San Francisco Improv Festival 2018September 19-23, 2018
What venue(s) will be a part of the festival?
Our festival takes place at SF's hottest new venue, Pianofight at 144 Taylor Street (at Eddy) in SF's Mid-Market area.
There are two theaters, one holds 45+, the other is a 90-seat space. There is a bar/restaurant/cabaret lounge that will host a variety of acts and talks which finally gets us a great festival gathering area before, between & after shows.
The venue is all ages and is wheel chair accessible.
What lodging options are available?
Hotels in San Francisco are not cheap. That said, you should be able to book a hotel near the venue for about $250-$300 a night. There are cheaper options the further you get from downtown, but if you aren't up for one of the hotels, we recommend Homeaway.com as a cheaper option to hotels as well as rival AirBNB. There is also the Green Tortoise Hostel in North Beach and the AYH hostels both downtown and in Fort Mason on the bay.
What transportation options are available?
Our venue is walking distance from Powell Street BART (subway) station, and we are exploring renewing our partnership with Lyft - more on that as we have it. Getting from the airports (Oakland or SFO) to downtown SF is pretty simple if mildly time consuming on BART, or a cab ride is about $60. Watch out for surge pricing if you are an UBER rider - it has cost as much as $120 for the same ride.
What dining options are available?
Happily, our venue Pianofight has a full restaurant menu of mostly salads and burgers/simple but quite tasty bar food that's pretty reasonably priced. If you want to explore some other food in the area, Farmer Brown at Hotel Metropolis is about a block away and has an amazing New Orleans-inspired menu. And frankly, the entire city is full of amazing food, so dig into Yelp or the reviews in blogs like www.cyneats.com.
How much stage time will performers receive?
Performers invited to the festival get one 35 minute slot unless specifically invited to a special program, in which case those slots can vary from 20 to 45 minutes.
There will also be opportunities to perform at the closing night jam, with the possibility of other jams/co-performances with other teams as programming becomes defined.
What is the local improv scene like?
The improv scene in San Francisco is booming. When we took over the SFIF in 2009, there was one fully established improv school in the city and maybe a bit over a dozen independent groups regularly performing. Now there are 4 schools that are regularly booked out, performances most nights of the week ranging from student shows to jams, to community-specific jams (Lady Jam, LGBTQ), to professional full-price shows, to school-hosted showcases, independent productions, and the College Improv Tournament Golden Gate Regionals which the SFIF co-presents and sponsors. You'll mostly find long-form and genre/genre-musical formats, but there are a number of short form shows as well. And that's just a quick run-down of what you'll find in 2017!
The San Francisco Improv Festival celebrates the art of improvisational theater by presenting work by local and out-of-town performance ensembles, producing workshops and master classes from the most innovative minds in the artform, and educating the public about all aspects of improvised theatrical performance. The SFIF Board of Directors is committed to presenting a platform for diverse voices and points of view, in an environmentally sustainable way.