This is probably the first year where I don’t feel like the festival is over for me personally. It hasn’t sunk in yet and so therefore, in my brain, it doesn’t feel really over. DIF 5 is the final DIF where I’m the festival board chair. (I’m not going anywhere, and nothing is wrong, so please don’t worry.) I’m excited to pass on the torch and begin to further cultivate new board members. “Change is good” and the idea behind that phrase directly applies to this year’s festival.
We changed because we shaved off two months of planning to move the festival from November 2017 to September 2017, which means we had to do more, faster. We did this in order to continue to produce shows at the Source Theater and not because we’re gluttons for punishment. We added more shows at The Unified Scene Theater and further continued a strong partnership; again, really positive change. We added four new dynamite board members. We had a total of four completely FREE shows across two theaters and thanks to the DC Commission on the Arts and Humanities we kept our non-headliner ticket prices between $5 and $12. This is all really positive change, but none of this compares to the people whom support us.
We are truly fortunate to be able to work with so many talent and amazing people. These people allow us to accomplish the festival every year and without them we simply wouldn’t be able to function. These people continue to support us year after year. We’re grateful for:
- Thanks to Matthew Taylor Strote, Lauren Emily Cross, Lori Verchot Carpenter, Gus Voorhees, PJ Tabit, Analía Gómez Vidal, John Schmitz,Ryan Holloway, James Ambach, Carolyn Karbel, Ben Nemceff, Rhonda Mendoza, Sabahat Chaudhary, Anne DeMarsay, Susan Jacob, Allison Shaw, Krystal Ramseur, Rich Casey, Justin Carty, Seth Payne, Felicia Barnes, Elizabeth Fulton, Dano Neil, Ben O’Hara, Matt Mansfield, Sarah Evans, Luca Maggs, Ryan McClure, Ginnie Seger, Caroline Michael Osborne, Tony Lazzeroni, Lauren LaVare, Nick Martinez, Marie Elizabeth,Nina Hsu, Cindy Creelman, Goli Samimi, Raymond Simeon, Elijah Sloan,Kris Shenenberger, Seth Arenstein, Katie Honerkamp Lazo, and Melanie Harker for your talents, time, and support.
- The Saloon on U Street for being a great place to host wonderful people after a show.
- Port City Brewing Company for the performer beer. Cheers!
- Mark Chalfant and Washington Improv Theater for their amazing support each year.
- Shawn and Kathy Westfall of The Unified Scene Theater for being wonderful partners in crime for a second year. Please go read their interview because it’s great.
- New friends,
- Returning friends,
- Amazing new board members – Alex Beard, Caroline Chen, Jess Less, Heather Marie Vitale.
- 3Peat for bring the house down on Saturday night. This was a once in a lifetime show, and I hope you didn’t miss it.
- Our audiences.
If you want to continue the excitement from above, throughout the year, then check out our regular monthly programming! (Yes, we do stuff outside the festival too!)
Bagelz and Jam – and improv jam for women! Check out their Facebook page by clicking here.
Improv Sandbox – an open-to-all monthly jam in DC! Check out their Facebook page by clicking here.
See you next year (and throughout the year)? Yes, definitely. We’ll see you in 2018 for DIF 6.
Our deepest gratitude, thanks, and love,
Sean Paul Ellis, festival producer
On behalf of the DIFest board: Alex Beard, Sabahat Chaudhary, Caroline Chen, Jeff Hughes, Jess Lee, Dan Miller, Rob Miller, Jordana Mishory, Jonathan Murphy, and Heather Marie Vitale.