SF Sketchfest

One of my favorite things Sketchfest does is that they book many of their shows using the old music format: take a lesser known act and have them do a short set ahead of the headlining set. It’s a great way to learn about some lesser known sketch troops, and often times, it’s very rewarding. Tonight we got to enjoy a set by Dopetown 3000! (Spoiler: They were exceptional) [read the whole post]

{ 0 comments }

Jane Kaczmarek reads a story by Katherine Heiny at Selected Shorts: Too Hot For Radio at the Marines’ Memorial Theatre on January 26, 2018. (Photo courtesy of Tommy Lau

As a longtime listener of Symphony Space’s Selected Shorts, a short story reading radio program broadcast locally on KQED-88.5 on Saturday nights, I was thrilled to see that Sketchfest was bringing the show to the Festival for the first time ever this year. What made the live performance even more special and fun was that it promised to offer stories “too hot for radio” – ones that, for various content reasons couldn’t be read over the air during the regular program, but could be read to a non-broadcast, live theater audience. As an added bonus on top of that, as is typical with Selected Shorts, the stories would be read by famous, well-regarded actors. For “Too Hot for Radio” we were graced with Arrested Development regular and comedian David Cross, actors Lance Reddick (The Wire) and Academy Award nominee David Strathairn (an alumni of Larkspur’s Redwood High School), and actress and Symphony Space regular reader Jane Kaczmarek (Malcolm in the Middle). The live show, held on Friday, January 26th at the Marines’ Memorial Theatre, didn’t disappoint, and more than lived up to my expectations.

[read the whole post]

{ 0 comments }

Annie Ellicott sings with Jeff Goldblum (on piano) and the Mildred Snitzer Orchestra at the Marines’ Memorial Theatre on Jan. 28th. (Photo courtesy of: https://www.facebook.com/pg/goldblumofficial/photos)

For the third year in a row, SF Sketchfest fans were treated to the affable charm of actor and musician Jeff Goldblum, who brought his Mildred Snitzer Orchestra jazz band to the Marines’ Memorial Theatre last Sunday for a cabaret-style evening of jazz, movie clips, and a whole lot more. Goldblum’s laid-back and amiable presence is always enjoyable, and he seems to take just as much pleasure in his show and his audience interaction as his fans do. [read the whole post]

{ 0 comments }

Photo by Julie Schuchard

There are many unique things about SF Sketchfest, but one of the most interesting thing they do is book monthly and weekly shows that happen in other metropolises, and bring them to the Bay Area. Tonight we got to enjoy a special delivery from New York City: Sasheer Zamata Party Time!. This is a variety show hosted by SNL’s Sasheer Zamata. We got to enjoy comedians, musicians, and even “party games” played with the audience. I guess this is what you do at parties in New York? As somebody that loves taking in new cultures, I’m up to experience what they do in New York for fun.    [read the whole post]

{ 0 comments }

From Left: Paget Brewster, Eugene Mirman, Paula Pell, Thomas Lennon. Photos by Dan Dion

When I plotted out my Sketchfest schedule this year, I based my show decisions on a number of factors:

  1. Scarcity: How often does this person actually come to town?
  2. Age: How likely is it that I won’t be seeing this performer ever again?
  3. Fandom: The old “does this performer make my heart feel warm” when I think of them?
  4. Past experiences: Have I gone to this show or seen this performer before and enjoyed them?
  5. Podcast I’ve never heard before: Can I experience a live recording of a podcast before ever listening to it or really even understanding the format?

[read the whole post]

{ 0 comments }

The Deltas in front of their frat house.

The cast and crew from the classic movie Animal House assembled at the Castro Theatre for a panel discussion of the comedy classic in honor of its 40th anniversary. It is, as you may remember, vibrant with jokes that stand the test of time. The movie was groundbreakingly raunchy for its time, with sexual humor that seems tame now, but in 1978 challenged the ratings board, and caused the studio to resist its production until Donald Sutherland joined the cast. It was risque to show dildos on screen, and the gross out humor and blatant sexuality was new for the day. There were several scenes in which women, on a date, in a car, overlooking the city, were giving hand jobs in convertibles, expressing irritation and boredom at the laborious process of pleasuring their date, a scenario familiar to many adults. This was also one of the few jokes that seems to have been specifically penned for audience members who aren’t white men. “Is it supposed to be so soft?” asks the woman on their second encounter in the car. [read the whole post]

{ 0 comments }

SF Sketchfest Review: Sara Schaefer: Little White Box, Krista Fatka at Punchline, 1/16/18

January 22, 2018

As we all know, things are kind of nutty right now. There are some terrible people in power, those people are inspiring other terrible people to act and speak out in terrible ways, and it seems that the entire country has been either drowning, burning, or freezing most of this year. The best thing for […]

Read the full article →

Spinning Platters Interview: Rick Springfield

January 20, 2018

  Although it’s widely touted as a comedy festival, SF Sketchfest has a wide ranging program that meanders into film, television, literature and music as well. How fitting it is, then, that Rock Solid With Pat Francis is welcoming a guest with a long career doing all three. From his beginnings with mega-hit “Jesse’s Girl” […]

Read the full article →

SF Sketchfest Review: A Tribute to Dick Cavett: 50th Anniversary of the Dick Cavett Show, 1/12/18

January 14, 2018

I’m going to make a very bold statement: If Dick Cavett never existed, late night television would be unrecognizable. As a writer and a talent coordinator of the original Tonight Show with Jack Paar, he helped shape the structure of the show, and stayed on for a bit as Johnny Carson took over. He continued […]

Read the full article →

Spinning Platters Interview: Rhea Butcher

January 12, 2018

Rhea Butler is an amazing, outspoken comic. She released not one, but TWO records last year on Kill Rock Stars: Butcher and her collaborative record with her wife, Cameron Esposito, called Back To Back. Butler has three shows this weekend at SF Sketchfest presented by Audible, and we had the chance to talk to her […]

Read the full article →