8/12/2013 5:20:00 PM Comedy for a Cause Zenprov performs benefit show for HERO
Zenprov Comedy kicks off their fall season with a special benefit show for HERO (Humanitarian Efforts Reaching Out), a Sedona-based charity. Titled "A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To Nicaragua," this one-night-only completely improvised performance will take place at 7 p.m. on Friday, Aug. 23 at the Sedona Creative Life Center.
"Zenprov is the best comedy troupe in Arizona," said Patrick Schweiss, Executive Director of the Sedona International Film Festival. "At their last show, people were laughing so hard their cheeks were hurting."
Similar to the improvised TV show "Whose Line Is It Anyway?", Zenprov Comedy performs fast-paced, spontaneous comedic scenes created in the moment-always based on audience suggestions and often their hands participation. Unlike sketch or standup comedy, nothing is scripted or rehearsed ahead of time. It's completely spontaneous and never the same show twice.
Laughter aside, Zenprov Comedy and HERO are partnering up for a serious cause: raising money for humanitarian relief efforts at remote villages in Nicaragua where aid is seldom, if ever, available.
Founded by local physician Dr. Julia Williams in 2010, HERO has sent diverse teams to remote areas of India, Honduras and Nicaragua to dispense medical and dental care, eyewear, nutritional support, veterinary services and solar cookers. Just as importantly, the group provides technical expertise and education to help villagers develop safe and sustainable energy sources or other vital infrastructure.
"All of our volunteers pay for their own travel expenses and donate their time to these projects," said Dr. Williams. "That means that 100 percent of the money we raise goes directly to dispensing much-needed medical, vision and dental supplies, clothing, solar cookers and other hard costs associated with our humanitarian projects."
Donna Gould, organizer for the event, said: "Our goal is to raise $120,000 by March 2014, so we're excited to have Zenprov Comedy helping us raise money and mirth to our mission. The show promises to be family friendly event with lots of participation from the audience."
Special guest singer Laura Lizak will warm up the audience her 10-minute mini-version of the "Wizard of Oz" where she plays all the characters from the movie and sings all the parts herself.
The Zenprov Comedy troupe includes locals Tony Carito, Derek Dujardin, Shaeri Richards, Chris Redish, Mike Burdick, Bonnie Green, Betty Testa, Linda Roemer and Mary Carder.
Tickets are $15 advance or $20 the day of the show. Tickets can be purchased in person at Creative Life Center or Crystal Magic in Sedona, The Worm in VOC, Jerona Java Café in Cottonwood, or online at www.heroefforts.com via PayPal or credit card. You must print and present your receipt at the door for proof of purchase.
The Sedona Creative Life Center is located 333 Schnebly Hill Road. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. and the show starts at 7 p.m., and will run approximately 90 minutes.