Marquette Wire

Broadminded hits 10th year

All female comedy group celebrates with six show tour

Photo by Photo courtesy of Kat Schleicher

Photo by Photo courtesy of Kat Schleicher

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The only place where you can find a woman break dancing and acting like the planet Jupiter, all while listening to the Beastie Boys, is during one of Broadminded Comedy’s “10 Year Tour” shows.

Broadminded Comedy, an all-female comedy group from Milwaukee, will be commemorate its last 10 years of comedy by performing its “10 Year Tour” in the coming months. The show features favorite past sketches they’ve performed throughout the last decade, voted on and selected by former audience members.

The show will be at The Alchemist Theatre on 2569 S. Kinnickinnic Ave. April 29-30. The show moves to ComedySportz’s Farina Arena on 420 S. 1st St. May 20-21. Finally, Tenth Street Theatre on 628 N. 10th St. will house the show June 17-18. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. on all nights, and tickets are $12 if purchased online in advance or $15 at the door.

The group formed in 2006 when seven women met at ComedySportz.

Stacy Babl, member of Broadminded and Marquette alumna, said she first joined the Rec League at ComedySportz in Milwaukee and then met the other women that would eventually be her fellow Broadminded Comedians.

“One of the ladies on my ComedySportz Rec League team decided to pull together a group of women to form an all-female group since there were only all-male groups in Milwaukee at the time,” Babl said.

However, three of the seven women had other commitments and withdrew after the first show finished, leaving the four current members.

Broadminded has performed 20 original shows in 10 years, mostly performed five to seven different nights at a time. They have performed every year in The Milwaukee Comedy Festival, in fundraising shows, at private parties, weddings, high schools, corporate conferences and team-building events.

“If there’s a theater in town that seats about 100 people, we’ve probably performed in it,” said Megan McGee, another member of Broadminded.

Babl said she thinks the group ended up with a great mix of comedy sketches.

“I am very excited to restore my role as a lactation consultant, to throw knives at Melissa in a Russian accent, for Mary Poppins to join my resume building workshop, to play a singing zombie, to read an unknown Dr. Seuss manuscript and to see how hung over Halloween Express is going to be this year,” Babl said.

Melissa Kingston, another member of Broadminded, added that they will share some of their insider info about the success of sketches, the backstage antics and history of some sketches’ inception. Kingston said she loves the rush she gets while performing.

“Comedy is my legal high,” Kingston said. “Some of these sketches feel like your favorite sweatshirt or pair of jeans that are just so comfortable, and you love wearing them, that you would wear them every day.”

The four women write, direct and perform the sketches as a group. However, they have occasional cameos from Milwaukee comedians or assistance from a husband or boyfriend.

“I feed off of laughter,” Babl said. “I think on some level, all performers are seeking approval of some sort and that rings true for me, but there is also my incredible need to just be many different versions of myself.”

Kingston said that she is inspired by the insanity of human relationships, which helps her come up with comedy routines.

“As a writer I like to look at the world and its inconsistencies and hypocrisy,” Kingston said.

McGee said that her favorite part of performing comedy is when she feels like she fully entertainins the audience.

“There are scenes where you’re not just acting silly, you’re acting your heart out,” McGee said. “The premise may be ridiculous, but you’re going all in.”

The four members of Broadminded have very different personalities, according to Babl, which adds to the dynamic of its performances.

Anne Graff LaDisa, the last member of Broadminded, compared watching the past sketches the group has done to looking at little time capsules.

“(The ’10 Year Tour’) will be like watching the best of SNL episodes on Netflix,” LaDisa said.

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