The Seattle International Comedy Competition has never, as far as I know, produced a competition show at the venerable Wing-It Productions theater (the home of Jet City Improv) in the U-District before…but we were welcomed there on a rainy Sunday night for the Fifth Show of Preliminary Week One of our 33rd Annual event.
It is a great theater…and the audience is really close–as would certainly benefit performers in an improv show. Luckily, our own host and “Master Improviser” Rick Kunkler was able to take advantage of that fact throughout the show.
With this being the second to last show, a little bit of “strategery” was in evidence…because every competitor was scrambling for enough points to push them into the Top 5 for this week. Make the Weekly Top 5 and you move on to the Semi-Finals (and that’s where the fun is!) It was interesting to see some performers change their game a bit. Others, however, kept dancing with the girl they brought. Which approach would work best?
Well, one new face made their way into the end of the night photograph, identifying the performers who made the Nightly Top 5. That would be Erik Allen–who did change up his set a bit and was rewarded for it with a 4th place finish. (On the other hand, Mike Coletta–who made his first top 5 of the week in the late show on Saturday night–had another strong finish, just missing the Top 5 in 7th place…and Mike has hammered out the same strong showcase set night after night.) So, I guess the answer to the (meant to be rhetorical) question that ended the previous paragraph might be a shoulder shrug and “Both???”
Here’s a look at the official order of finish for Night Five…
Preliminary Week One-Show Five Nightly Top Five
1) Elliot Maxx (Ballard, WA)
2) Michael Malone (Los Angeles, CA)
3) Ricarlo Flanagan (Detroit, MI)
4) Erik Allen (Los Angeles, CA/Minneapolis, MN)
5) Justin Leon (Kansas City, MO)
Now, of course, if you look at the photograph of the Nightly Top 5 from Show 5 of Preliminary Week One, you will not see the nightly winner in that photograph. That is because Elliot Maxx cannot be photographed. Many theories exist as to why this is…but science has not been able to prove anything beyond a reasonable doubt.
For those of you following the competition from home, rest assured that an individual known as Elliot Maxx does in fact exist–he’s not like Bigfoot or an undecided voter.
MONDAY NIGHT November 5th
Preliminary Week One-Show Six (8pm)
COMEDY UNDERGROUND, SEATTLE
This is a big show. Not only are the judges for this show members of the industry–putting additional pressure on our 17 Preliminary Week performers to do their very best…but this is also the show that decides which five of these performers will move on to the Semi-Finals…and which 12 will, sadly, end their 2012 competition experience here.
This is an excellent group of comedians. If you can make this last show of this week, you really should!