There are two teams on this particular night, Team Lincoln and Team Buddha. And the house is packed. It’s standing room only at the Magnet Training Center Studio, and the crowd is laughing.
The Circuit was the brainchild of Mark Grenier, the Magnet’s Senior Level One instructor. I told Magnet that I wanted to write a blog post about The Circuit, and it was really overdue, so when I saw Mark in the elevator I cornered him awkwardly and peppered him with questions. “It’s about stage time. Nothing beats stage time.” Mark tried to leave but I pressed all the buttons. Trapped, he told me that the team structure at Magnet worked well but there were skilled players ready to be on stage that had yet to win a slot on a Megawatt team. “They weren’t being served because just waiting for the next round of team auditions is not the best way to prepare for team auditions. So we built The Circuit.” I was satisfied by this answer and let him go. But it was fun making him feel uncomfortable, and I wanted more.
“…just waiting for the next round of team auditions is not the best way to prepare for team auditions. So we built The Circuit.”
So The Circuit works like this: every Friday night at 10pm, three of the current six Circuit teams perform the Harold. Teams exist for three months – enough time to perform a good amount of shows before the next round of Circuit teams replace the current ones.
The Circuit features Harold teams made-up of both current Magnet students and veteran performers.
After three months, the teams are burned up in a secret sacred ritual and then new Circuit teams rise from the ashes like a comedy phoenix. This is also known as selecting teams through a lottery. Later when I followed Mark to his apartment, got naked, climbed his fire escape, and stood outside his window, I asked about this crazy lottery idea. He said performers apply, and then names are picked out of a hat. “It’s fast, it’s simple, and it’s equally fair to everyone across the board.” Then he called the police and I ran. I totally got away.
Want to be on a Circuit team? Anyone who has completed Magnet Level 3 or higher (and is not currently on a Megawatt team or in Team Performance Workshop) can apply. Performers will be chosen randomly by lottery. Teams will rehearse weekly with a coach and have a three month run of shows on Friday nights at the Studio Theater.
To apply, just email firstname.lastname@example.org. Your email will be thrown into a computer hat, and then names will be selected by a robot which looks like this:
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