A word from Kyle Romero on Sex a.k.a. Wieners and Boobs

by Kyle Romero, Director of Sex a.k.a. Wieners and Boobs at ColdTowne Theater

Directing this play (Sex a.k.a. Wieners and Boobs by Joe Lo Truglio, Michael Showalter, and David Wain) is literally a dream come true. 

I came up in the academic world of [extremely Homer Simpson voice] legitimate theatre. I’ve done Shakespeare. I’ve done Greek tragedy. I wrote papers on commedia dell’arte and Edward Albee’s The Zoo Story. But every season at my small town university, I would walk into my professor’s office and I would pitch this play, and she would always say no. Why? Sure, it’s not really a “good” play with any “academic value.” I get that. BUT! It is so goddamn funny.

When I was a growing virgin just starting to explore the world of comedy, one of the first things I was introduced

Kyle Romero, Director of SEXAKAWB

to was Wet Hot American Summer. I could not believe the stupid shit that was in this movie. It was sold like it was a parody of 80s sex comedies like Porky’s or Meatballs, and okay, sure, kind of. But it’s not really interested in taking the piss out of a genre of movie that is already fairly piss-free, so to speak. Like, nobody watches Hot Dog: The Movie and thinks “these people are so full of themselves, they need to be taken down a peg”. Wet Hot (that’s what we call it, it’s cool to shorten stuff) is just pure silliness, and for a kid who was fed a steady diet of Looney Tunes and Three Stooges as a young’un, it was vibrating at my exact frequency. 

So then like all nerds do when they find something they like, I dove in. I needed to know everything. Who were these maniacs that made this thing? Why would they be allowed to do this? That’s when I found The State. A bunch of punk kids from NYU were given a sketch comedy show on MTV before they had even graduated. This was inspirational to me (but unfortunately would later become frustrating, and frankly insulting, as I passed them in years and was not gifted a sketch comedy television show). Then came Stella. I saw their Comedy Central show first (extremely underrated in my opinion, and cancelled too soon), and then I found their online shorts. It was all so wonderful. I wanted to make stuff like this.

So then imagine my elation when I found out these guys wrote a play! A real actual play, that you can buy the rights to and perform! Making your own sketches and uploading them to YouTube wasn’t really a thing yet, and also I don’t come from money so I didn’t have a way to record video because cell phones didn’t take videos yet. This was the only way I could see to express this love I had for this insanely silly style of comedy that I was so obsessed with. Sadly, the tyrannical gatekeepers of Lamar University kept me from realizing my vision.

Cut to now, many years later. I’m an absurdly successful improviser and comedian living in Austin, TX, and ColdTowne Theater ownership comes to me, hat in hand — “please Kyle, please, we need content. Please make something for us, anything.” So I pull my copy of SAKAWAB (again, cool to shorten stuff) off the shelf, we cough up the dough for the performance rights, and here we are. This play has all of the stuff that made me fall in love with Wet Hot American Summer, Stella, The State, and every other project from the people who made that stuff. It’s silly. It will give you whiplash as it delivers both a fart joke and a line of dialogue that is an unbelievably specific and accurate read on human behavior. People say words the wrong way for no reason. It’s just fun. Don’t think too hard about it. I hope this play makes you laugh like it makes me laugh, and if it can’t do that, then hopefully it makes you horny.

Get your tickets to Sex a.k.a. Weiners & Boobs, happening Saturdays through March 21 at ColdTowne Theater

Bye, 2019!

We’re less than 12 hours from entering 2020, a new year / entirely new decade, guaranteed to bring lots of change and growth at ColdTowne and around Austin and the world, but in a good way we hope!

Before we start the real countdown, we’re taking a look back on some celebratory moments around our neck of the Austin improv + comedy community at ColdTowne this last year.

Y’all We Asian kicked off the year with a completely sold out run of Starring Y’all We Asian, which placed the members of Austin’s only Asian-American improv troupe in major lead roles you can’t find in Hollywood. The troupe ended the year with a new weekly residency at 7 p.m. on Fridays at ColdTowne (starting January 3!) and a Critic’s Pick Award in Austin Chronicle’s Best of Austin 2019 poll.

While Prima Doñas didn’t have a main stage show this year, they did scoop up some awards for their shows in summer and fall 2018. The all-Latinx improv troupe (known for Latinauts and Latinacional) scooped up the award for best production in improvised theater at this year’s B. Iden Payne Awards held in November at the Austin Scottish Rite Theater to honor and recognize the thriving theater community in Austin for the 2018-2019 season. Directors Ben G. Bazán and Lilli Lopez were awarded Best Direction of an Improvised Play for the fall 2018 main stage show Latinacional at ColdTowne Theater. Prima Doñas was also awarded an Austin Critic’s Table Award for their performance at FUTURX Festival in 2018.

This year the troupe was invited to represent ColdTowne Theater and Austin Improv at the Del Close Marathon in Los Angeles this past June, the first festival in L.A. since moving from NYC. The troupe was back in L.A. in October for the Los Angeles Diversity in Comedy Festival hosted by Second City.

Sugar, Water, Purple celebrated a full year in their weekly Wednesday night slot! They also won the Rudy Kloptic Award at the 2019 B. Iden Payne Awards. You can read more about Sugar, Water, Purple and their show “Can We Kick It?” in this January 2019 review by the Austin Chronicle’s Trey Gutierrez.

Lots of Awards! One Hour Til Air earned the award for Best Cast Ensemble in Improvised Theater. Many of ColdTowne’s main stage shows also celebrated sold out show runs. Y’all love an intimate theater setting and we love y’all for it!

Pride Month Party with QueerTowne

QueerTowne held it down monthly with full crowds, complimentary bevvies including some support from Deep Eddy Vodka and Big Swig, and loving shouts out from Austin Chronicle’s Qmmunity. Hosts Mase Kerwick, Javi Ungo and Laura de la Fuente shared the stage with some of Austin’s finest citizens, community leaders and comedians. Mase’s favorite QueerTowne moment was the Pride Month Party in June. We don’t have access to photos from this exclusive event, but here’s one from Halloween!

 

ColdTowne Conservatory. We teach classes here!

We added several new faculty members to the ColdTowne Conservatory. As our conservatory grows, we are grateful to have true performers and teachers in the classroom for our students to train in improv and sketch. Read more about these new instructors and their backgrounds here: COLDTOWNE CONSERVATORY WELCOMED NEW FACULTY MEMBERS IN 2019

ColdTowne Staff Retreat 2019

This December ColdTowne ownership and staff went on a 24-hour retreat to reflect on the last year (decade tbh) and outline goals for the future. 2019 has been one of ColdTowne’s most fruitful years yet and we have our incredible community of creatives, performers, producers and students to thank for the many successes and recognition our little theater under a video store got to celebrate. We were lucky to have the opportunity to reflect on that gratitude collectively and all jokes aside (because we’re a comedy theater and have to make it clear sometimes), we hope you continue to stick with us through 2020 and this next decade.

Cheers to 2020 and the next 10! 

WEIRD GAY VIBES: Martini Ranch is back!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
WEIRD GAY VIBES
Saturdays (8:30-9:30 p.m.)
November 16 – December 21, 2019

This surreal sketch comedy show has no straight man. 

Austin, Texas – October 30, 2019 – Austin’s first and longest running LGBTQ sketch comedy team, Martini Ranch,

returns with a subversive, darkly comedic show titled “Weird Gay Vibes”. The original production will run at ColdTowne Theater for six Saturdays at 8:30 p.m. – November 16 through December 21.

After performing at San Francisco Sketch Fest earlier this year, Martini Ranch took time to focus on other projects before regrouping for “Weird Gay Vibes”, which will be their fourth and final sketch revue together. The show plays with the troupe’s favorite themes, from the confusion of entirely self-taught sex education, to icons of Latinx pop culture, to the corporatization of Pride.

“Weird Gay Vibes” was written and will be performed by Laura de la Fuente, Jake Garrison, Dylan Garsee, Mase Kerwick, Javier Ungo, Stephanie Vasquez Fonseca, Luke Wallens, and Irielle Wesley. Stepping into the director’s chair is founding Martini Ranch member Katie Stone, a recent B. Iden Payne nominee for Best Comedic Directing for her work on “An Evening with Chlane”. Stone also created all promotional artwork.

“Weird Gay Vibes” is produced by Bonica Ayala, B. Iden Payne nominee for “Liz Behan: One Woman at Dusk”, and Mase Kerwick, who has produced all previous Martini Ranch revues. Technical Direction is provided by Ilan Raschkovsky.

In November 2016, Second City alum Keith Horvath created Martini Ranch to write and perform “This is (Not) the Gayest Show You’ll Ever See”. Following the conclusion of that sold-out, seven-week run in 2017, Martini Ranch has since written and performed “Queer & Now” (2017-2018), “Hidden Valley” (2018), and now “Weird Gay Vibes (2019), in addition to performing at San Francisco Sketch Fest, Out of Bounds, Austin Sketch Fest, and BettyFest.

“Weird Gay Vibes” is rated ‘G’ for Gay and is recommended for mature audiences.

Questions? Contact masonkerwick@gmail.com.

 

Tickets

ColdTowne Theater is located at 4803-B Airport Boulevard, Austin, TX 78751. Tickets are $12 and can be purchased at www.coldtownetheater.com or at the door.

About ColdTowne Theater

ColdTowne Theater is Austin’s center for Chicago-style, long-form improv, with shows every night of the week. For phone reservations or more information, call (512) 817-TOWN, or visit www.ColdTowneTheater.com

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ColdTowne Anniversary Weekend is October 18-20!

A word from co-host of this year’s ColdTony awards, Javier Ungo

It’s October baby! It’s spoopy season, the winds are changing, there’s a slight chill in the air and like every October it’s time for the ColdTowne Anniversary Weekend! Our home away from home is turning 13 (Spoopy!) and like every year we have a weekend full of activities to celebrate!

Our resident queen Dylan Garsee is taking to the big stage at Spider House Ballroom to present their masterpiece Dylan Garsee: Live For One Night Only, For Two Nights”. Two evenings of comedy from the twisted and relentlessly gay mind of Dylan Garsee that will be part sketch, stand up and of course the return of demented and chaotic “Gayme Show” that will leave you asking “do gays deserve rights?” (Editor’s Note: a gay wrote this copy). Also featuring the relentlessly homosexual musings of sketch group Martini Ranch! Join Dylan Friday AND Saturday night at Spiderhouse Ballroom at 7pm.

 

Speaking of chaos, swing by ColdTowne Theater afterwards to experience the late night madness of the 13th Anniversary 

Lock In Show! What happens when the ColdTowne community of comedians is asked to sign up for 10 minute slots to do whatever they want on stage? Madness, pure and utter madness. Will flags be burned? Will people be waxed? Will ghosts from our past return to haunt the theater? Probably not because all that stuff has already happened so who knows what the hell will happen on stage this year! It will be hilarious! It will be insane! It will question your taste level on a deeply profound level! Join the madness Friday night at 11:30pm and Saturday at 11pm with FREE BEER courtesy of Thirsty Planet Brewing Company. Before the lock-in, you can peep the main stage shows: Echolake: Midsommar (spoopy af) and Angola: A Comedy (listen to the KUT Arts Eclectic interview here). 

And finally capping off the weekend will be the ColdTony Awards on Sunday night!  A night of glitz and glamour where the ColdTowne community comes together to celebrate and recognize a year of comedic excellence at ColdTowne Theater. This year ColdTowne finally had the good sense to ask gay people to run their awards show so hosting this year’s award show is the above mentioned queen Dylan Garsee and ColdTowne’s third favorite gay Javier Ungo! So pull out your good dress and kindly turn a look because you will be called out by the gays on stage if you just wear a plaid button up and jeans. Join us for the ColdTony Awards Sunday night at 8pm at Spider House Ballroom!

Vote for ColdTowne in Austin Chronicle’s Best of Austin 2019 poll!

Vote for ColdTowne in Austin Chronicle’s Best of Austin 2019 poll!

ColdTowne Theater is nominated in this year’s Best of Austin poll in the comedy club/venue category. We’ve been doing this for 13 years and we’re thrilled Austin has nominated us alongside our friends at Fallout Theater and Cap City. We’re also SUPER excited for the nods our talented performers received. Here’s our voting guide, for your consideration…

Obviously, we would love for you to vote for ColdTowne in the comedy club/venue category, but more than that, we’d love for you to join us for comedy any night of the week. 

Carina Magyar AND Ky Krebs, co-hosts and producers of Live at ColdTowne are both nominated for Best Stand-Up Comic this year! Both Carina and Ky have albums out for you

We have two amazing comedy troupes nominated this year. Y’all We Asian has performed sold out main stage runs at ColdTowne and often sell out their monthly show Last Friday Night at ColdTowne. Their next show is happening October 11. 

Girls Girls Girls is also on the ballot and while we’re not GGG’s forever home (these gals can be seen all over ATX), we love having them grace the ColdTowne stage regularly with their improvised musicals complete with choreo made up on the spot. Catch them on October 18 at ColdTowne

You may know Stephanie Thoreson from Loverboy on Friday nights at 8:30, but did you know she’s also an actress? Like many of our talented performers, Stephanie’s improv skills have lead to acting opportunities. Stephanie recently starred in “Good Feels On Wheels,” a feature film making its festival rounds this year. Stephanie is currently nominated for Best Actress in the Best of Austin poll and we fully endorse this multi-talented queen!

We hope these #FYCs help! Voting closes on October 7, so be sure to fill out your Best of Austin ballot ASAP. Vote in at least 40 categories, and you’ll be entered to win a badge for SXSW Film or SXSW Music, your choice. We’d like to give a special shout out to the Austin Chronicle for supporting local businesses like ColdTowne and for their continued support of ColdTowne main stage productions and weekly house shows and to YOU for being here. Y’all really are the best.

VOTE BY OCTOBER 7

Announcing ColdTowne Theater’s 25th Main Stage Season

From Will Cleveland, Artistic & Academic Director

Folx, we’re so thrilled and honored to have these creative teams bringing their shows to the ColdTowne Main Stage starting this fall. 

Echo Lake Midsommar 
October 04 – Nov 02
Produced by Echo Lake

A stay at a drug-filled pagan commune in rural Sweden might not be everyone’s ideal vacation, but Echo Lake knows you could use a good trip. After the opening series of seemingly incongruous sights, sounds and movements, “Midsommar” is a comedy of manners. Inspired by the recent Ari Aster film, comedians Courtney Hopkins, Lisa Jackson, Cortnie Jones & Valerie Ward create a festival of organic thoughts, movements and noises that dive deep into the unknown of folk horror, enhancing the dread in organic improv, and playing with our perceptions through a number of devices. Many things are possible in “Midsommar,” but the surest is that there’s nothing else like it. You all will be invited to participate, and who knows, you could be their next Queen.

Get Tickets on Eventbrite

Angola: A Comedy
October 05 – November 09
Directed by Ryan Darbonne & Frank Netscher, Produced by Amy Knop

Set in the Louisiana State Penitentiary (aka ‘Angola’), true stories – told by those directly affected by incarceration – inspire a satirical, yet grounded, look at our judicial system and the prison industrial complex. Told from the perspective of the people who inhabit its walls, Angola explores the minutiae of prison life and its relation to present day America.

Starring Joseph Juarez, Will Sitters, Yola Lu, Tauri Laws-Phillips, Kevin Anderson, Nathan Sowell, Stephanie Vasquez Fonseca, Quinn Buckner, Keylan Haynes and Lisa Jackson 

Get Tickets on Eventbrite

Hunnicut on Holiday
November 02 – November 23

One of ColdTowne’s first Monday Mash Teams, Hunnicut is moving to the weekend with a little help from some new friends. Hunnicut on Holiday explores some of the nation’s lesser known holidays like National Kitten Day, Middle Child Day, and the hilarious Earth Day. Thanks internet.

Hunnicut is Morgan Goetz, Julia Ham, Lisa Michelle Jackson, Matt Shirley, Jason Burnett, Adam Protextor, Audra Schroeder, Emmy Silak

Martini Ranch’s TBA 4th Sketch Review!
November 16 – December 21
Produced by Mase Kerwick and Directed by (B. Iden Payne nominated Dir.) Katie Stone

Cast TBA
Did you think Liz Behan and Way Down in the Hole was it for Queer Comedy on the Main Stage this year? Really? That’s a little homophobic.

Prayer Circle presents Ho-Ho-Holy Shit
November 30 – December 21
Written and produced by Prayer Circle 

These Christian Idiots have resurrected! This is Prayer Circles 2nd Sketch Show.

“My Own Worst Enemy”
January 04 – February 09
Directed by Amy Knop

Old Love, The Rose, Holy Shit: Amy Knop is a brilliant producer and is making her directorial debut. We’re in awe of Amy and this show is going to be a smash. “My Own Worst Enemy” is a ColdTowne Advanced Studies Capstone Show (FKA Nobody Likes Me).

Sex aka Weiners and Boobs
February 15 – March 22
Written by David Wain, Michael Showalter, and Joe Lo Truglio
Directed by Kyle Romero

A Play? A Written Play? Another one? Yes. Fans of The State, Stella, Wet Hot American Summer, this show is for you. This play is bonkers and filled wall to wall with jokes and gags. It was written in the 90’s. Will. It. Hold. Up?? With Kyle directing, it’s in great hands! Also there’s a scene from Glen Gary Glen Ross in this play and it’s great. There will be auditions for this show. 

Another Evening with Chlane
March 29 – May 02
Written by and Starring Lane & Chloe Ingram (B. Iden Payne nominated Cast, and Director)
Directed by Kyle Romero

That’s enough Plays Kyle. Please direct a sketch show. Another Evening with Chlane. Chlane. Chlane?! They sold out a 150 seat house at Seattle Sketch Fest…..married couple?? Yes. You got it now. Kyle’s directing two shows!