Q: What is Bird City Comedy Festival and when will it take place?

A: Since 2016, Bird City Comedy Festival has showcased the finest in stand up, storytelling, improv and sketch across several Downtown Phoenix stages. Along with exciting up-and-comers from Arizona and beyond, we’ve featured such big names as Dana Gould, Aparna Nancherla, Jackie Kashian and many more. Bird City Comedy Festival 2020 will take place in Downtown Phoenix March 26-28, 2020.

Q: Why should I submit to Bird City Comedy Festival?

A: Bird City Comedy Festival is considered one of the best festivals among performers who attend other festivals. We do everything in our power to provide top-notch stage time, accommodations and networking opportunities for each of our selected performers.

Q: What do submission fees pay for?

A: All submission fees go toward accommodating festival comics and other festival operating costs. We provide hotel rooms or vouchers for all of our out-of-town performers as well as plenty of complimentary food and drink for all. 

Q: Who may submit?

A: We are looking for stand up comedians, storytellers, improvisers and sketch groups with an original voice. We also welcome submissions for new and exciting comedy shows, including podcasts, variety shows, game shows and much more.

Q: How do I submit?

A: Please fill out the submission form on our website as completely as possible. We require some basic information about you or your group, a video link of your performance, and a short bio. Although optional, you are also welcome to provide us with your headshot, website/social media profiles, as well as information about any shows you produce you'd like to bring to the festival . Submission fees are $25 from Sept. 15 through Oct. 31 and $35 from Nov. 1 through Dec. 15, 2018. We'll also have a few $5 submission days that will be announced with a few days' notice on social media. To find out about those and other special promotions, be sure to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and/or Instagram

Q: Will improv/sketch be part of Bird City?

A: Definitely! To submit, please use our improv or sketch submission forms and provide a complete description of your group's act. 

Q: Will storytelling be part of Bird City?

A: Yes! We absolutely welcome any comedic storytellers to submit to the fest. 

Q: May comedy musical acts submit to the festival?

A: Absolutely! We’d love to see musical acts at Bird City. To submit, please use the normal submission form and include a complete description of your act in the form for consideration.

Q: I’m part of a comedy duo/trio/team. How may we submit to the festival?

A: We welcome comedy teams to apply to Bird City. To apply, simply use our submission form and make sure to list all members of your team and to include a complete description of your act in the bio section. Please keep in mind that the majority of the listed members of your group should be able to attend in the event of acceptance.

Q: I produce a concept show I’d like to submit to the festival. How may I submit to the festival?

A: Awesome! If you're already submitting as a performer, you may also submit your show for no additional charge, or you can just submit your show. Please provide a complete description of the show, any web links, tech needs and a video if available. We may contact you for additional information.

If your show is accepted into the festival, we will work with you to help you book performers in town that best suit your show.

Q: I want to apply for multiple things for the fest. How do I go about that? 

A: We love our jack of all trades, so our submission form is set up so that you can submit for several things without incurring an additional charge. However, if you run into any issues, please contact us at birdcitycomedy@gmail.com.

Q: What are you looking for in a performers?

A: We are looking for performers with a confident stage presence, unique perspective and original material. Also, we prefer comics with at least two years of performing experience. If you want an idea of what we are looking for, check out our past performers.

Q: What makes a good comedy video?

A: For best success, please submit a video that is:

  • At least four minutes in length

  • Not set to private (unlisted is fine)

  • Of a single, largely unedited set (no "best of" videos, please)

  • Of decent sound quality

  • Recorded within the last two years

  • Funny

In addition to those basic criteria, we highly recommend submitting a video of a strong, tight set that showcases well-honed material and a rapport with the audience. We also suggest starting the video with you and not the host. Essentially, keep in mind that, in most cases, your video will be our first impression of you, so make it the best impression you can. 

Q: Is there a discount for Arizona-based performers?

A: Yes! To encourage our Grand Canyon state folks to apply, we are offering a small discount. 

Q: I’ve submitted! When will I hear from you about whether or not I got into the festival?

A: We will contact you either way by the email address you provided by late January/early February 2018.  To make sure you don't miss this email, please add birdcitycomedy@gmail.com to your safe senders' list. 

Q: Are submission fees refundable?

A: In extraneous circumstances, yes. If you've submitted and would like to be removed from consideration, please let us know at birdcitycomedy@gmail.com by December 15, 2019 for a refund. 

Q: Will be you providing accommodation for performers admitted into the festival?

A: Yes, we will provide accommodation in central Phoenix for festival comics who live outside the greater Phoenix metro. In most cases, these rooms will be shared with other comedians from the festival. If you’d like to arrange your own accommodations, we will provide you with a voucher to use toward your accommodation costs during the festival. 

Q: How much stage time will accepted performers get?

A: The amount of stage time will vary depending on type of act and level of experience. Stand ups will get at least one 8-minute set for each night they are available to perform. Storytellers will get at least one 10-minute story. Sketch/improv groups will get one 25-minute performance. We will also have additional opportunities for performing throughout the festival. 

Q: I didn’t get into Bird City. What’s next?

A: First, let us offer our condolences. But there are a few other ways to be involved in our festival. For starters, everyone who submitted will receive a discounted price on a festival pass, good for admission into all festival shows. Also, we will have a few open mics where you can potentially get some time. Plus, we’re always looking for volunteers.

Q: I’m interested in volunteering for the festival. How can I help?

A: Awesome! We’re looking for anyone and everyone who wants to help. Please get in touch with us by filling out our volunteer form

Q: When can I buy tickets/festival passes for Bird City?

A: Bird City individual tickets and passes will be available for sale in February 2020.