For every television show that makes it to air, there are scores of pilot episodes created and produced that never see the light of day—often shows that are much funnier, more daring, and original than the seemingly endless succession of legal dramas and fat-guy-marries-thin-middle-aged-actress sitcoms marring the airwaves. The Minneapolis-based crew of Royal Mutt productions, led by director Matt Olson, shot a dozen sample scenes of a program for a producer in L.A. to shop around, but the project never quite gained traction. For one night only, Olson and company will screen the heretofore unseen Shady Acres, which he describes as a comedy about roommates in a mental hospital who "live to create their own conflicts in a world in which none exist—sometimes they stop taking their meds to get high ('What are you not on?') and embark on surreal adventures that span into alternate realities and musical asides." In other words, it's something infinitely more interesting than every episode of Two and a Half Men combined. The 12 sketches will be interspersed with live standup from Shady Acres co-star Eric Nigg as well as top Minneapolis comics Tim Harmston and Isaac Witty. Harmston was Acme's 2003 Funniest Person in the Twin Cities and has appeared on Last Comic Standing and Comedy Central's Live at Gotham, and Witty has been featured on Late Night with David Letterman, A Prairie Home Companion, and at the Montreal Comedy Festival.
Thu., Dec. 30, 7 & 10 p.m., 2010