Katie Pengra has been a staple in the Austin comedy scene for some time now and for the past year, she’s been hosting Buzzkill Comedy at the Buzz Mill.
A Year Old and Going Strong
I’m always curious about how a show gets its start. Katie Pengra happily shared the story of Buzzkill’s beginning with me, “I opened for a band at Antone’s a while ago, and one of the band members was the booker for the Buzz Mill at the time. they wanted comedy, and he liked my set so he asked me if I wanted to start a show. I figured it would be short lived, outdoor shows are never very successful.”
It’s been a year and despite her initial reservations, Buzzkill Comedy is doing extremely well. Pengra told me that the show has become one of the biggest business nights of the week for the venue. On November 5th, Katie Pengra and Buzzkill Comedy celebrated their 1 year anniversary with an extended line up and a pies and cakes.
Buzzkill Comedy Show is a weekly show featuring a healthy cross-section of Austin’s stand-up scene. What makes this show unique is that Pengra has a added an element to nip hecklers in the bud. She invites them on stage. Well, not all of them, just a lucky person who wins a raffle.
Creatively Engaging the Audience
This is the most creative way I’ve heard to fight those pesky hecklers. Maybe it’s because I’ve been more aware of them, but it seems like hecklers in Austin are spreading like the media thinks the Ebola virus is. Katie Pengra has opined on this very topic in the Austin Chronicle after seeing this plague on comedy infect a Tig Notaro show in October.
Pengra explains the details, “I have also started adding an additional element. People would come up to me every week saying that they want to try comedy, and they think they’re funnier than the comics so I should put them on stage. I’ve started doing a raffle each week for a 3 minute spot. Each week strangers put their name in, and i draw one person to perform 3 minutes before the headliner. But the caveat is that we get to make fun of them.
So what do you need to know? Once again, Buzzkill Comedy is at the Buzz Mill every Wednesday at 9pm. This is an outdoor venue. So dress weather appropriate. Also it’s a free show, which means there really isn’t an excuse to not go and check it out.
Click the links to find out more about Buzzkill Comedy and the Buzzmill:
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