Shows and Classes at PHIT are canceled for March 6, 2013

Happy snow day comedy fans! Due to the inclement weather forecast to sweep through town this evening we are canceling shows and classes at the theater. If you purchased a ticket for tonight’s show you will be issued a refund. If you had class, your session will now be extended one week.

Please be safe! Get home and enjoy all the funny stuff they keep telling us is on YouTube. (You could even watch The Flat Earth’s Fringe 2012 show on PHIT’s channel).

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2013 Improv Auditions – March 9th & 10th!

EmilyDavis_color(small)It’s that time of the year: PHIT is looking for the most talented improvisers in the City of Brotherly Love to fill our stage and join a company of over 100 performers who are members of our theatre managed improv & sketch teams or show hosts and writers.

This year we are casting three new improv teams of approximately 6-9 performers each. One team will be put into PHIT’s schedule on Saturday nights as part of PHIT House Team Night starting in May and will be directed by Ralph Andracchio, the other two teams will become PHIT’s first Harold teams and will perform every Tuesday the theater has a run in The Shubin (also starting in May). The Harold team directors are Rob Gentile and Alex Newman. Complete details are below!


PHIT will be holding open-call auditions for our House Teams on Saturday, March 9th, 2013 from 10:00 a.m. until 6:00 p.m.. Auditions will be held at The Adrienne Theatre Skybox, 2030 Sansom Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103.

CALLBACKS will be held the following day, Sunday, March 10th, 2013 from 12:00 p.m. (noon) until 6:00 p.m. in the same location.

Auditioners should have previously completed PHIT’s Improv 201 course or will need to detail their previous training and receive permission from the theater to attend (in general, having taken an equivalent “201” or “intermediate” course with another established improv school will meet the requirement). Auditioners who have taken classes at PHIT will not be given special preference over those who have studied elsewhere, although we will have had more time to see you perform which may help.

You must be available for the posted audition times to be considered. No other audition times are available.


Sign-ups begin immediately. To secure an audition time please email your name, phone number, a preferred time (if any), and details of your past improv training (if you have not completed PHIT’s Improv 201 to:

You will receive a confirmation message within two (2) business days – for example, if you contact us on Monday you’ll hear from us by Wednesday, or if you contact us on Friday, you’ll hear from us by the following Tuesday). We will accept sign-ups until no audition times remain. All specific audition times are first-come-first-served.

There are no alternate times. If you are not available for these audition dates and times, please do not email or call to ask for an exception – you simply will not be able to audition. If you are interested in auditioning, you must sign-up for one of our announced timeslots.


Auditioners will be seen every 30 minutes in groups of 7-10. Auditioners do not need to prepare anything in advance as the audition will be entirely improvised. You will be asked to participate in a few short group exercises and will then perform two short scenes with a partner. The directors of the new teams, members of PHIT’s Artistic Team and PHIT Instructors will be in attendance to watch auditions. Anyone who is not a member of this groups or an auditioner will be required to wait outside The Skybox during auditions.

Auditioners should wear comfortable clothes and shoes. Resumes are not required but will gladly be accepted. Please bring a headshot with you if you have one. If you don’t have headshots, a recent snapshot will suffice.

PLEASE ARRIVE AT LEAST FIFTEEN (15) MINUTES PRIOR TO YOUR SCHEDULED AUDITION TIME. There will be a short questionnaire for you to complete prior to your scheduled audition time.


Still have questions?
Send us an email :

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PHIT Accepting Variety Show Applications for Sweeps Weeks!

Ever wanted to host your own show at PHIT? Have an original idea you’ve never seen at the theater before? Well we are looking for PHIT’s next big Variety Show and need your ideas!

May is going to host the first ever Sweeps Weeks at PHIT. If you have an original idea for a show you’d like to host on a monthly basis at the theater, let us know! What counts as a variety show? It can be anything you want: game show, talk show, something musical, something dancing, puppets, dressing up like baby penguins… anything you can think of (as long as it’s not strictly improv or sketch, cause we have a lot of that already)!

If you are interested in submitting, please send an email to with your name and email address and “Sweeps Weeks” in the subject line. You will then be sent a brief survey to answer some questions about your show idea. Make sure to be as detailed as possible in your description of the show – the more we know about your idea, the better! The deadline to submit is MARCH 10TH. All submissions will receive a reply by March 14th. We are accepting shows on a rolling basis, so the sooner you get your idea in the better!

Selected shows will perform a 30-minute “pilot” paired with another sweeps week show on one of the following dates: May 1st,8th,15th, or 22nd, 2013 at 7:00 p.m. and the audience will then rate the shows to determine which will go on to a semi-final round. The four semi-finalists will perform again on May 29th and two finalists will perform June 5th. The winning show will be decided by a panel of judges the receive a run at PHIT. Runners up may also be offered other chances to perform. If your show is not picked, you will have still have had the chance to workshop a show idea you could produce elsewhere and receive feedback to help improve it!

Need ideas to get inspired? Try checking out the great variety shows PHIT already offers: Guilty Pleasures, TV Party, Reasonable Discourse with Jerks, Fibber, and The Monthly Hour, just to name a few.

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Spring is in the Air at PHIT!

MarbachSmallSpring training is upon us. The time when the Phillies’ equipment truck is tracked as it travels down the I-95 corridor as if it’s Santa on Christmas Eve. Spring training of a different kind at PHIT is also upon us. In addition to the awesome core improv and sketch classes we have several amazing opportunities with different workshops and electives.

We can welcome back Christina Gausus! Christina will be teaching a one day workshop titled The Power of Authenticity. Reacting in the moment in an honest way. It’s talk that she walks every time that she performs. That will be March 2nd.

We can also welcome Maggy Keegan to the PHIT faculty! Maggy brings a wealth of experience and talent to the PHIT staff and will no doubt become a favorite in no time. Her first order of business will be teaching a 4-week Scene Study Elective starting April 14th.

Jason Grimley will be teaching an improv elective focused on the “The Bat” form. This is a form that takes place in complete darkness. You thought listening was important when you had all your senses. Wait till you see when it’s all you’ve got to work with!

Clowning with Kristen Schier! PHIT’s resident class clown will walk you through various exercises that help you get in touch with your inner rubber nose. And I’m pretty sure you’ll also get a real rubber nose. That will be April 14th and is always a popular workshop.

Mike Hochman will be teaching a workshop on March 16th that teaches you to screw around with your scene partner. Take care of them? Take care of yourself! Mike will show you how to play in a more “self-centered” way that will help get your out of your head and having fun again. That one is titled Screwing With Friends.

Free Improv Workshops every month! Been on the fence about taking a class? Jump in to one of the free workshops. You’ll get a taste of what to expect without committing to registering. Bring a friend!

This is just through April. There’s a lot of spring left after that and we have even more things planned. Be on the lookout for more awesome electives and workshops on movement, object and environment work and even stage combat!

As always, one of the best ways to supplement your knowledge in class is to see shows. So be sure to check out the PHIT website for all show information. You can’t spell improve, without improv. Yes, I just said that. Spring!

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PHIT Improv Conservatory Now Accepting Applications!

We at PHIT are very excited to announce the next round of the PHIT Improv Conservatory will be taking place this spring. Not only that, but the group is lucky enough to have Hot Dish Director, Steve Kleinedler as the instructor. The goal of the conservatory is simple: create an offering that furthers the commitment PHIT has always had to create amazing performers out of everyday people and grow the comedy scene in Philly. The conservatory class will take a small group chosen from among a larger pool of applicants and work with them to create an ensemble that has developed their own style of play.

After eight weeks of work with one of our top instructors they will enjoy a one month run (4 shows) at PHIT for a paying audience, during which time they will continue to work with their instructor turned director to improve their show, review tape of their performance, and grow through the experience of working in front of a crowd. The first conservatory class created a form called “Olympus” in which they portrayed gods influencing the lives of mere mortals. It was a really fun, ambitious show that went over very well. I can’t wait to see what this new group puts together.

It is our hope is that the Improv Conservatory will offer students a variety of different experiences and viewpoints each time they apply for and are accepted into a session (you can take as many conservatory classes as you can get accepted into), and that it will help bridge the gap between finishing our core curriculum and successfully auditioning for a spot in the cast of PHIT’s special projects or House Teams.

As stated above you must either have completed PHIT Improv levels 101, 201, 30 and 401, completed the core curriculum of a comparable improv theater or have special permission from the Education Director. If you feel you qualify, but do not meet the aforementioned qualifications you can email me to discuss your situation.

Applications will be accepted through end of day 2/28/13. Those chosen for this round of the conservatory will be notified by Monday, 3/4/13 with class starting Sunday 3/17 (6:30pm-9:30pm). Special payment arrangements are available to students accepted into the PHIT Improv Conservatory program. Application and full schedule details can be found in the improv classes section of the website.

With so many great performers graduating this program all the time, this will no doubt be a very tough decision. Best of luck to all!

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Philly Improv Theater Announces Artistic Team!

A full press release detailing the new Artistic Team will be available on this site tomorrow morning.

We are proud to announce appointments to the new Artistic Team for PHIT! After several years of rapid growth PHIT Executive Director Greg Maughan is handing day-to-day booking and talent management to five incredible comedians to allow increased theatrical offerings at PHIT and to develop more comedic stars for audiences in Philadelphia. The Artistic Team will be led by Ralph Andracchio as Artistic Director and will include; Emily Davis as Improv Producer, Brian Kelly as Sketch Producer, Jessica Ross as Variety Producer and Kristen Schier as Season Producer.

“I am incredibly excited by the potential of the new Artistic Team to really take our mission – giving Philly a top-notch comedy scene with quality shows to rival New York, LA and Chicago – to the next level,” says PHIT Executive Director (and founder) Greg Maughan. “The massive growth of PHIT has opened up a number of new opportunities like these to nurture the burgeoning comedy scene in Philadelphia and I think that with further guidance from all the members of team – who are a diverse and award winning bunch of performers – we can all look forward to a year of great alternative comedy shows… probably the best year this city has ever seen.”

The team has already met for the first time and their decisions on scheduling, booking and other artistic matters at the theater will begin to be reflected starting in late February!


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PHIT Announces Cast for “Codename RZA” Sketch Revue!

After a really amazing turnout for our latest auditions, PHIT is excited to announce the cast for our newest Sketch Team, who will premiere on Thursday, November 29th @ 8:30 p.m.! Please welcome the following performers to the PHIT company…

Carl Boccuti
Tonye Briggs
Joel Dickerson
Emily Hill
Michael Marbach
Luke Sand
Dennis Trafny
Corin Wells

The show will be directed by Rob Baniewicz (Camp Woods, Meg & Rob) and has been written by Head Writer Joe Moore along with writers Trevor Cunnion, Matt Lacy, Joseph Paolucci, and Nora Rizkalla.

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The second of PHIT’s two new Sketch Revue Teams is finishing up their show and are now in need to actors for performances that last week of November and first week of December. We are super excited to invite new performers in the PHIT fold and stage another great sketch show to finish the year. If you are interested in auditioning please read the complete details about the audition process and scheduling a time to be seen on our Fall Sketch Revue Actor Auditions page! This show was created by team Codename GZA (Head Writer Joe Moore) and will be directed by Rob Baniewicz (Camp Woods, Meg & Rob, TV Party!).

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Improvised B-Movie Double-Feature Starts 10/10!

PHIT House Team Asteroid! debuts B-Movie Double-Feature, an improvised show that celebrates the fun of the low-budget film genre of the 50’s, on October 10, 2012 at 7:00 p.m. and runs for three weeks.The term “B-movie” describes a low-budget commercial motion picture from the Golden Age of Hollywood, usually intended as second feature. The term B movie continues to be used in the broader sense today to represent a low-budget horror, thriller or sci-fi films. Asteroid! promise a double-feature with two improvised B-movies based on a single suggestion with low budget staples like aliens, monsters, Soviets, and mad scientists. Audiences should probably expect a Vincent Price and Peter Lorre impersonation as well. Get your tickets now!

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We’ve had our groups of writers for the new Sketch Revue teams hard at work for a while and they finally have shows coming together. So naturally we are in need of actors and actresses. Please come out and audition for PHIT’s first-ever Sketch Revue, next Thursday evening, August 9th. Full details, including instructions for requesting an audition time, are right here.

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We had a really incredible number of submissions (350+ pages) and a very deep talent pool for our first-ever sketch show writers submission process last weekend, and it forced us to make some very tough decisions. It also led us to make one decision that was very easy but also surprising… instead of casting just one team to premiere a show at the Philly Fringe in September 2012 we ended up casting two sets of writers (the second team will mount a premiere show in late-October). Also, don’t forget that it is not too late to still be a part of these shows – we will be casting actors for each Sketch Revue a little later this summer! Here are the writing teams, their Head Writers*, and their codenames:

CODENAME GZA (premieres Sept. 2012)
Steve Swan – Head Writer*
Vincent DiCostanzo
Luke Field
Sean Landis
Jess Ross
Matthew Schmid
Adam Siry

CODENAME RZA (premieres Oct. 2012)
Rob Baniewicz – Head Writer*
Trevor Cunnion
Matthew Jay
Matt Lacy
Joe Moore
Joseph Paolucci
Nora Rizkalla

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If you’ve been eager to get involved with PHIT here is your next chance! During this year’s Fringe Festival PHIT will be producing many shows, and we have opportunities to get involved in a few of them that are open to anyone! The first is with the first-ever PHIT Sketch Revue – a fully scripted sketch show that is laying the groundwork for more opportunities for students in our sketch writing program in the future. We’re acceptingsubmissions from potential writers until Friday, June 15th at 5:00 p.m. EST.

The other opportunity that is open to improvisers and comedians at the moment is an audition to be involved with PRO-MANIA 2K12 – our big hit comedy wrestling show from last year’s Fringe which is getting a reprise. PRO-MANIA celebrates the bombast and general ridiculousness that is professional wrestling, with lots of jokes and very little actual physical exertion. If you are interested in auditioning we have all the information on a separate page as well, but he deadline to put yourself in the ring is this Friday, June 15th at noon EST.

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It’s here! It’s here! We’re writing things twice as a joke! We’re writing things twice as a joke! Duofest has started and we hope you’ll come out for the fun this weekend. Full details on PHIT’s very own special festival are available online at!

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In just two weeks Philly will play host to the only comedy festival dedicated to two-person acts in the entire world. 38 great pairs from across the United States and Canada will be in town June 7th-10th, 2012 for fantastic shows, great parties, and amazing workshops. All the info is on the special Duofest website at and workshops are also listed on our website (look at the right-hand side of this page for links)!

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In the past we’ve had a meeting each year called “The State of PHIT” to talk about the current status of the theater and our plans for the future, but we decided that sounded way to self-important and/or political. Come on out for one of the dates we’ll be doing this presentation and hear what the theater has planned for 2012, where we need help, and how you can get involved:

  • Monday, February 27, 2012 @ 7:00 p.m.
  • Saturday, March 3, 2012 @ noon

You’ll be hearing from a variety of people running various aspects of the theater and important projects as well as PHIT Executive Director Greg Maughan. We think it’ll be information (if not totally exciting) and if it’s any extra incentive: there will be snacks. Complete details are available at the special event page for PHIT’s Year Ahead 2012.

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After five years of training the best comedians in Philly with improv, sketch and storytelling classes PHIT has filled not only our stage, but the stages of countless other theatres, comedy clubs, and bar shows will fantastic performers. This is a great thing, but it’s also a challenge for people new to the comedy community: what happens when they have completed PHIT’s curriculum, want to continue studying and are not sure where they should go? Today we’re offering the answer to that question:

We are very excited to announce the creation of the PHIT Improv Conservatory. The goal of the conservatory is simple: create an offering that furthers the commitment PHIT has always had to create amazing performers out of everyday people and grow the comedy scene in Philly. Each conservatory class will take a small group from among a much larger pool of applicants (from graduates of PHIT’s Training Center to students who come to us with an extensive background at a comparable theater) and work with them to create an ensemble that has developed their own style of play. After eight weeks of work with one of our top instructors they will enjoy a one month run at PHIT for a paying audience, during which time they will continue to work with their instructor turned director to improve their show, review tape of their performance, and grow through the experience of working front of a crowd.

Our hope is that the Improv Conservatory will offer students a variety of different experiences and viewpoints each time they apply for and are accepted into a session, and that it will help bridge the gap between finishing our core curriculum and successfully auditioning for a highly-coveted spot in the cast of PHIT’s special projects or House Teams.

Our first conservatory class is open for applications beginning today.

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It’s a new year and we’re once again looking to cast two new improv House Teams for 2012. Previously we let potential auditioners know to save the dates 2/4, 2/7 & 2/8 so they wouldn’t miss out on the fun, and now we’re accepting requests for audition times. To make sure you have a spot and get your chance to be one of Philly newest improv stars, check out the full details on auditions right here.

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For the first time, PHIT is offering college and university credit internships in our office starting in 2012. We are very excited to make a variey of opportunities available to anyone interested in learning more about how PHIT runs, working to build the comedy community, and having a great time for a few hours each week at our office. All are welcome to apply, but students in a degree granting program (undergrad or graduate) will be given preference for this opportunity. Complete details are available here.

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PHIT will once again be looking for Philly’s best and brighest improvisers in the new year, as we expand our performance opportunities in the PHIT House Team program by adding two new ensembles of 8-10 players each. Further details on auditions will be available in January, but our dates are set. First round auditions will take place during the morning and afternoon of Saturday, February 4, 2012. Callbacks will be held on Tuesday, February 7 and Wednesday, February 8, 2012 in the evenings. Please hold all of these dates if you are interested in being cast!

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PHIT’s tribute to trashy daytime talk TV, hosted by Alex Gross, is returning in January 2012 for a second year and plans to tweak the show’s format slightly for Season Two by taking on a staff of writer/performers to generate themes for each month and create the segments in the same style as those that entertained (and sometimes shocked) audiences in it’s first year. Full details on applying for a position with the show are available on the The Gross Show Writer Submission Info page.

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