The Bankhead Theater will welcome the 43rd Annual San Francisco Comedy Competition’s ten semifinal contestants this coming Friday, September 21. This unique event is sure to provide an entertaining night of laughter and a great opportunity for audiences to discover new talent, as well as support rising stars in the comedy world.
Let’s take a closer look at the history of the competition.
For more than four decades, this event has served as a stepping stone for numerous comic legends. Believe it or not, Dana Carvey won the competition back in 1977 before going on to appear on “Saturday Night Live.” The list of famous runner-ups is lengthy as well, including the likes of Robin Williams, who placed second in the competition’s inaugural year, and Ellen DeGeneres, who also just missed first place ten years later.
Stand-up has long been considered one of the more difficult forms of comedy. That said, the San Francisco Comedy Competition’s format is particularly challenging. First, approximately 30 comedians are chosen from hundreds of applicants to compete in preliminary weeks before a range of audiences at comedy clubs, bars, restaurants, casinos, and theaters across the greater Bay Area.
From there, things get really interesting. Only ten comedians process to the semifinals for five more shows before the top five advance to the finals. As they have been for the last three years, the sets at the Bankhead will be part of the semifinal rounds.
This year, the final show will be held where the competition started in downtown San Francisco. The SF Comedy Competition at the Bankhead precedes a number of others shows this season, including the return of Tom Papa on October 25.
Tickets to the SF Comedy Competition start at just $30. Keep in mind that the Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center offers student and military tickets to nearly every performance. If you need student, military, or ADA tickets, please contact the box office prior to the event.
As a friendly reminder, please note the following policies at the Bankhead Theater:
- Regardless of age, everyone (including children) must have their own ticket to enter the theater.
- ADA seats or spaces are for wheelchairs only (no exceptions).
- Our military discount is offered only to active military personnel.
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It could be that you’ve never been to a comedy show but have always had interest. Or maybe you have yet to check out the Bankhead Theater for yourself. In any case, we invite you to consider purchasing tickets for this special event.
The Bankhead Theater is more than just another performing arts venue. This 507-seat facility is used for live music, theater, dance, lectures, conferences, and civic events. Our performing arts center staff works tirelessly to bring in a wide range of artists and, in this case, comedians throughout the year.
LVPAC is an independent 501(c)3 non-profit offering wide-ranging programs that provide access to the arts for the Tri-Valley community and beyond. Along with the Bothwell Arts Center, the Bankhead is home to eight residents performing arts companies and over 40 studio artists and cultural arts instructors.