January 19, 2012
By Angela Watercutter
Scores of the most brilliant minds in comedy — some already famous, others rising stars — descend on San Francisco each year for SF Sketchfest, the city’s homage to all that’s great about live jokes.
This year’s Sketchfest is no different, with performances by David Cross, John Hodgman and the creators of Wet Hot American Summer, as well as special events dedicated to honoring comedy legends.
“It would be impossible to list what we’re most looking forward to this year,” said the festival’s co-founders David Owen, Janet Varney and Cole Stratton in an e-mail to Wired.com. “Because we hand-pick every show and love them all, but being able to pay tribute to comedy heroes like Eddie Izzard and the Upright Citizens Brigade is extremely exciting.”
In years past, Sketchfest brought in many now-familiar performers long before they became megawatt stars, making the annual event a playground for young comics looking to get noticed.
Knowing the Sketchfest archives were probably rife with great moments in comedy history, Wired.com asked the founders to reminisce about their favorite moments from previous performances. They came back with some pure-comedy-gold moments from the festival’s 10 previous years — Neil Patrick Harris playing with puppets, Jon Hamm and Zach Galifianakis closing down a club, and Michael Showalter rocking out his iPod DJ skills.
Check out their photos from previous years in the gallery HERE, then head to the SF Sketchfest site to find out what’s up for this year, like performances by the folks behind RiffTrax and the (eep!) Wet Hot American Summer live radio play. Sketchfest starts Thursday and runs through Feb. 4 at San Francisco venues.