Contact CU Independent News Staff Sonia Fraser at Sonia.Fraser@colorado.edu.
“Okay comedy at a not okay time” is the club motto for Secret Recipe, a sketch comedy group at the University of Colorado that deals in free entertainment for all. With a cast of about eight regular members, the group encourages its team to write, block and direct all of their own work.
Gracing the stage since 2012, this group is used to operating on a short time frame. They perform one improvisational show a week, and one more complete sketch every third week. The pressure is on to produce quick and comedic shows that require few rehearsals.
“Everyone in the group writes their own sketches, then we perform them that week,” new member Connor Hoehn said. “We come and we rehearse them probably two to three times maybe, and then we just go on.”
While full-length sketches do demand a greater level of commitment from the cast, they do not require as much preparation as one might expect. According to Hoehn, the cast typically meets on the days leading up to their Thursday performance. A typical sketch show week involves a read-through on Monday, blocking on Tuesday, refinement on Wednesday and shows on Thursday. Hoehn does not attribute the quality of work to the time put in, but rather to the quality and talent of the actors and writers.
The group made its start in 2012 as an offshoot of the original CU sketch comedy troupe, Side Effects. After losing a number of senior members, Side Effects disbanded, leaving Niki Dreistadt, Grahm Emmons, Blair Brit, Josh Scott, Alison Banowsky and Brendan Milove to form a new group under the name Secret Recipe.
“In those early years the group performed weekly,” said Eddy Jordan, former member of Secret Recipe, “but we soon found ourselves seeing what a masochistic lifestyle that leads to in terms of time commitment, so we’ve changed to bi-weekly shows, which is how the group runs today.”
The club currently performs original comedy improv every Thursday at 10:45 pm in the UMC, room 386. Every third Thursday is reserved for a full-length comedy sketch.
For any prospective audience members, Secret Recipe has a Facebook page where they post all of their show dates and times. The link can be found here.