Buffalo has a very diverse comedy scene.  Maybe because we need to have a good sense of humor to survive our winters. During and after college, I would head to open mic night at Nietzche’s to see my pals like Dan Fisher and Josh Potter take the stage and get the room in stitches.

When Helium Comedy Club opened, it brought the local scene to a new level by attracting bigger names to a true comedic venue and gave those of us who love to laugh a new thing to do for dates or out with friends.

Chris Scherr has been a friend of mine since the 1990s. After going to college at Fredonia, he headed off to NYC to try out comedy for a while and his since come back to Buffalo fully charged to organize all the different comedians, comedy groups, comedy venues, as well as the budding film production scene in Buffalo into a collaboration that puts Buffalo on the national scene for comedy.

Buffalo Sketch Comedy is one of his current projects.  We attended a BSC show  in March at the ComedySportz and we were really impressed by the skits and the incorporation of video into the show that ComedySportz is doing.

They’ve got a show tonight Saturday April 18 – 9:30 pm at The Arena (Buffalo ComedySportz Arena) 4476 Main St. in the Snyder Sq., Amherst. tickets $12.

We talked with Chris about Buffalo Sketch Comedy and what they’re up to and why they do it.

Our show usually has committed cast members with varying skills sets in theatre, stand up, improv etc. We tend to blend in recurring special guest. This show Chris Scherr, Tony Mangano, Will Excel, and featuring local actor Bryan Patrick Stoyle and a talented puppeteer, Cameron Garrity, who is the Executive Director/performer for the upcoming Geppetto Festival. (Yeah, we’ll have puppets.) Even a cameo from local filmmaker and longtime friend Matt Lorentz, (writer/director of B.O.Y.D)  Most of our online content was filmed/edited by Matt.

We don’t provide “in the moment” humor that Improv comedy displays and it’s not a stand-up comedy show. If anything it’s more theatrical. We enjoy freshening up the set with new material or experimenting with ambitious sketches and outlandish characters. Luckily we’ve had plenty of support from an number of venues like Merge, Nietzsche’s, and most notably The Arena (owned by Buffalo Comedysportz ) The Arena is currently our playground that spoils us with a multimedia setting and hard-working staff.

The Process: It’s a lot of work that keeps our momentum shifting. We typically book one show or two a month because it usually takes us a month to develop and prepare for that. It’s an arduous process. Like SNL, we filter through a LOT of material. Unlike SNL there’s usually 2 or 3 dedicated writers as opposed to the army of Harvard grads they hire. But amongst scheduling conflicts, day time jobs, night time jobs, weather, location, etc. we make it work.

We look to continue carrying the torch for the sketch genre not just because it’s in our name (especially now that we’re a DBA) but also because there’s (still) no one else in the area dedicated to it like we are. Which is kind of a back-handed compliment if you think about it. We might be the most premiere sketch troupe in town because there are no others. In knowing that- we work to keeping the bar high… albeit being lowbrow at times.

THE GOAL: Like anybody, we want to be funny. Like any comic, we want to be relevant. Like any artist, we’d like to make a living doing so (eventually). But as long as we have fun and spread some awareness to sketch humor around town we’ll be happy.

Like the city of Buffalo, we like to think we’re in an upswing or a renaissance period…but there’s still a lot of work to be done.