What is this?
The Thumbs UPstate Improv Festival is an annual comedy improvisation festival with the mission of fostering a greater sense of community between improv teams in Upstate New York. We missed a year. Sue us.
Because there's a need. We have this great art, lots of talent, and an incredibly willing audience. But for the most part we're islands in the sea. Better collaboration and community will lead to better exchange of ideas and creativity, better visibility and a lot more fun.
How are you doing so far?
Pretty good, if we say so ourselves. The inaugural festival was held April 8-9, 2011 at the St. Clare Theater in Syracuse. Over 200 people watched, performed, workshoppped and partied with us over two days. Groups and people came from Albany, Binghamton, Buffalo, Geneseo, Ithaca, Rochester, and Syracuse.
2012 was a weird year as the Festival coordinators were occupied starting the Syracuse Improv Collective. But the Festival is back on in 2013, April 4-6.
What groups performed?
In no particular order: Satan's Closet (Syracuse), Vibrant but Deadly (Geneseo), Village Idiots Improv Comedy (Rochester), Pappy Parker Players (Binghamton), RIT Improv (Rochester), Wit & Will (Albany), Phil in the Blank (Buffalo), Orgeon Fail (Syracuse), Search Engine Improv (Rochester), Dinosaur Society (Syracuse), Outside the Realm of Destiny (Syracuse-L.A.), and Don't Feed the Actors. Geva Comedy Improv helped out with workshops.
So what's next?
Wherever improv groups come together to perform or workshop or experiment, ThumbsUP is there. If you have an improv project you'd like us to help promote, just let us know and we'll do what we can.
But will there be another festival?
Of course! Eventually.