Getting laughs in the Bay Area is ‘rough’ business

The Bay Area comedy theatre scene is about to get a little bit “Rougher.”

Roughhouse Comedy, a group from San Jose that has branched out from the venerable Comedysportz improvisation troupe, is now focusing on a similar genre.

As much as the group still enjoys the stuntman nature of improvisation, Roughhouse company co-founder Jimmy Snell loves the frantic nature that comes with sketch.

“I enjoy condensing comedy down to its purest form,” said Snell. “In sketch comedy, you don’t have time to dilly dally. You have about three minutes to create the setup, find the game in the scene and explore it.

“It’s fast, brutal, unapologetic.”

Roughhouse, which takes their name from a voice in the Pleasure Island scene of the Disney movie “Pinocchio,” just completed their first major production, and has received an opportunity for a repeat performance of the same show. With the conclusion of Halloween on Thursday night, the company will keep the ghouls and goblins going for one extra evening in the East Bay.

“The Spook Show,” performing at Made Up Theatre’s venue in Fremont, features the writing and performances of Jimmy Snell, Marisa Hankins, Kyle Ames, and Jon Snell; with additional written material provided by Julia Van Roo and Brandon Arnold.

Fellow co-founder Marisa Hankins feels the show merges two of the troupe’s favorite things – Halloween and sketch comedy.

“The most enjoyable thing about this particular show is the content,” said Hankins. “We love all things spooky!”


Roughhouse Sketch Comedy presents “The Spook Show.”
Friday, November 1st
Made Up Theatre, 3392 Seldon Ct., Fremont, CA 94539.
9:00 PM. $12 online, $15 at the door.
For more information, call (408) 386-5640 or visit

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