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Magnet Theater Blog: News and Ideas about Comedy, Improv Shows & Classes in NYC

Wednesday August 21, 2013, 1:43pm - by WillyAppelman

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Reductress, founded by Magnet Theater’s Beth Newell & Sarah Pappalardo, was recently named in The Top 100 Websites for Women by Forbes Magazine. Reductress is the only fake women’s news magazine and features many Magnet Theater writers and performers. They have been featured on The Huffington Post, Bust, Bitch Magazine and The Daily Dot. If you have yet to check Reductress out, you should do it…now.

Thursday August 15, 2013, 6:34pm - by WillyAppelman

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We’re very excited to announce the next round of The Circuit, which will begin Friday, October 4th, 2013!

Applications for Circuit teams will open the first week of September and applicants will be chosen by lottery. If chosen, you will be placed on a team of 8 improvisers and assigned a coach. You will rehearse with your coach and team once a week, with rotating performances on Friday nights at 10PM at the Magnet Studio Theater.

If you have completed Level 3 of Magnet’s Training Program and are not part of a Magnet house improv team, you are eligible to apply.

The Circuit is a great way to gain experience in being in an improv ensemble. We highly encourage you to apply.

Stay tuned for more information and announcements regarding applications in the next few weeks. Thank you and we are looking forward to an exciting new season of The Circuit!

If you have any questions, please email us at circuit [at] magnettheater [dot] com.

Thursday August 8, 2013, 11:00am - by Charlie Whitcroft

The Blackout

“The Blackout” is the newest installment of The Director Series, a 5-week series of performances wherein a Director selects a cast and presents a different form. This month Louis Kornfeld is directing The Blackout, featuring Phoebe Tyers, Alexis Lambright, Ely Aina Rapoza, Rebecca Robles, Charlie Whitcroft, Rob Penty, Eli Itzkowitz, and Desiree Nash.

Blackout Cast

Photo by Woody Fu

This past Thursday saw the premier of “The Blackout”, a unique and refreshing improv show relying solely on scenework. The cast, proficient in subtlety and poise, performed the series of scenes in two and three person combinations that came together naturally and comfortably to fill the hour with standalone vignettes and thematic revisitations under the direction and technical expertise of Director Louis Kornfeld.

Photo by Woody Fu

Photo by Woody Fu

Photo by Woody Fu

The audience watched childhood friends discussing the ups and downs of having two mothers, a needy secretary fail to grasp the humor of a screen-saver, a married couple deal with three years of built up frustration and resentment, teens peeping on their “girlfriend” undressing in her bedroom, and a man out himself to passengers on his plane during a recreational flight, among many other episodes. Never a dull moment, while all of the energy of this show flowed steadily and with intention.

There are four more opportunities to catch “The Blackout” – August 8th, 15, 22 and 29th at 9:00pm at The Magnet Theater!

This was a re-blogged review from Charlie Whitcroft.

Monday August 5, 2013, 2:57pm - by WillyAppelman

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Magnet Theater will be holding auditions for the fall season of Megawatt. Auditions will be held Friday, August 23rd with callbacks on Sunday, August 25th. To be eligible, performers need to have completed Magnet Level 6 Team Performance Workshop. Please note that due to the limited number of slots auditions are not guaranteed.

To apply, please follow THIS LINK and fill out the availability form no later than August 15h. Confirmations will be sent out on August 16th.

Friday July 26, 2013, 1:27pm - by WillyAppelman

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In July, The Director’s Series presented Medusa, directed by Nick Kanellis (Trike). I talked with Nick about the form, the future of improv and his views on physical improv.

What is the form behind Medusa?
The main idea behind the form of Medusa is that all of the improvisers are onstage the entire time, so even if you aren’t a speaking character in a scene, you are responsible for playing a part of the environment. Other than that it’s similar to a montage or loose harold, with 3-4 first beat scenes and a group game followed by expansions on those scenes and a run. Because everyone has to be on stage the whole time, it lends itself to some really cool transformations and characters inspired by physicality.

Is comedy from physicality/movement essential in improv?
I don’t think it’s ESSENTIAL in improv, as some forms (like the bat or an improvised radio piece) don’t have any physicality/movement at all, but I do LOVE physical comedy and think it’s a fantastic way to make a piece resonate more!

What is the future of the Medusa form/physical improv? How could it possibly change/evolve?
A lot of inspiration can come from physicality and it’s always fun to see new ways that improvisers figure out how to SHOW the stories they are telling. A lot of my favorite moments from Medusa shows have been watching the improvisers discover unique ways to utilize stage picture and one another’s bodies to show things that normally aren’t shown in improv. I look forward to exploring more ways that a group of people can work together to make anything they can imagine appear on an empty stage!

Thursday July 18, 2013, 12:24pm - by Charlie Whitcroft

Revolver(web)

If you’ve never seen Junior Varsity, Hello Laser, or The Boss perform at the Magnet Theater, I’m guessing you’ve had some longstanding obligation on Thursday nights for the last several years.

They’re the Magnet Theater’s longest standing, longest standing teams – veterans who’ve been performing high quality improv together for almost seven years. That’s a length of time most people can’t even wrap their heads around in this ever-more present-focused world of ours.

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Now they’re loading themselves up into chambers randomly (not really randomly… there’s a set schedule) for a weekly round of Russian Roulette known as The Revolver. Each week you’ll see two of these teams perform, each in their own unique and seasoned styles.

Come out and see them, every Thursday Night at 8pm.

Then talk to them afterwards. Being around so long, they have stories to tell.

Tuesday July 16, 2013, 2:23pm - by WillyAppelman

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Congrats to Alexis Lambright (Bloomer) and Mallory Schlossberg (The Jezebelles) on having their one woman shows accepted into the 2013 NYC Fringe Festival! We’re very proud of both shows, which have been performed and developed on The Magnet stage! Mallory’s, “Molly Marjorie Rosenblatt Needs A Man (and other stuff)” and Alexis’s, “The Alexis Lambright Tell-A-Thon: Combating Adult Virginity”, will be playing in August in theaters around NYC. Be sure to check both of these shows out! Show Info Here!

Monday June 10, 2013, 1:02pm - by WillyAppelman

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The Magnet Theater is proud to announce the newest members of Magnet Sketch Teams! Thank you to everyone who applied! Sketch teams perform every Sunday at 9 pm.

FAT KIDS
David Sewell
Chet Siegel
Becca Schall
Andrew Mills
Robert Ramsey
John Kitsis
Sebastian Conelli
Billy Bob Thompson
Megan Meadows

DISPACHO
Ruby Marez
Alex Marino
Todd Shaeffer
Adam Twitchell
Ingrid Ostby
Robert Kern
Steph Garcia
Pat May
Emily Johnson
Marcus Brunt

RISKY BOTTOM
Janie Stolar
Gretchen Poole
Jana Schmieding
Matt Antonucci
Lauren Olson
Matt Wassung
Rob Webber
Joe Lepore
Kevin Lalka

JACKTOWN
Shalini Tripathi
Alan Fessenden
Joe Miles
Sean Taylor
Kelly Warne
Gwen Mesco
James O’Connell
Kate Emswiler
Darrel Haynes
Matt Alston

Thursday June 6, 2013, 12:41pm - by WillyAppelman

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Every Thursday in June, we’ve got a brand new Magnet Video! These are videos shot from live shows at The Magnet Theater. Enjoy this weeks scene from Chet Siegel(The Boss) and Megan Gray(Junior Varsity), about siblings having a fight over “magazines”. Watch The Video HERE! Stay Tuned for more!

Friday May 24, 2013, 4:56pm - by WillyAppelman

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Due to the Memorial Day Holiday, there will be limited classes on Saturday, May 25th and NO classes on Sunday, May 26th and Monday, May 27th, the Training Center will be closed. There will also be NO SHOWS on Sunday, May 26th. Please check with your teacher or the school director (schooldirector@magnettheater.com) if you have any questions.