Team 2 takes on Operation Rookie Card tonight


Some time back, we held a blind round for Troika… basically just drew names and then folks came down from the audience and did a set on the spot. It seems as though one of the trios drawn together that night had a lot of fun with it and decided to carry on with the match up. Ladies & gents…  luck of the draw brought BJ ELLIS, JESSICA SNOW and BERT ARCHER together. But playfully fun improv has kept them that way.

Now known as TEAM 2, the trio is set to debut tonight as part of the ROOKIE CARD show at the Raven Lounge. Be sure to head on down and show your support for this brand new team!


Comedian Profile: Alan Williams


Editors Note: In this segment, we step away from the stage and take a look at comedians in the Philadelphia area… Learn a little more about where they come from, what they do while not performing and of course the question we all ask ourselves… Why do we do it?


Might have seen him in: The N Crowd, Ladies & Gentlemen, Meadowbrook Public Library Storybook Players (2nd place overall for 2010 Troika)

Hangs his hat in: Old City

Stomping Grounds: Ithaca, NY

Pays the Bills: Biopharmaceutical Marketing

Other Hobbies: reading, writing, ‘rithmetic… and karaoke

Why Improv?

Improv is my sanity saver. When the drudgery of my day-to-day life starts to bring me down, improv lifts me up again.

If you know someone who you think should be profiled, we’d love to hear about them.

Comedian Profile: Ralph Andracchio


Editors Note: In this segment, we step away from the stage and take a look at comedians in the Philadelphia area… Learn a little more about where they come from, what they do while not performing and of course the question we all ask ourselves… Why do we do it?


Might have seen him in: King Friday, WALT!, Pasiones de Pasiones (2010 Troika Champion)

Hangs his hat in: South Philly

Stomping Grounds: Philadelphia, PA

Pays the Bills as: Tech Support / Customer Service for an international non-profit

Other Hobbies: Painting, graphic design, video games

Why Improv?

I used to be the biggest spaz in Spazville.  All through grade school and high school, I was so painfully uncool.  I had a face full of acne, gangly limbs, and absolutely no social grace.  The only thing I really knew how to do was make people laugh.  I also enjoyed performing, but had the worst stage fright ever.  Any time I had to talk in front of people, I would turn into a jabbering mess.  So, after finally growing into a semi-well adjusted adult, I thought I’d challenge myself and bought a Level 1 class spot as a birthday present a few years back.

Improv has really helped me overcome a lot of the hang-ups I had speaking to people, especially if I have to get up in front of them.  It’s also sharpened my mind and given me a new level of confidence I never knew I could have.  And now that I’m a part of it, I find that the community is so diverse and filled with people from every point on the human spectrum.  We all got into improv for our own different reasons, but in the end, we all work towards the same goals.  I get more excited every day to learn more and put what I’ve learned into action onstage.  I can honestly say that becoming an improviser was one of the best things to ever happen to me, and I’m happier than I’ve ever been because of it.

If you know someone who you think should be profiled, we’d love to hear about them.

Sat: Troika Goes Nationwide


For the last three years, TROIKA has been matching up local improvisers into trios. I created the show as a way for people to experiment with new forms and collaborate outside of their normal circles without having to invest in an entirely new project. It’s also proved to be a great way to expose fan bases to different performers.

Troika’s spawned some pretty unique and fun premise-based and concept shows… we’ve seen musicals, rock band reunions, teen sleepovers and spanish language soap operas, as well as a colorful cast of characters including clowns, librarians, puppets and even states witnesses. We’ve seen groups from Troika live on to perform well beyond their season. Early teams PONYCOAT and BRENDA were the first break outs, followed by several concerts from VELVET HELMET, leading clear up to the current CAGEMATCH champs, THE ONES YOUR MOMS WARNED YOU ABOUT.

Last month, Troika expanded beyond its normal season by shedding its competition brackets for a special “blind” edition. Tomorrow night,  the show looks to raise the bar, as it takes its first steps towards national collaboration. Improvisers from New York, Boston, DC and as far away as Los Angeles will take the stage with some of Philly’s best. They’ll form three trios never before seen on stage, and not likely to be seen again:

Hannah Foell (Cambridge, MA)
Nathan Edmondson (Philadelphia, PA)
Topher Bellavia (Washington, DC)

Alli Soowal (Philadelphia, PA)
Luis Cortes (Los Angeles, CA)
Steve Kleinedler (Boston, MA)

Jason Stockdale (Philadelphia, PA)
Michael McFarland (New York City, NY)
Peter Fenzel (Boston, MA)

That’s some serious comedic talent, and all I can say is, you’d best expect the unexpected. So I hope you’ll join us for a special evening that is certainly never to be duplicated.


Tonight: Troika Grand Finale


It’s been a hard-fought season with some incredibly tight competition, but tonight the stakes have never been higher. 27 improvisers have stepped up on stage to put it all on the line, and now the winners from each round vie for the crown. It’s Librarians vs State Witnesses vs Spanish Soap Stars – and only one trio will be called TROIKA.

R1 Winner: Meadowbrook Public Library Storybook Players
(Alan Williams, Amie Roe, Thomas Whitaker)

R2 Winner: Confidential
(N1ck G1lle77e, D@n R1ch, J@k3 B3ck3rm@n)

R3 Winner: Pasiónes de Pasiónes
(Mike Marbach, Ralph Andracchio, Andy Moskowitz )

THU, MAY 6TH @ 9:30PM
$10 | BYOB

Advanced tickets available through the PHIT website.

Troikapalooza: Round 3 plus The Ones


Tonight’s Round 3 show will decide the last slot in the Troika Finale. Having already staked their claim are the Meadowbrook Public Library Storybook Players and Confidential. One last team will win tonight and earn a shot at being named 2010 champs. Your groups include:

DECONSTRUCTING STEVE feat. Jessica Snow, Jason Grimley & Rich Keller
THE SELF-LOVE VIDEO PODCAST feat. Gillienne Nadeau, Claire Halberstadt & Jake Alvarez
PASIONES DE PASIONES feat. Andy Moskowitz, Ralph Andracchio & Mike Marbach

The show begins at 9:30PM, and after the performances, the audience decides the winner via ballot.

Then you’ll want to stick around for a special treat. 2008 Troika faves and current Cagematch champs J, B-Libs and the Richness aka THE ONES YOUR MOMS WARNED YOU ABOUT will be doing a special FREE show at 11PM.

It’s a night of Troika past & present, and you decide the future!


THE ONES… – 11:00PM (FREE)

PHIT at the Shubin with April-May shows


Tonight the PHILLY IMPROV THEATER launches another two week run at the Shubin, and they’ve got some fun stuff in store for you…

Wed, 4/28
8:00PM – The Bully Pulpit w. Luke Giordano – $5

Thu, 4/29
8:00PM – Improv Comedy, PhD – $10
9:30PM – Troika: Round 3 – $10
11:00PM – The Ones Your Moms Warned You About – FREE

Fri, 4/30
8:00PM – Dependable Felons + Everything Must Go – $10
9:30PM – The Megaphone Comedy Tour + King Friday – $10

Sat, 5/1
8:00PM – Sketch comedy from Meg & Rob feat. Brendan Kennedy – $10
9:30PM – Activity Book + Leo Callahan – $10
11:00PM – Sketch Up or Shut Up -FREE

Sun, 5/2
8:00PM – Sketch comedy from Meg & Rob feat. Carolyn Busa – $10

Mon, 5/3
8:00PM – The Moops – $5

Wed, 5/5
8:00PM – Guilty Pleasures w/ Brendan Kennedy – $5

Thu, 5/6
8:00PM – Hey Everybody w/ Aaron Hertzog – $5
9:30PM – Troika: Championship – $10

Fri, 5/7
8:00PM – Rare Buck Show w/ Dave Buckman + Vorlof – $10
9:30PM – Fletcher + Angry People Building Things – $10

Sat, 5/8
8:00PM – Sketch comedy from Meg & Rob – $10
9:30PM – CUBED + Red Letters – $10
11:00PM – Improv Jam: Flying Leap – FREE

Additional information and advanced tickets available on the PHIT website.