Experimental, New Comedy
every Saturday at 6pm
Arcade Comedy Theater presents Beta Stage, a weekly platform showcasing new, experimental, and student-generated comedy. Each month, the Beta Stage schedule rotates through long-form improv, music, short-form improv, and scripted material. Shows are always an hour long and just $7.
Every Beta Stage is a chance to catch acts in various stages of development, and even get in on the action yourself. An average show could include an experimental performance by a veteran comedy troupe, the debut of a new student team, the world premiere of a sketch or short film, or a brief exercise or lesson about comedy.
The Arcade is all about experimentation, trying new things, and elevating the art of comedy. Beta Stage is a weekly new platform where you can see the comedy of tomorrow, today.
Tickets on Sale Now!
Shows every Saturday
Week 1: Long-Form Improv
Improvised scenes and one-act plays using different “forms” and techniques. Expect to see a mix of student teams, practice teams, indie groups, and Arcade house teams!
Week 2: Music
A mix of improvised Broadway-style musical numbers, local comedy bands trying out new material, and experimental musical productions.
Week 3: Short-Form Improv
Improv games (a la Whose Line Is It Anyway) with an emphasis on audience participation. Look for a mix of Arcade house teams, indie groups, and student improvisers playing and creating new games.
Week 4: Scripted
A mix of new sketch comedy, staged readings, monologues, and sketch comedy writing challenges. You’ll get to see local sketch troupes developing new material, Pittsburgh storytellers sharing tales, premieres of new comedy videos, and writers seeing their words performed for the first time!
Week 5: Wildcard*
In that rare fifth Saturday in a month, you’ll see an amalgam of comedy across all disciplines! It’s definitely something you won’t want to miss.
Want to Perform?
All shows will be booked in advance. To submit an act to be considered for inclusion in an upcoming Beta Stage, please fill out the form below. You may also submit an idea to workshop with the Beta Stage wranglers:
Beta Stage Producers & Staff
Beta Stage is put on each week with the enormous efforts of an amazing team. Beyond producers, they are creators and evangelists, putting together new projects for the series and encouraging and catalyzing others in the community to participate. Let’s get to know the Beta team!
Executive & Wildcard Producer–5th Week
Brian teaches Improv Pop-Up Night at Arcade, is the Community Programming Director of the Pittsburgh Comedy Festival, and performs regularly with Irony City, Iguanatron, The Death Show and The Writers’ Room. He has directed plays, musicals and improvised productions such as Play it by Ear: An Improvised One Act Play by Irony City, an improvised family friendly musical fairy tale developed with the Pittsburgh Children’s Museum, the ProJECT Improv Experience, and The End of the World Show at Arcade. Brian developed Beta Stage with Arcade to increase access stage time and encourage experimentation. Contact Brian
Improv Producer–1st Week
Ben began taking improv classes in May 2011 and hasn’t looked back since. He’s performed with groups such as AKA, The Up & Up, Field Trip, CSI: Crime Scene Improvisation, Ben & Jerome, and can currently be seen performing with Well Known Strangers, Change Machine, The Writers’ Room and Irony City. Ben is a St. Louis native, engineer, and doesn’t get your theater references. Contact Ben
Olivia Grace Traini
Music Producer–2nd Week
Olivia Grace Traini is a native of New Kensington, PA. She graduated from Chatham University with a degree in Arts Management, concentrated in Visual Arts, and Minored in Music. Currently, Olivia takes the stage as captain of Arcade Comedy Theater’s House Team “The High Scores”. At the same time, she shakes her groove thing as a stand-up, and produces Musical Beta Stage! Contact Olivia
Scripted Co-Producer–4th Week
Nicole is a sketch writer, improviser, and born and raised Pittsburgher. Nicole has produced, directed, acted in and written for many sketch shows produced at Arcade Comedy Theater including 66Canada, Boys with Hats, and Persons of Disinterest. She also performs regularly at Arcade’s Bonus Stage with her house team Mini Dungeon. She wants to make all of your wildest scripted comedy dreams come true. Contact Nicole
Scripted Co-Producer–4th Week
Jason Newsom is a Louisville native. As a graduate from The Second City Conservatory in Chicago, he has made it his life’s passion to make people laugh and be an advocate for artists of all disciplines. He recently relocated here to Pittsburgh and is so happy to have discovered that this city has a booming comedy community. He is so happy to have found a home with Arcade. He is excited to be joining the producing team for Beta Stage. You can catch him performing with Dog Show and also Arcade Comedy Theater’s only musical-improv max team, The High Scores. Contact Jason
We’d also like to thank past producers:
- Dave Hart, Jr.
- Nick Stamatakis
- Robin Hitchcock
Beta Stage is truly a team effort and would not be possible without the help of so many people! We’d like to thank a few of them here:
- Kristy Nolen
- Mike Rubino
- Rose Sarantinoudis
- Amanda Averell
- Mindy Cooper
- Tom Musial
- Our amazing acts
- Our supportive audiences
Do you have questions about Beta Stage? Below are a set of questions we get asked frequently. If you can’t find an answer below, please contact us.