Austin may be known as the Live Music Capitol of the World. But Out of Bounds Comedy Festival is helping it become the Comedy Capitol of the World.
Austin’s Biggest Comedy Fest
If you think Moontower and SXSW Comedy are the only big comedy events in Austin, think again. Out of Bounds Comedy Festival runs twice as long, involves the trifecta of comedy, and isn’t concentrated downtown.
The festival, now in its 13th year, begins on August 26, 2014 and wraps up on Labor Day. Originally an improv festival, Out of Bounds has grown to incorporate stand-up and sketch comedy acts. Since its founding in 2002 by Jeremy Lamb, the festival has grown to almost 200 acts and 9 venues stretching the length of the city.
Much like Moontower Comedy and Oddity Festival, Out of Bounds blends local and national comedic talent. Local stand-up acts like Brendon K. O’ Grady and Duncan Carson, hosts of Austin Java’s Sure Thing share stages with out of towners like Kazumi Kusano, an award winning Japanese comedian based out of Los Angeles, and Mad TV alumni Mo Collins.
The Comedy Trifecta
Unlike Moontower, Out of Bounds Comedy Festival features improv and sketch comedy alongside our beloved stand-up comedians. The writers of Comedy Central’s Key and Peele are among the blended line up of featured acts. Key and Peele is a highly rated sketch comedy show staring two Mad TV veterans, Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele.
The improv scene will appear in force with over 100 improv groups exercising a blend of long and short form improv across the city. You know, there was a time when I wasn’t the biggest proponent of improv comedy. I didn’t get it and felt it was lackluster as a whole. But then I went to see a group (now defunct) named iScream Sandwich headline at The Institution Theater. The entire show was very good and my attitude towards improv changed. I now look forward to seeing what these improv acts have to offer audiences at Out of Bounds this year.
With close to 200 acts in total, the 7-day festival may make your head explode. Don’t worry, I have a few suggestions that may keep your noggin intact.
My Festival Picks
Daniel Webb is an up and coming comedian who has recently gained notoriety on the web, due to a response he gave President Obama regarding his sexuality. I had the opportunity to see him perform at the New Movement Theater and he was wildly entertaining. August 29th and August 31st
Maggie Maye is one of my favorite female comics. She draws her inspiration from the likes of Jerry Seinfeld and Joan Rivers. August 29-31st
Cody Hustak is one of the few comics who can pull off adult jokes innocently. He mixes that skill with a unique take on non sequitur one-liners that won him the Funniest Person in Austin crown for 2014. August 29-31st
Audience of Two is two buddies writing skits about two buddies who sometimes annoy each other. We all have someone like this in our life. Take a minute to consider the humorous possibilities. August 29th
Stag Comedy is a well known local group boasting a long and storied history. Former Funniest Person in Austin winner, Mac Blake has been a long time member of the group. August 29th
Ball and Chain is a married couple performing improv as a married couple, except he’s a man from the 1920s and she’s a modern woman. I cannot wait to see what shenanigans they pull out of their proverbial hat. August 27th
Bad Font is a group of performers specializing in a variety of improv styles. They were one of the groups I saw in the improv show that changed my mind about improv. I can’t recommend Bad Font enough to you, my dear readers. August 26th
Get Those Tickets
There are enough acts and venues to fill two articles. Alas, I am limited to one. If you want to get your feet wet in the comedy scene in Austin, Out of Bounds Comedy Festival is the perfect way to jump in. With the sheer number of options available, including sketch, improv, and even a podcast or two, you’d be hard pressed to not find something to tickle your fancy.
Tickets are available on the Out of Bounds Comedy Festival website.
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