Genre: Comedy, Musical, Festival

Magnet Theaterpresents the third annual New York Musical Improv Festivalfrom November 1 – 6, 2011 at 254 W. 29th Street, ground floor (between 7th and 8th Avenues), NYC.  Tickets are available at or  Most tickets are $10-$15 and feature performances by two different musical improv acts per show.


Over 150 performers from across the country will be converging on the Magnet Theater - from San Francisco, Chicago, Boston, Washington D.C., Minneapolis, Austin TX, and across NYC to create fully improvised musical performances - from traditional musical theatre to the cutting edge. The Magnet Theater is recognized as the center for musical improv study and performance in the U.S.


On Sunday, November 6, 2011, the Festival presents a performance to benefit Gilda’s Club New York City to

raise funds and awareness for people living with cancer.


Baby Wants Candy (NYC), Clown Car to Sicily (Chicago), Tale of Two Genres (UN-Scripted Theatre Company, San Francisco, CA), The BEATDown - featuring Chris “Shockwave” Sullivan and Victor Varnado (UCB, NYC), Glennis McMurray’s “Dream Team” Show (NYC), Trudy Carmichael's Musical Mixer (Las Vegas/NYC), The Made-Up Musical (Magnet Theater, NYC), Tara Copeland (Los Angeles), Jill Bernard’s Drum Machine (HUGE Theatre, Minneapolis, Minn.), Beees (Magnet Theater, NYC), Diamond Lion (UCBeast, NYC), North Coast (NYC), Aquarius (Magnet Theater, NYC), Reset List: An Improvised Rock Experience (Chicago), Girls Girls Girls Improvised Musicals (Austin, TX), Stacked (Chicago), Rosencrantz (Magnet Theater, NYC), Hidden Falls (Improv Boston, Boston, MA.), Vox Pop (Washington, D.C.), Happy Karaoke Fun Time (Annoyance Theater, Chicago), Choral Rage presents: The Rock Opera (Magnet Theater, NYC), Mansical (Chicago), A/C (the P.I.T., NYC), Mikki Hommel (The National Underground, NYC), Wilder and Wilder (Voodoo Comedy Playhouse, Denver, Colorado), VEAL (NYC), Proverbial Loons (Castillo Theater, NYC), Hello (the P.I.T., NYC), and Mint Condition (Magnet Theater, NYC).


The New York Musical Improv Festival also featuring up and coming performers in the NYMIF Initial Public Offering (I.P.O.). Performing this year are Alfred (Columbia University, NYC), American Idlez (The P.I.T., NYC), Dumpster Tequila (The Player’s Theater, NYC), Hit and Run Musical Improv (Voodoo Comedy Playhouse, Denver, CO), Meaningfül Touch (Magnet Theater, NYC), and 10 £ Ally (NYC).


Most tickets are $10-$15 and include performances by two different musical improv acts per show. Tickets are available at or by phone at 800-838-3006. See schedule on for details.


A/C (the P.I.T., NYC) - Ashley Ward and Chris Grace have been sequestered away, putting the finishing polish on a two-person musical improv group featuring thrilling songs, hilarious scenes, and the fun and familiarity that only two long-time friends could bring to the stage.


Aquarius (Magnet Theater, NYC) is a musical house team at the Magnet Theater. From a single suggestion, Aquarius spins a musical tale full of heroes and villains, highs and lows, dreams and nightmares, something and its opposite. Delight in their fantasies! "Water" you waiting for?


Baby Wants Candy (NYC) has established itself in New York and Chicago as the only musical improv group to perform a fully-improvised one-act musical with a full band. Based on a single audience suggestion of a title, the actors and musicians work together harmoniously to deliver a hilarious evening's entertainment.


The BEATDown - featuring Chris “Shockwave” Sullivan and Victor Varnado (UCB, NYC) - Bringing freestyling to the next level, Chris "Shockwave" Sullivan (Freestyle Love Supreme, The Electric Company) and Victor Varnado host some of New York City's finest comedians and one audience volunteer in "The BEATdown." It's a freestyle rap face-off decided by the audience - with badass one-on-one rap battles. You saw 8 Mile, right? Like that, but funnier.


BEEES!!! (Magnet Theater, NYC) - As a Musical Megawatt house team at the Magnet Theater, BEEES!!! spontaneously creates a longform narrative musical based on an audience member’s suggestion. Every song, line and hip gyration is improvised on the spot as BEEES!!! brings you to a world full of melodrama, complex relationships, and fun times.


Choral Rage presents: The Rock Opera (Magnet Theater, NYC) - Belonging to one of the Magnet Theater's maiden voyage Musical Megawatt Teams, Choral Rage creates an out of this world musical journey into the depths of your imagination. Through their masterful harmonies and comedic colloquy, they create an entire Rock Opera based on the suggestion of a location.


Clown Car to Sicily (Chicago) - Comprised of graduates of the Second City Training Center's Musical Improv Conservatory program in Chicago, Clown Car to Sicily is an improv and sketch comedy group that will make'a you happ-ay! Using various music improv forms, genres, and styles, we combine long form improvised musicals and short form games with stylistic sketches and meta-theatrical satire. We constantly push the limits of mainstream and walk the line of what is sacred and what is...hilarious!


Diamond Lion (UCBeast, NYC) - Some of New York's top improvisors create a fully improvised musical out of thin air. Its more awesome than a lion - it’s a Diamond Lion. The added twist - one talented improvisor with NO musical improv experience joins the cast for that one show only - and keeps up with the pros.


Girls Girls Girls Improvised Musicals (Austin, TX) - Founded in 2002, is Austin, Texas' oldest all-female improvisation troupe. Their specialty is creating long-form improvised Broadway musicals from a single audience suggestion. The Girls and their live musicians make up the songs, dances, characters, and stories all on the spot to create one complete story.


Glennis McMurray’s “Dream Team” Show (NYC) - Top performers create a one-night only “Dream Team” show hosted and curated by veteran NY comedian/actress/improvisor Glennis McMurray. Glennis co-created and starred in the critically acclaimed I Eat Pandas (Time Out New York Critics Pick, ECNY Award-winner: Best Improv Group), produced and starred in Dream Role, and performs with the NY cast of Baby Wants

Candy. Glennis is inviting her favorite performers to a “Key Party” - a one night only comedic free-for-all to close out the NY Musical Improv Festival.


Happy Karaoke Fun Time (Annoyance Theater, Chicago) is a musically improvised show where improv and Karaoke come together to create a world in which scenes explode into popular songs you'll recognize with lyrics you won't, made up entirely on the spot. We begin with an audience suggestion and their pick of a track off our ever-changing playlist of karaoke tracks. That song becomes the opening number of a long form musical.

Hello (the P.I.T., NYC) takes a suggestion from the audience to create an entire world of musical performance. Conceived and performed on the spot, before your eyes, this musical montage will last one night and then fade away forever, except in your memory.


Hidden Falls (Improv Boston, Boston, MA.) is a small town, full of ordinary people who carry not-so- ordinary secrets. Secrets that can only be revealed through song! Each show is a completely improvised musical based on two suggestions from our audience, what is our town known for and what is something you want to do before you die. From there we create a musical that sees the townspeople struggle with the decision to stay in Hidden Falls or leave forever to follow their dreams.


Jill Bernard’s Drum Machine (HUGE Theatre, Minneapolis, Minn.) is a sweepingly epic historical improvised one woman musical featuring Jill Bernard of HUGE Theater in Minneapolis, and the Zoom Rhythmtrack 123, nature's finest drum machine. Drum Machine returns to the NYMIF by popular demand after headlining last year’s benefit concert for Gilda’s Club NYC. Jill Bernard is a fan favorite, performing and teaching across the country.


The Made-Up Musical (Magnet Theater, NYC) is the longest running improvised musical in NYC. Seen every Friday night at the Magnet Theater for over 4 years now. Based on an audience interview, the Made-Up Musical constructs a never-before-seen musical with fully improvised lyrics, music, characters, scenes, and movement.


Mansical (Chicago) - Using a single suggestion from the audience, the seven handsome men of Mansical improvise a fully realized musical joy ride comprised of scenes, songs, harmonies, dancing, rapping and wigs. Our shows do not follow a single plot but instead explore the suggestion via mad hyper-agreement, free-play and musicality.


Mikki Hommel (The National Underground, NYC) is a singer/songwriter based on the Lower East Side. Her sets includes original and fully improvised songs based off of suggestions by the audience. Mikki’s influences include Eric Hutchinson, Gavin DeGraw, Adele, Aretha Franklin and Stephen Lynch. Has performed at New York and Broadway Comedy Club, The Village Lantern, The Bitter End, Pianos, The National Underground (resident) along with other venues around the city.


Mint Condition (Magnet Theater, NYC) - They're fresh, they're clean, they are Mint Condition! Based off of the single suggestion of an interesting name, Mint Condition brings you a fully improvised musical of the harrowing, sad, funny, inspiring, and sometimes fantastical journey of one man, or woman, or thing! Mint Condition will brighten smiles, keep mouths happy, and give full long-lasting flavor due to their strong harmonies, sense of play, and love of improv. That is Mint Condition!


North Coast! (NYC) - Now that the east coast/west coast beef has subsided, North Coast! is stepping up to throw down. Watch as New York’s only freestyle rapping, beatboxing, long-form improv team performs a fully improvised "hip hopera" right in front of yo mouf. You bring your favorite rap lyric and North Coast! will make your gut bust and your head bop. And if you don’t know, now you know.


Proverbial Loons (Castillo Theater, NYC) - The Castillo Theatre's house team has performed together for years. The Proverbial Loons strive to create "improv comedy with heart." Two audience volunteers are invited onstage for a "living room-style" conversation. The cast gets to know them and improvises a musical comedy, weaveing together the affectionately embellished lives of the two audience members.


Reset List: An Improvised Rock Experience (Chicago) - Reset List presents a completely improvised rock concert where chord progressions, lyrics, harmonies, dance breaks, and all that goes on in between is made up on the spot. Audience suggestions fill out the set list each night. No song is ever sung twice and every night is a brand new show with a completely new set list.


Rosencrantz (Magnet Theater, NYC) invites you to open up and share one of the deepest and darkest secrets you've ever been told. As recompense for this deed, they will transform that piece of private knowledge into a colorful musical tale that is destined to be fraught with laughter, danger and intrigue!


Stacked (Chicago) is an all-female music improv team from Chicago. Stacked is playful, sassy and high energy. They take a single suggestion, perform short monologues and then bring them to life with songs, tag- outs and harmony.


Tale of Two Genres (UN-Scripted Theatre Company, San Francisco, CA) is an improvised musical in the style of the audience's choice-as if written by Charles Dickens. The audience supplies the genre, and the Un- Scripted Theater Company interprets it through a Dickensian lens. With costumes and live improvised music, the actors play multiple roles and take turns as wry narrator, performing a musical in the chosen genre--be it Greek Tragedy or Gilligan's Island--as Dickens might have written it, imagining from his Victorian London.


Tara Copeland (Los Angeles) - A dynamic veteran improviser and performer, Tara is a member of the group Mother, who invented the forms The SleepOver and The Soundtrack, and the group Ms. Jackson (2004 ECNY Best Improv Group). Tara has also appeared on Curb Your Enthusiasm, Late Night with Conan O’Brien, Best Week Ever, and the movie College Road Trip. She performs regularly with Baby Wants Candy and The Made Up Musical.


Trudy Carmichael's Musical Mixer (Las Vegas/NYC) - This late night festival favorite challenges you to try your lady (and manly) luck at making up music side-by-side with some of the finest Musical Improvisers in the country! Anyone can sign up to perform - even if it’s your first time. Keep your bankroll stashed because admission to the Mixer is 100% free! Hosted by Vegas Lounge Legend and Lush Miss Trudy Carmichael and the incomparable Frankie Keys, tickling the ivories.


VEAL (The Player’s Theater, NYC) takes an audience suggestion, throws it in the Veal machine and creates an amazingly colorful, musical, choreographed piece of musical improv for everyone to enjoy. Memorable characters, songs, and dances for all!


Vox Pop (Washington, D.C.) picks up where the spoken word leaves off. It is a musical improv show about relationships. The audience suggests a relationship. Vox Pop brings that relationship to life - the ups and the downs - entirely in song. Not one word of dialogue is spoken.


Wilder and Wilder (Voodoo Comedy Playhouse, Denver, Colorado) - Stephen Wilder is just one man. But for the next half hour, he'll play as many men (and women) as he can as he conjures a fully improvised Broadway musical from just the suggestion of a title. Hopefully he'll live to see the ending!


The NYMIF I.P.O. (Initial Public Offering) featuring new and emerging performers


ALFRED (Columbia University, NYC) is a college musical improv troupe all the way from Columbia, at 116th and Broadway, that focuses on long form musical improv. We have no connection to Alfred Hitchcock, Alfred Molina, Alfred the Butler, or Alfred Lord Tennyson - or do we?


American Idlez (The P.I.T., NYC) is a musical improv team of the highest caliber. Born out of American Spirit, the mind of Simon Cowell, and the love of all things musical improv, the Idlez perform fast and furious montages of new musicals the likes the world has never seen before or since.


Dumpster Tequila (NYC) Dumpster Tequila warms your heart with an off-beat brand of musical improv, from one audience member suggestion, they create scenes, stories, and musical numbers on the spot. They have performed at every major improv theater in NYC and improv festivals across the country! Come see what everyone is singing about.


Hit ‘N Run Musical Improv (Voodoo Comedy Playhouse, Denver, Colorado) Colorado's ONLY improvised musical! Based on multiple suggestions from the audience, Hit ‘N Run Musical Improv creates a fully improvised musical with complex harmonies, a satisfying story, and really catchy songs.


Meaningfül Touch performs an improvised musical monoscene that seamlessly blends scene work and song. The rag-tag crew felt the love when they met in an historic Magnet Theater class taught by Tara Copeland, and couldn't get enough of her "meaningful touch" pre-performance embrace (and thus named themselves in her honor).


10£ Ally brings you their refreshing musical monoscene featuring the stylings of Oscar Montoya, Lorraine Cink and Ryan Dunkin. The first and only improv team to ever be invited to join Nato; we’ll pick you when you are down, send you rations when you are starving and help you overthrow whoever is getting you down all through the medium of song and dance.


Magnet Theater arrived in March of 2005.  Founders Armando Diaz, Ed Herbstman, and Alex Marino came together with the common goal of teaching improvisation and sketch writing, while developing and presenting fantastic comedy shows and other diverse entertainments and art.  Magnet Theater’s founders studied under long-form Chicago improv guru Del Close at ImprovOlympic and have since helped to shape the New York comedy scene dramatically through teaching, performing and presenting comical theatrics individually and together.


Magnet Theateroffers a full schedule of classes for all levels of experience with new classes forming regularly. All classes are based on The Magnet Theater Core Curriculum, which provides students with a solid foundation in improv fundamentals coupled with ample performance opportunities.  For more information about classes at Magnet Theateror to register, visit


Magnet Theater hosts performances every night from 6:30pm to midnight at 254 W. 29th Street, ground floor (between 7th and 8th Avenues), NYC.  Show times and descriptions can be found at  Seating is general admission.  Lobby opens 30 minutes prior to each show.  Beer and wine are for sale (Brooklyn Lager, Blue Moon, Stella, Red Stripe, Pabst, Delle Venezie Pinot Grigio, Monjardin Chardonnay, Tilia Malbec Syrah, and Glamour Puss Pinot Noir).  No drink minimum.  Wheelchair-accessible.  Air-conditioned.


For more information, visit

Open:   11/01/11
Close:   11/06/11

Multiple shows
Theater:   Magnet Theater
Address:   254 W 29th St (btwn 7th & 8th Aves)
New York, NY
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Buy Tickets Online or Call: Brown Paper Tickets at 1-800-838-3006