Mission IMPROVable
Gig Seeker Pro

Mission IMPROVable

Chicago, Illinois, United States

Chicago, Illinois, United States
Band Comedy

Calendar

This band hasn't logged any future gigs

This band hasn't logged any past gigs

Music

The best kept secret in music

Press


After a dozen years lighting up students' faces around the country, Mission IMPROVable has become the first ever non-solo act to win the coveted Entertainer of the Year category in Campus Activities Magazine's Reader's Choice Awards, and only the first ever act in the genre of comedy to win it!
It was a hard fought battle, with front runners Michael Kent and Daniel Martin making it a close race up to the finish. However the determination, quality and sheer amount of MI's campus shows won the day.
Aaron Krebs is a founder of the Mission IMPROVable National Touring Company Ensemble, and sits down for an interview with CAM to tell us a little bit about the formation of the company, and what makes it not only the number one improv show in the campus market but also the Entertainer of the Year.
"Mission IMPROVable has been touring in the campus market since 2000," Aaron says. "We started out of the University of Massachusetts, Amherst in 1996. That is where the group formed, but then we moved things to Chicago, the true Mecca of improv."
The group would soon cement itself not only as a presence in the campus market, but among the big league improv companies in the Windy City as well. MI would later divide, with part of the group moving west to open a theater in Santa Monica, but with the touring troupe based in the Midwest. "The theater in Santa Monica has shows 7 days a week, over 100 shows a month. We also still perform in the Chicago area from time to time. The guys are performing in the Chicago Improv Festival in early April, but other than that mostly what happens out of the Midwest comes from the touring company, who perform about 140 shows a year in the campus market."

The group has been with Bass/Schuler Entertainment since they entered the market, and about the time BSE was starting up themselves. The two have grown together, into one of the most prominent agencies in the market and now the top act in the market respectively, according to our readers. "The original six of us left school and moved to Chicago and studied for a while to earn our chops. We started putting together this show and got teamed up early on with Bass/Schuler. After a few years of brutal touring, the original members were looking to move west and rather than close up shop in Chicago and kill the touring troupe, we decided we could create an opportunity for other young folks coming out of college to learn comedy and get paid for it. We continued to facilitate the touring arm and it has been a great boon for the entire company, giving the founding members a way to expand the brand."
Clearly MI is a great place to work. We'll hear a bit from the players themselves soon, but even before you hear for yourself how much they love their jobs, one has to appreciate how well they are taken care of by their bosses from the original six. "We provide a full health plan, a daily stipend and a great paycheck as well. Idealistically for us, it was something that we had the opportunity to provide and something we wanted to provide for that community."

For the performers part, you'd think you were talking to a group of guys who just hit the Powerball. Perhaps road weary at times yes, but ecstatic they get paid to essentially be the class clowns at over 100 schools a year. Byron Kennerly aka Agent Battlestar, David Sill aka Agent Raptor, Matt Garard aka Agent Sugarbear, and Sherman Edwards aka Agent Pepperjack make up the troupe. Surprisingly, the "agents" monikers are not forced on them by their bosses as a means of hazing. "Actually, we choose them ourselves..."Sherman says. Dave adds "Once you get cast, you choose your official agent name, and each one has some kind of special meaning to us, whether it is the story of how we got it or something fun that represents a part of us."

Life on the road is all these guys know. "We usually perform between 15 and 18 dates a month during the school year" Byron says. "It averages to probably 60 to 70 shows per semester."
While there are a ton of improv troupes out there, not many of them have really focused on the campus market, or figured out exactly how to approach it. It is reasonable to assume that most students have never seen a live improv show. MI has not only made the campus market the center of their focus, but they have mastered the art of capturing student interest and making themselves a hit on campus. "The nature of our show is so interactive that we win over the students pretty quickly" Matt says. "It is all based on audience suggestion and the format of the show is cool because we can base it on any crowd. It's not hard to win them over because the show is really about them."
Obviously with a show taking so much from the audience, things can take unexpected turns quickly, exactly why the crowd control abilities of such seasoned perfo - Campus Activities Magazine


Discography

Still working on that hot first release.

Photos

Bio

Campus Activities Magazine Readers Choice Awards
2013 Entertainers of the Year & 2011 Winner Best Comedy Performer

2012 INNY Awards Winner Best in Short Form

Top Ten Best Acts to Work With voted by Student Activities Advisors

The agents of MISSION IMPROVable Comedy Team are just a few audience suggestions away from creating a brand new and original production thats all about whatever you tell them! This fast-paced and exciting new form of comedy is a combination of MTVs Wild N Out and Whos Line is it Anyway? but there is a bit of a twist. Just like in the old TV series Mission Impossible, the Chicagoan actors in Mission IMPROVable pretend to be agents. The audience members are the co-agents and participate in the hilarious theater games or missions by yelling out suggestions. The on-the-spot randomness provided by the audience makes each mission truly unique and very often hysterical. This new improvisational comedy troupe, Mission IMPROVable, is infectious and hot. MI is a regular at festivals and colleges across the country with a show that will leave you with a smile on your face and your stomach aching from laughter.

So, you want to try being an agent, huh? Youre not alone. Often people get so involved with the show that they want to try improv themselves. For that reason, MISSION IMPROVable Comedy Team has created IMPROV BOOTCAMP, a series of on-site improvisational comedy workshops. We offer several classes that cater to all comedic levels from the first time stage freshman to the seasoned senior comic! We make sure that everyone has fun!!!

REVIEWS:

"In 2006, Mission Improvable took on Lollapalooza's Mindfield. They carried the day with a constant stream of hyjinx. Watching them get into it with the audience was comedic surgery; purely side-splitting... It was our best Mindfield ever!" - Perry Farrell, Lollapalooza

It seemed like the crowd really enjoyed the show, and I know the students in the Odd Request improv group were really happy that they got to open for you guys and meet you all before the show. You all were great to work with, which made the show an even better experience. - Jared R. Eakins, University of Illinois

Mission IMPROVable was fantastic! They are a great, fun, courteous group of men. Everyone loved the show! - Diane Coon, Lasell College

The MI guys were great and the students loved them!!! - Holly Nonnemacher M.Ed., Moravian College

We loved Mission Improvable! I had high hopes for the act but these guys exceeded all of them. I think the school will definitely be asking for their services again in the future.- Taylor Donze, Spring Hill College