If you're looking for a good laugh on Mother's Day, you may want to head to the Crescent Ballroom around 8 p.m.
An improvisational comedy show called The Switch will be making its Phoenix debut, and its not the kind of thing you'll want to miss. A few years ago, a couple of comedians started the show in Tucson, and it's now been passed down to one of the state's funniest comedians, Pauly Casillas.
"We've been going on three years with years with this show. It was started by comedians Graham Van Bach and Jericho Davidson and was handed down to Jacob Breckenridge and I when they moved to New York. Now, my co-host Henry Barajas and I have kept it going and growing," Casillas says. "It is Tucson's longest-running comedy show, and it's not showing any signs of slowing down. Hotel Congress picked up as a monthly show last year, and we're booked until 2016. So, I guess they like it."
The show has helped the Tucson comedy scene grow over the last few years, and it's an improv show with a bit of a twist.
"Henry and I write joke topics on a screen behind the comedians, and they have to riff on them right there on the spot," Casillas says. "The joke topics we get are texted in by audience members and other comedians directly to us, so it's live and interactive."
Ultimately, The Switch promises to be a night of comedy unlike anything the Valley has seen before, and it's a huge departure from regular comedy shows.
"With a regular comedy show, you have comedians doing their tried and true material. Jokes they know will get a laugh. Jokes they've done dozens of times before. Those comedians always have a joke to fall back on if one doesn't do well," Casillas says.
It's not the improv shows you'll see put on by college students in coffee shops, it puts actual local comedians who are used to doing their normal sets on the spot right then and there.
"With The Switch, we take that all away from the comedian. There's no net to fall on if you fail. It's like opening the back of a clock and seeing all the gears work. The audience gets to see behind the wall and watch the joke-making process right there on stage. They get a personal show that they get to tailor," he adds.
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"Every show we do is different," Casillas says. "Same format, but the material and topics are an original. They get to see the comedians thrive under the pressure, or not. That's the fun of the show."
Sunday night's show is free and open to anyone 21 and up, and the phone number to text in topics is 520-477-2221. If you're a fan of comedy (and free events), it's likely something worth checking out.
More info is available on Crescent Ballroom's website.