Want to read about it? OK, then…
The Kirkland Performance Center is one of our favorite places to bring the competition–and on this night after Thanksgiving, we were reminded exactly why. Not only is the facility brilliant but the crowd is always a joy to perform for… This night, the third night of the Finals Week of the 34th Annual Seattle International Comedy Competition, the Kirkland Performance Center was completely sold out–every seat filled with a crowd ready to laugh. (Could it be that everybody needed some laughs on the day after Thanksgiving? Or that everybody wanted to laugh off some of the calories from the leftovers they were enjoying today? Everyone’s got a theory!)
Nights like tonight, every performer has an excellent opportunity to get their distinct comedic perspective across. The audience is smart, so they get all the references and the jokes, and they’re willing to give every performer the chance to succeed. So, beginning to end, this was a hot show. Dave Merheje, who went up first, was hilarious as usual…and Rodger Lizaola, who went up last, put some extra mustard on his set tonight in order to grab a good score and stay in contention. Trenton Davis, Zoltan Kaszas and Graham Kay certainly delivered the comedy flavor in between Dave and Rodger.
The judges on this night enjoyed everyone, but they split their votes between Zoltan and Graham for the top spot on the night. Zoltan was the top scorer on three of the five judges’ scoresheets and Graham was a very close second on two of those scoresheets. Graham took top honors on the remaining two judges’ scoresheets–both of them perfect scores!–but Zoltan was a close second on each of those scoresheets.
It was close, but for the second night in a row, the top honors for the night went to Zoltan Kaszas. That makes two nightly wins and a second place finish in the three nights of finals that have been held so far!
Here’s the order of finish for the night:
SICC-34: Finals Week-Night Three Results
1- Zoltan Kaszas (San Marcos, CA)
2- Graham Kay (Toronto, ON)
3- Rodger Lizaola (Seattle, WA)
4- Trenton Davis (Chicago, IL)
5- Dave Merheje (Toronto, ON)
Two nights remain. Two shows for our five finalists to snag some big numbers from the judges and stake their claim on this year’s championship. The math is insane and this race is much too close to call.
And the show on Saturday night at the Admiral Theater in Bremerton is a wild-card. While we always have good shows there, over the years there have been some rather curious results delivered by the judges at the Bremerton show–which has upped the tension level of the competition on into the last night of finals (Sunday at the Comedy Underground) where someone will be crowned as the new champion of this event.
Zoltan, who has a slight lead thanks to his two nightly wins, loses the benefit of the incredible luck he had in drawing three straight nights where he would go up third in the order (not too early, when crowds are often still tight, and not too late, when crowds often get tired.) Zoltan will go up last in Bremerton and first at the Comedy Underground.
Dave is right behind Zoltan, just a half point behind. A half point, in this competition, is nothing and can be made up in just one night.
Both Graham and Trenton are just slightly behind Dave and tied for third place. And Rodger is still in it–though, just like in the Preliminary Week and Semi-Finals Week this year, he’s going to need to hit a couple of home runs in these last two at-bats to make it happen. (And in both the Preliminary and Semi-Finals Weeks, Rodger managed to do just that.)
Simply put, after twenty shows, including this sold-out show at the Kirkland Performance Center, the 34th Annual Seattle International Comedy Competition is still far too close to call!