the next season of Conservatory Circuit is now open for applications! What is Conservatory Circuit, you ask? Why, it’s just like the regular Circuit, except it’s open only to students who have been accepted into Magnet’s Conservatory program (Level 5 and above). It’s an awesome way to work weekly with an ensemble and coach as well as get more reps under your belt. We highly recommend it!

KEY DATES:
Application deadline: Monday, 10/16 at noon
Team announcements: Saturday, 10/21
First team rehearsals: Weekend of 10/28
Shows: Fridays at 10pm; 11/3 – 12/15 at the Magnet Training Center Studio. No show on 11/24 due to Thanksgiving.

What are you waiting for? Check out the details and apply now!

Questions, thoughts, comments, or concerns can be directed to circuit@magnettheater.com.

Wednesday October 4, 2017, 7:00am - by Magnet Theater

Applications are now open for Ringers’ November show. Ringers is a sketch show for aspiring, eager, and ambitious writers, actors, and directors of the Magnet community – and we want you to be a part of it!

The show will be Monday, November 20th at 10:30 P.M.

Below please see the details to apply:

WRITERS:

To have your sketch considered, prior or current participation in Magnet’s Sketch Writing program, Diversity Sketch Lab, Lady Sketch Lab, or Magnet Video Lab is required. You will be required to attend the Table Read on Friday, November 3rd from 6:30 P.M. – 8:30 P.M. as well as the show. Attendance of rehearsals is encouraged but is not mandatory. We encourage directors and writers to meet up after the table read to go over notes and any revisions prior to the first rehearsal.

*Please note that rehearsals will be held before/after class hours during the week and weekend.*

To apply, please fill out the following form: https://goo.gl/forms/HifLEPANTxTociHl1 as well as email ringers@magnettheater.com a finished, polished sketch formatted correctly and no longer than 5 pages in length. This sketch should contain little to no technical needs.

ACTORS:

To be considered as an actor, you must have completed at least Level 4 of Magnet’s Improv Curriculum, Level 2 of the Musical Program, or have participated in the Magnet’s Video Lab, Lady Sketch Lab, or Diversity Sketch Lab. You will be required to attend the Table Read on Friday, November 3rd from 6:30 P.M. – 8:30 P.M., the rehearsals for the sketch(es) you are cast in, and the show.

*Please note that rehearsals will be held before/after class hours during the week and weekend.*

Actors will typically be given at least 2 roles and thus must be available for more than one rehearsal slot.

To apply to be an actor for an upcoming show, please fill out the following form: https://goo.gl/forms/vxqpNdhIR0bY6xPu2

DIRECTORS:

To be considered as a director, you must have Big Sib’ed a Sketch Level 2 class or have been on a Magnet Sketch Team. You will be required to attend the Table Read on Friday, November 3rd from 6:30 P.M. – 8:30 P.M., the rehearsals for the sketch(es) you are directing, and the show. We encourage directors and writers to meet up after the table read to go over notes and any revisions prior to the first rehearsal.

*Please note that rehearsals will be held before/after class hours during the week and weekend.*

To apply to be a director for a sketch in an upcoming show, please fill out the following form: https://goo.gl/forms/VwXR1cjh3GcwuvDl2

**The deadline to be considered for Ringers’ November show is Wednesday, October 18th. Announcements will go out around Friday, October 27th**

For all questions please e-mail Armando Diaz and Amanda Xeller at ringers@magnettheater.com. We look forward to working with you!

Monday October 2, 2017, 11:57am - by Megan Gray

Magnet Theater is pleased to announce the new teams and additions for the Fall 2017 season of Musical Megawatt, debuting this Tuesday, October 3rd, 7pm and Megawatt, debuting this Wednesday, October 4th, 7pm.  We hope to see you there.

Names with a caret^ are new to Megawatt. Names with an asterisk* are returning to Megawatt.

***MUSICAL MEGAWATT***

NEW TEAM ELVIS
Michael Bird^
Amy Charowsky*
Marie Denny^
Natasha Gleichmann*
Collin Gossel^
Veronica Lowry^
Adam Payne

 

***MEGAWATT***

NEW TEAM GOUDA
Alex Braslavsky
Jarreau Carrillo
Princess Gibbs^
Patrick Grizzard
Amanda Rothman^
Keith Rubin*
Ryan Shams^
Danielle Wessler^

NEW TEAM ASIAGO
Justin Anderson
Bianca Casusol
Chris De La Cruz^
Ali Fisher*
Ellen Matthews^
Abby Russell
Emily Shapiro
Justin Torres*

NEW TEAM CHEDDAR
Matt Abedi^
Kim Brown
Alan Fessenden*
Molly Kiernan
Michael Kroll
Devin O’Neill*
Xavier Padin^
Dede Tabak

Some of our existing teams have received new members. Names in italics are joining a preexisting team.

CLICK TO READ MORE…

Tuesday September 26, 2017, 4:42pm - by evan barden

Magnet all-star Hannah Chase co-stars in a new short romantic comedy

Our very own Hannah Chase (The Music Industry, The Cast) co-stars in “Another Girl,” a short romantic comedy from filmmaker Austin Kase and The Light LLC. Sam’s ex-lovers aren’t so “ex” to him. In fact, they always seem to re-appear at the worst possible moment, sabotaging his hopes of finding new love.

Here’s the synopsis:

Sam’s ex-lovers aren’t so “ex” to him. In fact, they always seem to re-appear at the worst possible moment, sabotaging his hopes of finding new love. Can Sam banish them from his life before they ruin his chances with the newfound girl of his dreams? Swaying delicately between dry wit and wistful vulnerability, Another Girl playfully explores the way our relationships shape who we are, and offers a fresh perspective on sex, love, and self-acceptance.

Plus, it’s already been accepted into the Lighthouse International Film Festival, the Chain NYC Film Festival,  the First Glance Film Festival Philadelphia, and most recently, the 15th Annual Tallgrass Film Festival! We’ll be keeping any eye out for when “Another Girl” made available online, but in the meantime, congrats to Hannah!

Another Girl is an Official Selection at the Tallgrass Film Festival!

 

Thursday September 14, 2017, 4:40pm - by Magnet Theater

Magnet TC Logo v3

We’re looking for eager improvisers (prerequisite: completion of Level 1) to participate in warm-ups and exercises run by the students in Armando Diaz’s coaching class. All the details are below—but keep in mind that space is limited.  Hope to see you there!

When to be available: Saturdays, Sept. 23rd through Oct. 28th from 4-6 pm (no class 9/30). Volunteers must be able to attend all sessions!

How to sign up: Simply send an email to schooldirector@magnettheater.com with the subject line: “COACHING CLASS VOLUNTEER SEPT. 2017” Please include your full name and verify that you can attend all sessions.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact us at (212) 244-2400.

Thursday September 14, 2017, 10:00am - by Promo Team

Welcome to Magnet’s “Getting To Know” series! We’re using our blog to highlight our fabulous performers and writers and we can’t wait for you to meet them. Want to see them all? Click here.

Who the heck are ya?

The Cast is a team of women at the Magnet that improvises plays, showing what is happening both onstage and also offstage during the performance. Sometimes we do special genres. Sometimes those special genres are insane.

How long have you all been performing together?

The Cast started as a Director Series in May of 2015, and was added as an official weekend show in the fall of that same year.

Who would be your ideal guest to perform with?

The list is long! To name a few: Tami Sagher, Rachel Dratch, Maya Rudolph, Lauren Lapkus, Carol Burnett, Kate Winslet, Lucille Ball’s ghost, and of course Benedict Cumberbatch.

What was your second choice for a name of the show?

I had to search my email for it, but I think the working title was “Onstage/Backstage.” I also found a brainstorming email chain with Chrissie Gruebel in which we alternatively threw out these** additional gems: Behind the Scenes, Cause a Scene, Make a Scene, Line!, On in Five, Off and On, Between Scenes, Players, The Show Must Go On, Curtain Up, Everyone’s Period Just Started, The Spotlight, 15 Minutes, The Original Queens of Drama, The Thing, and Staged. **All but one of these is real.

What’s the best part about performing at Magnet Theater?

The Magnet is home to so many incredible, creative, interesting and supportive artists. We truly feel that this is a community in which we can take risks and be supported not only for the final product but for the risk-taking itself. That’s been essential for this show to thrive.

If there was a biopic about your team, what would it be titled?

We Like Each Other…Too Much

Describe the soundtrack to said biopic!

We’re pretty into Kesha’s “Woman” these days. Also, does she not spell it K$sha anymore? Why not? Also, we know this isn’t a soundtrack, it’s just a song. But it’s our biopic so we can do what we want. Get off our back.

What makes your group laugh the most?

Scheduling.

If you could have a mascot for your shows, who or what would it be?

A girl’s aged 9-12 soccer team just after they’ve had their oranges and have all that natural sugar racing through their veins.

When can we see you perform?

Every Saturday night at 10:30pm at the Magnet! And occasionally at improv festivals around the country and in Canada! It’s not that we’re opposed to going outside of North America, we just haven’t been invited anywhere else yet, hint hint hint.

Anything else you all want to add?

We do occasional bake sales to raise money for causes we care about. We also do a [somewhat] monthly jam for any and all female-identifying improvisers; they’re super fun, and we’d love to see you there! Also, coming to The Cast isn’t just about laughing (which you’ll do! we promise!) it’s also about being part of a brand new never-to-be-seen-again full theatrical production, put on by people who like each other too much and are all on their periods at the same time. Beat that.

 

Wednesday September 13, 2017, 7:00am - by evan barden

Matt Koff is a comedian, recovering improviser, and Emmy-award winning writer for his work on The Daily Show. As one of the first Magnet students, Matt brings his comedy back to the theater for a stand-up comedy series. “Matt Koff & Friend” features a half hour of comedy from Koff himself, as well as another half hour from a comedian of his choice.

How long have you been performing stand-up comedy?

For about 7 years now. I had been doing sketch and improv for about 5 years prior to that. I’m old. Older than the Tennessee Valley herself, some might say.

How would you compare the NYC stand-up scene from when you first started to now?

When I started there seemed to be a lot of crazy people at open mics. I do fewer mics now but the ones I go to don’t seem to have people who’ve just wandered in from Times Square talking about how they’d like to rape the Statue of Liberty or whatever.
As far as I can tell it hasn’t really changed. I’ve changed a little bit. In the beginning I was one of the scared newbies at mics who just hoped my 4 minutes of jokes worked. Now I’m less scared and not a newbie. I’m old. So old. Although trying out a new joke will always make me nervous. One day I hope to stop caring, so I can finally start talking about my true passion: sexually assaulting large statues.

Can you tell us about a time that you “bombed” on stage?

Yes. I can tell you about several times. But the worst I’ve ever bombed is when I was at The Comedy Store in LA. It was my first and so far only time performing there, I went up at like 1:30am and there was just silence. I swear I could hear the ghost of David Letterman weeping.

When did you start taking classes at Magnet Theater? Did you learn anything from the classes that you still use in your work today?

I started taking classes here when it first opened. Before that I’d been studying with Armando when he taught classes independently. That’s right, PRE-Magnet. Which makes me a pretty cool guy.
One thing I learned that I still use today, mainly in writing, is to patiently explore an idea and don’t be afraid of letting it form organically. Armando also stressed the importance of being a philosopher and constantly asking why things are the way they are in every day life, which is hugely important in every form of comedy, especially stand-up.

What does stand-up comedy bring to you that improv does not?

With stand-up, you don’t have to wait for anyone. You can go and do 3 sets a night and develop as fast as you want to develop. It also gives you an opportunity to hone and workshop an act again and again which I find really fulfilling.
But every so often I will do improv with the other Daily Show writers, and I find that fun in a completely different way, because obviously there’s no real plan and you don’t know what’s going to happen next.
In hindsight, I think I have more fun doing improv. But I didn’t start doing comedy to have “fun.” I did it to suffer. And for the free drink tickets. 😉

Who would be your ideal guest to perform the 2nd half hour on Matt Koff & Friend?

Adam Wade. And I was lucky enough to get him!

How do you like performing stand-up in an improv theater setting?

I like it a lot. The audiences are really smart, and there are very few drunk bachelorette parties in the audience who interrupt my set and laugh at the wrong parts of the joke. Quiet, ladies! “So I just had arm surgery” is not a punchline!

Come see Matt Koff & Friend Monday September 18th at 9pm with special guest Adam Wade!