The Countdown Improv Festival is returning to the HCC Studio Theatre in the Ybor City neighborhood of Tampa, Florida, for its third year from August 15-17, 2019. Our 2018 festival welcomed nearly 40 improv trios, duos, and solo performers from across the country. Our third year promises to be our biggest and best yet, and we couldn’t be more excited.
The submission window was open from February 15 through May 15, and is now closed. If for some reason you’re still interested in reading the submission guidelines, though, have at! We will announce our selections by early June.
As the only national festival dedicated exclusively to small-group improv comedy, the Countdown Improv Festival accepts groups in configurations of one, two, and three performers only. If your group contains more people than that, we can recommend some other top-notch festivals to which you should apply. All submissions (including videos) should reflect the group’s lineup as it would appear at the festival if accepted.
Regular vs. Late Submission Window
We encourage you to submit by April 30 to save a few bucks! However, please know that submissions will be not be judged until the end of the submission period. (In other words, early submissions are not privileged over later ones in the evaluation process.) Early acceptances will not be provided.
The submission fees ($25 from Feb. 15 – Feb. 28, $30 from Mar. 1 – Apr. 30, $35 from May 1 – 15) are on par with other festival fees across the country. The fees go to offset festival production costs.
Sorry, No Refunds
We will not refund your submission fee if you are not accepted to the festival. We honestly can’t believe that we have to clarify this, but previous experience has taught us that we do. So be forewarned!
It is very, very important to include a representative performance video with your submission. A video, more than anything else, gives the selection committee the best sense for not only the caliber and quality of your show, but how to program your troupe/solo act within a lineup if you are accepted. Please know that your submission will be at a disadvantage if it does not include a video.
Tips on Preparing Your Video
- Above all else, if you’re choosing from several videos, pick the one that you like the most, that you think best represents your troupe and the sort of show you would be excited to perform at the festival.
- Test your video quality, camera angles, and sound quality beforehand. We’ve gotten more than a few videos that we can barely hear!
- Make sure your entire cast is in the video you’re submitting. We want to see your show as it would appear on the HCC stage.
- We’re looking for full-length performance videos; no clips, highlight reels, or trailers, please. Film your entire show, from intro to blackout.
Thank you for submitting your troupe to this year’s festival! If you have any questions that weren’t covered here, please email us at countdownimprovfestival at gmail dot com.