SF Sketchfest 2020 Must-See Performances

Curious what a Weird Al cover band looks like? Want the chance to see Fred Armisen nerd out about music? What’s so funny about a live band playing the Boogie Nights soundtrack?

These acts and so many more are taking place at this year’s Sketchfest; running January 9 through 26 on venues throughout San Francisco. The festival features traveling and local comedians putting out some of their funniest and weirdest material.

Let’s go back to Fred Armisen for a moment. The man is a fascinating musical wonder. After his special Standup for Drummers he’s trying a similar situation, but this time bringing out some musical guests as part of the routine. For his three-night residency at The Chapel, “Comedy for Guitar Players But Everyone is Welcome,” Armisen will be chatting with guitarists Brad Paisley and Bill Frisell. The first two nights are sold out, with a limited number of tickets available at the door.

David Lynch fans unite. San Franciscan funny pants Margaret Cho will be participating in a couple of different notable nights; one being the aforementioned “Boogie Nights” live with the Red Room Orchestra on Friday January 17th at The Chapel. The following night Cho and the Red Room Orchestra crew are back with music from “Twin Peaks” and “Wild at Heart.”

So many incredible acts in all, but here are a few others of note!

* There’s a the musical, “Pun Off: A Musical Inside the High Stakes World of Pun Competitions” (and yes, pun competitions are a real deal thing, baby).

* Aimee Mann is coming to sing “Save Me” and the entire Magnolia soundtrack. Just kidding. She’s coming to the Brava Theater to talk about the art process with Ted Leo. It should be a fascinating and stimulating night with some humor in there, too, of course.

* The cast and creators of “Spongebob Squarepants” are comin’ to town.

* Macaulay Culkin

* Rachel Dratch

* A personal favorite, a tribute to the movie “Airplane!” I picked a bad day to quit sniffing glue, right? If you don’t know the reference, definitely re-watch Airplane! and keep in mind, those always classic jokes are 40 years old.


You can check out the amazing, comprehensive list of acts on the Sketchfest website.

Written by Michelle Kicherer

Michelle Kicherer is a fiction writer and music journalist living in Oakland, CA. She writes for several Bay Area and national outlets. She enjoys long walks and her second novel is in the works. IG: @michellekicherer

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