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Women in Comedy Festival News



Nov. 25th, 2015 – Over the last seven years, the Women In Comedy Festival (WICF) has grown from a single-venue, invitation-only event to a multi-venue, internationally-known festival.

WICF has hosted headliners such as Jane Lynch, Amy Sedaris, Maria Bamford, Judy Gold, and Rachel Dratch as well as hundreds of up-and-coming comedians from all over the world. With the rapid growth and a close to year-round production cycle, the producers have decided to spend the 2015-2016 season on a number of improvements and expansions to infrastructure, content development, and special events to keep up with WICF’s popularity. As a result, WICF will be taking a year off from hosting its signature annual festival, with plans to return in 2017 with a bigger and better festival.

In keeping with the mission and spirit of the festival, WICF is partnering with ImprovBoston to offer a series of workshops, seminars, and other professional development opportunities for women in comedy. The largest nonprofit comedy theater in New England, ImprovBoston will add its resources to the collaboration, hosting performance events throughout 2016 to highlight the important work of WICF. WICF and ImprovBoston are already designing the first year of the Visiting Artist Series with enthusiastic interest from revered comedians including Giulia Rozzi (MTV, VH1), Kelly MacFarland (ABC, NBC), Megan Gray (New York’s Magnet Theater, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon), Rachel Mason and Susan Messing (Second City, The Annoyance).

“Since WICF’s inception in 2009, the comedy climate for women has changed considerably, with many more high-profile women carrying their own television shows, films, and stage shows, not only in front of the camera, but behind the camera in producing, writing, and directing roles. However, there is still much work to be done,” says Co-Producer Michelle Barbera. “WICF is committed to building and maintaining its presence in the comedy world through as many outlets as possible, so that comedians of all stripes can gain additional visibility and support”, says co-producer Elyse Schuerman. This includes producing and supporting more events throughout the year, further developing the film component of the festival, creating and supporting podcasts, web-series, and other projects, developing an even more cohesive and user-friendly web presence, and engaging with like-minded organizations and sponsors to further both our mission and theirs. “Our team wants to expand platforms WICF can provide to comedians to get their work seen,” adds co-producer Maria Ciampa. Co-producer Michelle Barbera says “We want to reach out to creative people all over the country and beyond who are interested in making comedy and help support them year-round.”

WICF would like to invite anyone who is interested in comedy to share their creative ideas and feedback with WICF.. WICF will continue to work with and support events at its hosting venues throughout the year. The Brattle Theater, Club Café , Club Passim, the Comedy Studio, ImprovBoston, Improv Asylum, Laugh Boston, and The Wilbur Theater are tremendous allies to WICF who further the work of comedians on a regular basis.Those interested in getting involved with any aspect of the organization can contact WICF at Comedians who wish to have their projects, special performances and tours promoted can contact us at

WICF is co-produced by Michelle Barbera, Maria Ciampa, and Elyse Schuerman. Christine Cannavo, Valerie Frank, Michelle McNulty, and Dave Sawyer are associate producers.