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January 12: Chicago Scene - Chicago Sketch Fest on the Chicago Scene

ConcertsMusicArtists

PerformInk has called Artistic Director Brian Posen one of the most influential people in the Chicago theater scene & New City named Brian as one of the top 30 Players who really perform in Chicago. Posen is the Artistic Director of Stage 773, Street Tempo Theatre & Liminality Theatre. He in the founder and Executive Producer of The Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival ("A raging Lakeview comedic beast" -Chicago Tribune), as well as the founder and director of The Cupid Players ("Best Sketch Comedy Group in Chicago"-Chicago Reader). Posen has been active in the Chicago theater scene for over 20 years as an actor, producer, director, and teacher. Posen's past theater company has received several awards including 'Jeff' and 'After Dark' awards. He is program head at the Second City Training Center, where he has been teaching improvisation since 1993, as well as teaching at Columbia College Chicago since 1994. Posen has also taught in countless number of institutions, including Actors Theater in Louisville and Steppenwolf Theater. He has performed in and directed hundreds of productions. Posen received his MFA in Acting from the University of Illinois. He is a member of SAG and AFTRA. Brian is also an ordained Minister.

Check out the Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival happening now at Stage 773 in Lakeview. The festival is host to 162 performances by 138 sketch comedy groups from all over the country.

www.chicagosketchfest.com773.327.5252

www.chicagosketchfest.com andwww.Stage773.com

CHICAGO –Stage 773 Artistic Director Brian Posen proudly announces the lineup for the 11th Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival. Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival, an annual event that celebrates the best in local, national and international sketch comedy, runs January 5 - 15, 2012. All performances take place at the recently renovated Stage 773 building, located at 1225 W. Belmont. The festival's performance dates and times are: Thursdays at 8, 9 and 10 p.m., Fridays at 8, 9, 10 and 11 p.m., Saturdays at 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11 p.m. and Sundays 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 p.m. NOTE: Family programming is on Saturday, Jan. 7 at 1 and 2 p.m. Tickets are $14 each Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays and $15 each on Saturdays. Festival passes can be purchased for $160 ($150 before December 31). Tickets are currently on sale and tickets purchased before December 31 will receive a $2 discount and may be purchased at www.Stage773.com, by phone at 773.327.5252, and in person at Stage 773 box office.

Highlights of the festival below and to view the entire Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival Schedule click here. Note: Groups and times could change, so check back regularly. This year's festival is especially exciting for Posen and the Stage 773 team because, though Sketch Fest has been held at 1225 W. Belmont since it began in 2002, this is the first year the festival is held in the recently, and massively, renovated building that is now run by Stage 773. The venue now hosts four stages increasing the number of performers the thousands of fans that attend the festival may see each day. To view the entire Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival Schedule click here.

Highlights of the 11th annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival includes the return of festival favorites FUCT (New York), Heavywait (Los Angeles), The Cupid Players (Chicago), Sweat (Portland), Reformed Whores (New York), Dead Power Point (Toronto), The Cool Table (Los Angeles) and Camp Woods. Local favorites that have performed at nearly every Sketch Fest, if not all, include The Cupid Players, Salsation Theatre Company, GayCo Productions, The Backrow and Stir Friday Night!. Patrons can expect numerous other past Sketch Fest favorites, exciting new talent and family programming throughout the festival.

The afternoon of Saturday, Jan.7 features the Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival Kids, Teens and Family day. This mini-festival is building the next generation of sketch performers and features 12 groups performing especially for and primarily performed by kids and teens.

In the two weekends (eight days) from January 5 – 15, 2012, more than 800 artists from 130 sketch comedy troupes will perform more than 170 shows for the largest ever Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival – and the largest sketch comedy festival America has ever seen. The entire schedule for the 11h Annual Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival may be viewed at: ChicagoSketchfest.com.

About Stage 773

Stage 773 celebrates off-Loop Chicago performing arts and artists. Formerly known as Lukaba Productions, Stage 773 is a non-profit Chicago company that produces The Cupid Players, Bri-Ko, The Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival, Street Tempo Theatre and other programs, as well as offering subsidized theater rental space to the hundreds of Chicago's itinerant off-Loop companies and performers. Stage 773 is located at 1225 W. Belmont (the former Theatre Building Chicago); Stage 773's four theaters are home to performances by some of Chicago's most innovative, creative and passionate off-Loop performing artists. Stage 773 recently completed a more than $1.5 million renovation, which features:

o Redesigned Belmont Avenue façade;o Increased amount of light in the lobby and an opened lobby to street side viewing with the addition of floor to ceiling windows along Belmont Avenue;o Transformed the West Theater into two new flexible spaces, which include "The Cab," a cabaret (69 seats) and "The Box," a blackbox theatre (80 seats). These spaces are ideal for smaller theater companies, dance companies, cabaret singers, magical shows, improv groups and more;

o Completely overhauled the South Theater, now called "The Pro" (148 Seats), including relocating the stage and seating to allow for easier load-in, better sound proofing, and convenient audience access. In addition, the South Theatre is ideal for dance companies;

o Modernized and doubled the number of lavatories;o New box office/concierge desko New administration offices, ando New lobby and bar area.

The building continues to be a venue for some of Chicago's most respected theater and dance companies as well as a place for budding new talent. Other Stage 773 productions that will perform at the new space include The Cupid Players, The Chicago Sketch Comedy Festival, the newly created Street Tempo Theatre, Liminality Theatre and The Cabaret Series. For more information on the renovation or a list of current events at Stage 773 visit Stage773.com or call 773.929.7367.

The 11th Annual Chicago Sketch Festival runs January 5 – January 15, 2012. All performances will take place at Stage773, located at 1225 W. Belmont. The festival's performance dates and times are: Thursdays at 8, 9 and 10 p.m., Fridays at 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11 p.m., Saturdays at 6, 7, 8, 9, 10 and 11 p.m., and Sundays 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8 p.m. NOTE: Family programming is on Saturday, Jan. 7 at 1 and 2 p.m. Tickets are $14 each on Thursdays, Fridays and Sundays and $15 each on Saturdays. Festival passes can be purchased for $160 ($150 before December 31). Tickets are currently on sale and tickets purchased before December 31 receive a $2 discount and may be purchased at www.Stage773.com, by phone at 773.327.5252, and in person at the Stage 773 box office.

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
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