Forget having to wait in line, dealing with getting a good seat or trying to hear the punch line over all the chatter and laughter. Comedy Central is hosting a comedy festival that you don’t have to leave your desk or house to watch. You don’t even have to turn on the TV, you just have to turn on Twitter.
Comedy Central and Twitter have teamed up to host #ComedyFest — the first comedy festival on the social network. The festival will kick off a week from today on April 29 with a live stream event, which will follow Mel Brooks’ joining Twitter. Brooks will join Twitter and will tweet the link to the livestream where you can watch him and Carl Reiner perform at the Paley Center. The event features Brooks’ first encounters with Twitter and presumably a lot of laughs. Judd Apatow will moderate and you will be able to watch the livestream on Twitter.
But the laughs won’t end there. The festival, which goes through May 3, consists of an entire schedule of 16 programmed events with over 50 comedians performing digitally, that is.
“The live stream is one way it will happen. In other cases it will be comedians or directors tweeting using the hashtag #Comedyfest, tweeting jokes out and to each other,” Walter Levitt, Comedy Central executive vice president of marketing, told ABC News. “In other ways it will be people tweeting Vines, those six-second videos.”
Many of the events will sync up with Comedy Central programming. For instance, Amy Schumer (@amyschumer) will livetweet the premiere of her new show “Inside Amy Schumer” and Doug Benson (@doughbenson) will livetweet through “Encino Man.” A full list of the scheduled programs will be put up at Comedy Central’s website this week.
So, why Twitter and not Facebook, Google+ or Reddit? Levitt said that Twitter has already become a place where comedians are congregating to tell jokes. “Twitter has become an incredible platform. It’s a natural place to have conversation around comedy and tweet things that are funny,” he said.
This is the first comedy festival held on Twitter, but not the first online festival. In February, the WiredArts Fest brought theater and dance performances to the Internet with 24 streaming performances.
Levitt admits this is an experiment and that both Comedy Central and Twitter will learn things as it happens, but still he expects this to become an annual event. “This is year one, we will try new things and it might be experimental,” he said. “We hope to learn some things and do it bigger and better in year two.”