Brilliant Absurdist Sketch Comedy Duo the tim&micah project Presents COLLECTION at Stage 773

September 29, 2011 § Leave a comment

Brilliant
– Flavorpill

Genius
– Centerstage Chicago

Fascinating
– NYTheater.com

Exhilarating
– Time Out Chicago    

It’s a nice change of pace when sketch comedians actually treat their audience members like smart human beings.”
Chicago Tribune

 

Think you know sketch comedy?  You haven’t seen anything until you’ve experienced the convention-defying, silly and cerebral scenes of the tim&micah project.  The titular writer/performer duo of Tim Soszko and Micah Philbrook have now assembled the best of their critically-acclaimed work in the tim&micah project: COLLECTION, appearing at the newly-renovated Stage 773 every Saturday in October.

Like previous revues, COLLECTION is painstakingly constructed to immerse the audience in a mind-bending, non-stop theatrical experience that Flavorpill calls “a roller-coaster combination of physical, intellectual, and just plain absurd comedy.”  Doing away with the structural conventions of sketch comedy, their scenes morph into each other through dance and performance art transitions, weaving what Time Out Chicago calls “a web of scenes straight out of a David Lynch fantasy.”

You never know what to expect, except the highest caliber of thought-provoking comedic enjoyment, as the tim&micah project continues push the boundaries of sketch comedy.

Need more than that?  Watch this video.

Yeah, that’s right. Go see these guys.

the tim&micah project: COLLECTION
Saturdays @ 10:30pm, October 1-29, 2011.
Stage 773, 1225 W Belmont Ave (Belmont & Racine), Chicago, IL 60657.
$15 tickets are available at Stage773.com or 773.327.5252.

Learn more about tim&micah at timandmicahproject.com.

View more excellent tim&micah videos at http://bit.ly/9AcRoB

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the tim&micah project: VERSUS opens Feb 12 at Donny's Skybox

February 9, 2011 § Leave a comment

“Fantastic…strange…a duo I love time and time again.” – Time Out Chicago

“Really funny stuff. Definitely see this inventive, playful, and very well put together show.”  – NYTheater.com

“Doesn’t just meet your expectations — it leaves them in the dust of new and better comedic ideas.” – Downtown Express

My friends at the tim&micah project are back, and truly, it doesn’t get much better than this.  Unique, hilarious and worthy of your attention.  Go see this show.

the tim&micah project: VERSUS is purposefully pretentious sketch comedy, painstakingly constructed to provide the audience with the highest caliber of thought-provoking comedic enjoyment. Recently featured in the New York International Fringe Festival, the tim&micah project is presenting its fourth all-original production in an effort to expand minds and broaden entertainment horizons. Time Out Chicago and Centerstage Chicago have both called the tim&micah project “comedic geniuses” and the Chicago Tribune declares them “worth seeking out.”

Saturdays @ 7:30pmFebruary 12 – March 12.
Donny’s Skybox Theatre, 1608 N Wells St, Chicago.  (4th floor of Piper’s Alley.)
$13/$10 for students.
Tickets are available at SecondCity.com or 312.337.3992.

the tim&micah project: VERSUS is written & performed by Tim Soszko and Micah Philbrook, who have worked side by side improvising, writing, and teaching for many years and at many different places, including 7 years working as co-producers of the Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival.  Out of their desire to bring inventive and distinct work to the sketch comedy scene, they created the tim&micah project.  Their work has repeatedly won them critical acclaim.  Past revues include the tim&micah project: SHOW, the tim&micah project: SEQUEL, and the tim&micah project: CONTINUE.
For more information, visit timandmicahproject.com.

WICKEPEDIA LIVES!!

March 30, 2010 § Leave a comment

Arise, my creation! Arise!

Unfortunately, I’ve badly neglected my Wickepedia over the last several months. (Can someone, anyone tell me how people have the TIME to blog?)

Much has happened, but a few highlights are…

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GayCo’s Audacity of Nope

I had the honor of working with GayCo Productions to promote the premiere of their latest revue, The Audacity of Nope or How I Fell for a Pansy Scheme at the Strawdog Theatre.  I succeeded in wrangling 8 reviewers to attend this hilarious and subversive show, resulting in descriptions such as “extremely entertainingbrilliantly subversiveimpressive wit, contagious camp and explosive humor,” (Chicago Stage Review) “surprisingly fresh and funny…an endearing evening of comedy,” (Centerstage Chicago) and “the music is fun, the comedy is fresh and the writing doesn’t pander…it’s like a gay SNL. Except that it’s actually funny, really funny. (Chicagoist). It was a pleasure to work with this talented group and help their 15th original revue make an impact.

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Instant Musical @ LOL

Back in October, I announced Laugh Out Loud Theater‘s debut of Instant Musical, the latest addition to their popular new Thursday night lineup.  The cast of some of the top improvisers in Chicago, with live piano accompaniment, creates songs on the spot based on audience suggestions, ranging from love ballads to blues numbers and rap. Then, they unite in the second half of the show to create a completely improvised Broadway-style musical.  This show has done so well that it’s still running every Thursday!  LOL is blowing suburbanites’ minds with fully-improvised musical hilarity!

This terrific production has earned some great reviews on Goldstar Events, where members can snag some discount tickets.  Here’s one I thought was notable:

A hilarious retreat into absurdity, talent, and audience fun. We had a blast.

If you [don’t live] very close to Chicago’s Second City, this is your next best bet, and in many regards this comedy troupe is superior.” – Jake Lawrence, Goldstar Member

There you have it.  Laugh Out Loud is superior to Second City, or in some ways a very close runner-up.  Not too shabby.

Experience this night of improv set to music for yourself!

Every Thursday @ 8:00pm
Laugh Out Loud Theater, The Streets of Woodfield, 601 N. Martingale Road, Schaumburg
$15 tickets can be purchased by calling 847.240.0386
Directions and more information can be found at LOLtheater.com

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Chicago SketchFest 2010

Then of course, the Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival completely took over my life.  This January’s 9th annual SketchFest was a huge success and brought some incredible talent in massive quantities to Theatre Building Chicago for 2 whirlwind weekends of performances and fun.

Now and then I was able to sneak away from my media check-in table to see some absolutely amazing shows:
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FUCT from NYC had to be seen to be believed, offering the most violence, nudity and curtain dancing (is that what it’s called?) of any show in the Festival. Absolutely outrageous, absolutely fearless, and possibly deranged, these guys know how to put on a hell of a show.
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NYC’s New Exc!tement blew everyone’s minds with their insanely physical and wonderfully messy explosion of a performance.  Their lone female cast member, former-Chicagoan Mary Grill, was bold and hilarious in the midst of their no-holds-barred approach to slapstick.
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I loved Chicago’s own Aemilia & Ed in their latest revue, Common Problems and Recurrent Foibles, a comedy time machine to 1961. My kind of stuff. Damn smart and damn funny.
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The videos made by NYC’s BriTANick are exemplary and their live performance was no disappointment. A terrific show was topped off with a sneak preview of their new short film, “Eagles are Turning People into Horses,” which was an absurd masterstroke.
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I only caught the end of their show, but Last Call Cleveland killed me with their Cleveland tourism videos.  The 2nd of which has a line about their fair city looking “like a Scooby Doo ghost town” that had me in tears.
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Chicago’s The Cool Table was one of my favorites.  Dark, dark sketch comedy with live blues guitar covering the transitions.  Kyle More’s solo sketch “A Man Deciding Whether to Eat a Bowl of Cereal or Blow His Goddamn Brains Out” was one of the best things I have ever seen.

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On the media front, my second year as SketchFest PR Czar was definitely an exciting improvement and we achieved a ton of coverage.  Many press passes were given.  Much was written and recorded for posterity.  More on that later if/when I have time.

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the tim&micah project: CONTINUE

Following SketchFest, I took a nap for 3 weeks.  Afterward, I was thrilled to once again work with my friends the tim&micah project as they returned to Donny’s Skybox for their third revue (which had just debuted at SketchFest).  Far beyond a typical sketch comedy show, the tim&micah project: CONTINUE took you on a roller coaster of emotions and immersed you in a mind-bending non-stop theatrical experience.  Writer/performer duo Tim Soszko and Micah Philbrook once again demonstrated their “unbridled comic genius” (Centerstage Chicago) with an intelligent, original and meticulously-planned revue full of silliness, physical feats of wonder, and surprisingly real moments.  Doing away with the structural conventions of sketch comedy, their scenes morph into each other through dance and performance art transitions, weaving “a web of scenes straight out of a David Lynch fantasy” (Time Out Chicago). You never quite know what’s real, or what to expect as the tim&micah project continues to defy convention and push the boundaries of sketch comedy.

Or as Nina Metz of the Chicago Tribune put it in her 3 Star review…

It’s a nice change of pace when sketch comedians actually treat their audience members like smart human beings.”

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Or as Jason Heidemann of Time Out Chicago put it in his Critic’s Pick review…
Exciting and strange in all the right places, it’s a joy to both watch and take part in.”
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Or as Flavorpill put it…
Brilliant…a roller-coaster combination of physical, intellectual, and just plain absurd comedy.”
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the project never ceases to amaze and I already can’t wait for their next show. “FURTHERMORE?”  “NEXT?” We shall see…

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Hey You Millionaires in Hollywood

Most recently, I had the pleasure of working with critcially-acclaimed sketch trio Hey You Millionaires as they gathered in LA for a couple shows. Comprised of a nationally-produced playwright (James Asmus), a published humor author (Jim Fath), and a high school English teacher (John Bohan), HYM has been voted “Best Sketch Group in Chicago” in the Chicago Reader for two consecutive years and have taken their cerebral black humor all over the country.  This time they were in Hollywood to compete in the 2010 International Sketch Comedy Championship (hosted by Carlos Alazraqui!), and do a rare performance at iO West.  And HYM won the Championship!  Then didn’t!  After being crowned the winner, and as the host was saying goodnight, the producer jumped on stage to admit he had added wrong and then awkwardly announced a different winner!   I still think they were robbed and I have my lawyers looking into it.
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Comedy trivia:  The name Hey You Millionaires was taken from the first sketch of the first episode of the HBO show “Kids in the Hall.”  A couple of years ago, HYM actually got to meet and hang out with the cast of Kids in the Hall, thanks to the brilliance of journalist Steve Heisler.  They played Whirlyball.  Steve’s Time Out Chicago article about the encounter can be read here.  One of my favorite Chicago comedy stories.

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More writing in my web log to come soon…

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